Wednesday, November 28, 2012

God's Protection

In my last blog post I mentioned that we had witnessed God's protection over us while I was in the hospital. To explain, let me first back up a few years. Close to about 4 years ago, I went in for minor laparoscopic surgery to try to address some infertility issues that we had been dealing with. The surgery never actually happened because I had a severe allergic reaction to one of the medications that was being pumped into me and went into anaphylactic shock on the operating table. They literally had to fight to save my life. At the time, the anesthesiologist said that he had never seen a reaction like that and that although he couldn't be 100% sure which medication caused the reaction (they give you antibiotics, anesthesia, etc. in your IV at the same time), he was fairly certain that it would have to have been the particular anesthetic they used that could have caused that sort of reaction. The antibiotic used was a very common antibiotic and he had never seen it cause that sort of reaction. So, although we couldn't be certain, we went on the assumption that the anesthetic was what I was severely allergic to. It wasn't too big of a concern on a go-forward basis because it's not something that is commonly given.

Fast forward to my stay in the hospital where things appeared to continue to go wrong. The heavy bleeding lead the hospital stay and to the medications to stop the contractions and bleeding, which lead to me having to be completely immobile, which lead to the use of the catheter, which lead to the bladder infection, which lead to the kidney infection, which lead to the antibiotics that were put in my IV.  It seemed like things just kept getting worse and worse. Well, they started me on a slow drip of a very commonly used antibiotic, Ancef, in my IV to address the infections, and immediately I started to have an allergic reaction. Within the first minute of them starting the drip, I began to itch all over, started breaking out in hives, felt my face going numb, and just started feeling really funny. I called the nurse back right away and she recognized that I was having an allergic reaction, stopped the drip and starting putting benadryl in the IV instead.

So, although maybe none of that sounds like God's protection yet, here's the amazing thing...the nurse said that Ancef is the routine antibiotic that is used prior to a c-section, and that before the surgery, you are not put on a slow drip, but it is all pumped into you at once - just like it was done prior to the laparoscopic surgery I was supposed to have 4 years ago. If that had happened again prior to the c-section, it very well could have been life-threatening for me or for the baby or for both of us.

So, what appeared to be everything going wrong, was really, I believe, God protecting us from something far worse. And, in that moment, I really got a sense of His faithfulness to us and His control over the trials that we are being faced with.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Hospital Stay - Week 1

I know I've been absent from the blog for a while. The sad thing is that I actually have had a few posts written and just waiting to be added for quite some time, but I hadn't gotten around to adding the pictures that I wanted to add to them, so I never actually put them on the blog. Maybe I'll have a little more time to try to get caught up as I am now on bedrest in the hospital indefinitely. I have been here for a week now though, and haven't been able to do much of anything, so I'm not making promises. It's not easy to do much when you feel miserable and are not even allowed to sit up in bed. I usually try to be upbeat and have a good attitude about things, and I'm trying to do that now, but I can honestly say that I truly hate this place. Let me back up...

Last Monday evening, I was just going about normal activities when I started to bleed heavily. (I think I mentioned in my last post that I have something called placenta previa, and this is one of the complications that it can lead to.) Jay wasn't home and I didn't want to alarm the kids so I tried to calmly get things under control. I called my friend, Katie, to drive me to the hospital, and called my neighbor and my parents to get the kids taken care of. I didn't tell Jake and Addi what was going on, but Jake definitely knew something was up and was concerned. Jay was up at Biola and I called him and told him to meet me at the hospital.

To make a long story short, I was admitted into the hospital and have been here ever since. It has been physically and emotionally draining. I can't stand the thought of not being home to take care of my kids and I worry the most about Tate. He is so little and he needs me. I was still nursing him up until having to be here, and the poor little guy just had to be weaned cold turkey. I worry constantly about what this is going to do to the bond that I have with him. I am so fortunate to have so many people in our lives who are praying for us and helping to take care of us. And I can't begin to describe how amazing Jay has been through all of this. I know that he has the weight of the world on his shoulders, but he doesn't let on for a second. I can't believe how he is just dealing with everything. It doesn't change the fact that I worry about my kids all the time though.

The first few days here were pure hell. They put me on something called magnesium sulfate to try to stop the bleeding and contractions, and basically, it made it so that I was just sick and couldn't function at all. I could hardly talk, much less move. I had another big bleeding episode on Tuesday, and the doctors got me prepped for an emergency c-section (I was 28 weeks along at the time, now 29). By God's grace, that didn't happen, but they then upped the dose of the magnesium, making it even worse. Once the bleeding was under control for a couple of days, they took me off of that and that has made all the difference in the world...not that it has made things pleasant. At least I am able to function though. I have such a hard time with doctors/hospitals, etc. because, often times, all of their interventions just lead to different complications. The catheter that they had in me lead to a bladder infection, which lead to a kidney infection, high fever, major back pain, antibiotics, etc. And I have no doubt that the medications they are pumping me full of will lead to other complications as well. I realize that it is important to be here in the case of another emergency, but I truly believe that the longer I stay, the more unhealthy I become.

All that said though, I did witness God's protection and truly believe He was at work here. I am going to post that story next...

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

It's A...

I am now 22 weeks along and we had an ultrasound last week to check on the baby, find out the sex, etc. We discovered that we are having another little boy, which will be great for Tate since they will be so close in age. Addi, however, did not find the news so wonderful. She has been hoping so desperately for a girl, had already named the baby Kyli, and refused to acknowledge that it might be anything but a girl. The kids didn't come with us to the ultrasound this time, but as soon as we got back, Addi came running out shouting, "What is it? What is it? Is it a girl? Is it Kyli?" I tried to be as positive as I could and told her that the great thing was that she got to continue to be our only little princess. When she heard this, she started sobbing. I mean, really sobbing. She wasn't trying to be dramatic or put on a show, she was just really, truly heartbroken, and I felt so sad for her. She just buried her face in me and kept crying and crying. Then, Jay went to give her a hug and she clung to him and just kept crying. I knew that she was going to be disappointed, but even I was surprised at how hard she took it. She has already started to get used to the idea though, and even as she was praying yesterday, she thanked God that it was a little boy for Tate.

The baby looked healthy and was measuring as he should be, and, of course, that is what's important. We are so incredibly grateful. We did find out though that I have something called complete placenta previa, meaning that the placenta is not where it should be and is completely covering the cervix. Because it is complete, there is far less likelihood of it moving. This can lead to complications and bedrest, and, if it remains as is, will require a c-section. C-sections are so common now and I know that to some people it is just very normal and does not sound like a big deal. But to me, it is a huge deal, and is completely the opposite of what I would hope for for the baby and for me. I would imagine that I feel about having a c-section the way a lot of people would feel about having a homebirth!

We certainly want to focus on the miracle of another healthy baby so far and we thank the Lord for another little blessing. And, at the same time, we are praying for healing in my body, and are trying some alternative therapies to attempt to correct the position of the placenta. I'll keep you posted!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Summer Happenings

Besides our trip to TN last month, we've had a pretty mellow summer. Jay has taken the kids on a couple of little camping trips now that they have LOVED. We have decided that we definitely want to be a camping family. For the time being though, it will have to be Jay and the older ones doing the camping while I hang out with the little guys. (Yes, that was plural. I don't think that I've mentioned it here, but I am, in fact, already pregnant again. Life is going to get especially crazy come the end of January when we have a not-quite-16 month old, and a newborn! More on that another time though.) The last camping trip was just a boys trip, so Addi and Tate and I hung out and had some time together. We went for tea one afternoon because Addi thought it would be a good idea to do something "girly" while the boys were away. We've been to trying to get to the beach and the lake whenever we can, but haven't made it as much as last summer. It's a little different this year now that we're back to baby restrictions and nap times. We're not quite as foot loose and fancy free!

Now I'm focused on getting us ready to start school again. I spend my evenings trying to plan out our strict schedule that we will never adhere to. But, I do it anyway. I figure that I have to start out especially organized this year, so that come January when there's another baby, I will feel like we've got school things under control and running smoothly. The kids are starting back up with soccer this week and we are planning on starting our first day back to school on the 29th, the same day that Jay starts back teaching at Biola. So, we're beginning to get a little more structure back into our days.

Tate is still doing awesome. He's got the army crawl down, which is pretty funny to watch. I don't know why he won't get up on his knees, but he manages to drag himself around just fine. He's a happy kid. He definitely doesn't like to be too far from me, but I can't say that I blame him! :)

 Well, he's usually a happy kid! 

My birthday was in July, and the kids and Jay framed this, "10 Things We Love About Mommy." They took turns coming up with each thing and writing it out. Addi's are the purple ones, Jake's are the red ones, and Jay's are the blue ones. I loved it! 

Friday, August 17, 2012


We went to Tennessee a month ago to visit my sister, brother-in-law, and all the kids, and had a great time. I got to see their newest addition (#5!) for the first time, and Jake and Addi had such a great time spending time with their cousins. They did not have a bad moment between them even after spending all day together, everyday, for a week. Here are some pictures from the trip.

The Girls

Dance parties on the bed were pretty much a daily occurrence. 

The Boys

The Babes

The Newest Addition
(Sorry for the dark's all I've got!)

 Both times that we have visited, we have stayed at this cute little log cabin, surrounded by nature. One of our favorite things is to sit in the rocking chairs on the covered porch and listen to the bugs, watch the deer, horses, and turkey, and watch the rain pour down.

 Jake, on the other hand, prefers not to just watch the rain.

We came prepared with the BB gun this time. I think we could fit right in in TN!

 Tate did really well for his first time traveling. As I've mentioned, he is NOT my best sleeper, so we had some concerns that he wouldn't sleep at all in new surroundings and on a different schedule. He did a great job though.

Jake and Addi loved getting to feed the horses too. 

If you ask Addi what she wants to be when she grows up, she will tell you without hesitation that she wants to be a cowgirl and she wants to work with Daddy. She has the cowgirl thing down pretty well (minus actually knowing how to ride a horse and work on a farm :) ). She really does love horses though.

 We visited downtown Nashville this time to meet some friends of ours for dinner one night. 

 This girl was a Kindergarten student of mine 11 years ago. She's 16 now!

She convinced Addi to get out on the dance floor to learn a line dance. Jake was having none of it though. Our friend even tried to bribe him with $5, and he still wouldn't get out there. 

 We visited a nearby lake one day with the kids. We brought a picnic and a blow-up boat with paddles. What more do you need?

 The whole gang...almost (just missing a couple!).

 The kids did not want to say goodbye, but we're hoping to be back again very soon!