Monday, June 09, 2014
So it happened all the diagnosis we were battling were declared.
I've been a numb mama, who flounders with a foot in each camp for Jesus to heal this babies body, and that he created her perfectly right how she is. Its like the North and South pole conflicting, but I trust them both.

I haven't really broken down and processed this. No tears, worried that if I did they wouldn't stop.
And truthfully I went a good 24 hours where I zombie walked the house, without sleeping, without changing out of that green dress. Where I didn't cry, just thrashed.

The only way I can describe this week, is here I am .. thrashing before the Lord. More info, more likely complications down the road, and my body thrashes before the Lord in the water. I take some of it in, in my thrashing. I hate this. All of this. This wasn't a club I signed up (who does?). This wasn't MY plans for this baby, for my life. Im Thrashing in water, not softly, not splashing, THRASHING.

Jesus keeps telling me to put my feet down in this puddle. But still I thrash. And its ugly. Violent. Angry, sad. Still thrashing. My spirit is upside down.

A new language is being spoken around me, they assume this is a club I've been a part of before.. and Im constantly asking for clarification on what these words, terms, insurance codes mean. I dont know them. Im too busy thrashing, don't they know.

Yesterday at church this song happened. And man it was a balm to my spirit.
The fact that I've been so busy with baby blowouts and poetry units to process any of this, to reach down and trust him. Between me thrashing and real life with 2 big kids and 1 high needs baby, whos got time to process?

But these words, man.. if your thrashing... will force your legs to the ground. Will lift your head up to the heavens and just force you to lean into our Father.

I need less thrashing... more trusting....





HE cares for the orphan.
The pressure is off, Im just to be hands. Because he has the weight of this. 
He cares for me.

He gives justice to the weak.
To her and me.

My confidence is in the name of the Lord. Not the healing, not the circumstance... Man....

And to stand there and surrender and just sing hallelujah........
well thrashing subsides.The water calms.
My feet hit (only knee deep, because the thrashing has been ridiculous anyways).

God is so sovereign.

But it will be on repeat this week, when the enemy strikes.......
Thursday, June 05, 2014

seven

To my joy girl,

You are 7 months old today. 7.
You are 14 lbs. You are almost 5 times what you were at birth.
This journey and ride we are on together has been wild and rocky.
But I have news for you. We have fallen in love.

Your a funny personality miss thing, you know what you want.
Your personality is waking from a deep sleep, and you my sweet girl are becoming alive.
And as you become alive, Im waking up from a deep fog. 

You want my face, or daddys voice, or Cades smiles, or Rylans touch. You want us. Your family, You know us. And you know your loved, I believe it in my being. And that is already success in this realm of family building.

Your body wiggles in excitment when daddys voice enters the house, your eyes follow me wherever I go, because Im never far.

Today a therapist tried to feed you as I dealt with brother and sister, but your eyes followed and you growled at her until she handed you back where you belong. Belong.

The world is full unknowns and question marks. I hate to say that the world has you on paper as a question mark. But Jesus does not. He knows you, knows your belonging, knows your limits and laughs, because He knows you deeper than any diagnosis, or medical chart.

Yesterday I heard words about you, words mamas don't like to hear. Words limiting your future skills. I pray they are wrong, and trust if they aren't. That these words don't become boxes for you to fit into. That you will be strong and fierce and happy. Deeply happy. I pray we prove some things wrong. I pray that you feel that you are fully and wonderfully made. I just pray. Because Im scared, Im sad, Im angry. Its all new. But mamas fight for their babies. So Im doing that. Each day that you are mine. He knows. He knows.

Lets get back to your smile, your ridiculously beautiful smile. Your belly laugh when I gnaw on your belly and the way you even puff it out a little to ask for more of all that loving. The way you finally awoke us cooing the other day instead of crying. The way I actually think your scissored little legs are the darn cutest chicken legs I ever did see.

I pray strength, healing, love, happiness over you. I want to bathe you in it. Speak truth to you every day. Read scriptures, and cling to Jesus harder than ever before. I want you to know.

Yesterday as the Dr.s declared these new words, that I had already researched and knew in my heart. I just kissed you, over and over again, covered you in love. Frantically kissed you as if I could take it all away.
But Im not the healer. He is.

I love you sweet girl.

Mom


Tuesday, June 03, 2014

going on a trip

I stuck my feet in the sand the other day.
It was healing.
I would love to say it washed away all the realities of where we are at.
It didn't.
But it was good.

The kids hit the ground running.
Squeals to the max.
Rylan flapped her hands as if she was 2, which is really the sign of pure joy for our girl.
She will stop soon, Im guessing with that gesture.
I'll likely cry the day I realize I haven't seen her hands excitingly flapping in some time.
Baby E girl, well she calmed, the waves working like the biggest and bestest white noise machine around.
Her being calm, calmed Nick and I.
The sand, the waves, the joy.
We had needed to come and be in this place.

It got me thinking about how sometimes
we just have to go be where the joy is.
Physically mentally, whatever it is, but make the point to travel there.
It doesn't sneak up on us like anger or rage, or silliness.
Intruding on our day. 
Its consistent and either we choose to be in it, or we don't.

I sat in a meeting last week one of many, and the man obviously hadn't read the chart well enough
to see that biologically this baby wasn't born from me.
He asked me. Do you feel like you might have post partum?
I actually chuckled at the irony.
Do I feel like it. YES.
Could I possibly. NO.
Excuse me Mr. goverment developmental official.. how would you like me to go about answering this?
I bet you don't have a checkbox for all this crazy.

I need to make choices to travel to the joy more often.
The place where it rests. It is.
Because all the facts are there for joy.
There is a very strong case to defend it.
Even when circumstance isn't.
I may feel happy or... feel sad.
But Joy is something you have. You possess.
When the eye of storm rages around.
I question if I have claimed ownership over it enough.

I haven't made the choice lately to reach into that place.
I have turmoiled with the hows and whys. Wanting Jesus to fill in gaps in the promise.
Wanting Jesus to frankly, explain himself to me.
 How absurd.

Today I will attempt journey to joy.
As I acknowledge facts that might be.
As I feel emotions that may not match.
I will just pack my bags and travel there, because the facts.
The cross,
The love he has for me.
Well its sufficient. 








Sunday, May 25, 2014

pause

My heart is tongue tied. Is that possible?
I've now had my babykins longer than any of our foster babies. Court is approaching and I find Im getting more and more emotional as the days draw near.

Have I mentioned she is painfully hard. Thus the silence around here.
Its hard to go to battle for complicated life, can you imagine the war Jesus raged over for me.
Messy old me.
My heart aches at the injustice of what she is having to overcome still from things inutero. I love her so dearly.
Also colic is not my friend and I miss sleep.

There aren't many details I can share.. but I can share the range of emotions that weigh heavily on me these days.

A lady yesterday stopped me in the store and told me my baby looked just like me, I beamed. My baby.

The reality is, shes Jesus' baby and only He knows. And I remind myself He knows. Because my heart feels pinched at the thought of having a baby R sized hole in my heart again. I now know that pain is raw and real. Baby girl never replaced him, and noone else would ever replace her.

I wrestle with Jesus about even the hint of possiblity of having to walk that road.. again.
I wrestle with Jesus about the road and what  it may look like longterm, and developmentally where we sit. The diagnosiss we may have to walk out. And then I stare at her blue eyes and big gummy grin, and well. there it is.... mama love for her. So deep, diagnosis doesn't matter.

We are whirlwind here in this home of life. Life with Rylan and Cade haven't stopped for a moment, falling in love with my husband day by day doesn't ever pause,  and I could shake myself for not updating on them, or on home projects, or yummy meals and sweet moments. But some of it feels phony when I cant be honest and say. I miss simple life. I miss the lack of social workers, I miss not being judged. And everyday right now is not bright and happy. The unknown lingers over the air.

And then that smile again, I adore her. Deeply. I AM HER MOM. I feel it.
And I would pay this price of uncertainty for now... 

So I surrender all these feelings up to my savior, and I replay the promises he told me in the light. 
And I trust Him, again.

And I speak words of life and healing over her body, day by day.
Isn't that what a mama would do?

Would you pray for our home. For the court system, and for the next month of waiting.
And if you see me in public and my eyes are glazed, be tender.

This may be my hardest labor yet.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Somedays I don't know what to make of this

Christmas came and went, I almost missed it if I blinked to long. The whirlwind of getting ready for a new baby that was is in NICU in a moments time, getting settled, adjusting to the kids being in every possible holiday production this side of the Mississippi and then whamo christmas. My heart never settled, I didn't love that. It won't happen again. I hope.

Having her here was sweet she slept and missed it too... but thats allowed at 5lbs.

Shortly after Christmas we reentered the hospital with little ms, and the truth is for several moments I thought she was dying in my arms. She contracted the flu and oh man is it terrifying. We spent several days in PICU with her on CPAP and I never left her side but for 20 minutes of fresh air once. I just couldn't. I couldn't get out of my mind the days on end in NICU without someone. So I was privilged to be her someone. And we bonded there, beautifully, or at least I did.

We survived that somewhat hellish week, we laughed a lot for shear necessity and we slept through the new year too, as it was the first time in days she wasn't desating all over the place. We were happy to snooze through it.

I feel fairly fickle you all must know. Im in love again... I bask with my mouth, when only moments ago I was mumbling over heartache. I still have heartache. Just so your aware. I realize how it sounds...I do. Its embarrasing really. I am so hot and cold these wretched foster days.

I spotted a little boy so similar to baby R the other day, that I confided to my friend I want to rub his hair, and smooch his face. I am now that creepy lady at the park. Local moms, lock up your African boys, or I may just put them in my pocket. I miss him so, and pray for him and hope that his days are filled with joy and nuturing and so much love and lots of fist pumps, because he likes that.

But this little girl. Oh man, I love her too, thats the truth. She is my first little bit that I haven't met her biological family, so I have fully claimed her in my heart without the gentle reminders of what this is. I am trusting him with promises he has given me and so I just surrender her. Surrender me. Surrender my kids, as we are all ... all in right now. This process is never normal. Or right. But its what He has us do.

She is growing steadily despite sickness. She loves to be swaddled, her eyes haven't found us yet. She looks like she was born this morning still. People in public say I look great for having a baby, God bless them. And for not having a baby.... well lets not go there.

I am finding rhythym, nesting, purging, its a new year afterall. Getting caught up on this month of being behind, and sick, horribly sick. Wondering what this year has and holds for me.

In fact the missing of the countdown, didn't set my heart in motion for newness, for change, for hope. I shall countdown tonight.... because, its just good and right, and puts the year in motion on that best foot forward type of way....

Happy Happy New Year to you.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

a new season

My intent has been to write you when its not soaked in foster life. But the reality is it keeps coming around. It IS our life right now. We are knee deep in Him and thats just friends the way He continues to direct our lives these days. Im good with that.

2 weeks ago I got a call.
A call I knew I would get.
I told Nick that surely we would hang 5 stockings.
We went and met another very special little girl, who ended up being more medical need than our little home could offer her. I wondered what the Lords purpose was in that, in having us see her lovely eyes, and stroke her face, just to be told no. 
I went to Target and bought a baby girl dress. The longing so deep in me.
And as I sat on the couch wondering how dumb it was of me to make that purchase. My phone rang.
For her. And the yes left my mouth before any details were uttered, before I spoke to Nick. Yes, Yes, Yes.

This story is layered beautiful. More layered than I can share on this side of the story.
But this is going to be a crazy ride.
Isn't it all.

We spent a week in NICU a hard week. Divided between our now kids, and this new baby.
Midnight runs to a child I barely knew but wasn't eating well, whose heart was taking dips. 
Who I loved instantly.
Terrifying. But true.
She needed a mama.
And right now. I am her mama.

The phrases I have said over and over again, is who gets to do this?
Who takes a tiny precious new baby as their own.
It is the highest privilege to be chosen for her right now.

So our home is on round the clock feedings, baby gear everywhere.
Burp clothes soaked in formula.
I kiss her sweet face 400 times a day.
Making up lost time as she is already 7 weeks old.

Im saying things like, oh she always holds her hands like that.
Or mocking or grunting little goat feeding noises. They are so dear.
She is still very much asleep as she is the tiniest preemie you ever did see...
But she is growing fast within our walls.
This is the shift to our new normal
and its going well.
Sleepy but well.

Jesus knows our desires, so tenderly.
As I pat her bum and nuzzle her neck, he knows.
All my fear, all this surrender, crumpled at his feet.

Keep your hands and arms inside the cart at all times...
cause we are falling in love. Again.
Thursday, December 05, 2013

on being quiet

Sometimes Im quiet.
I mean not if you know me in person.
Im hardly quiet.
But here, its hard sometimes to come here and write
and not feel like a broken record over and over again.
Foster care is hard. We miss R. Blah blah blah.

Im struggling with that feeling of everyone wanting us to get over it.
So I stay quiet. But really I miss him a lot.
But me not saying that is more comfortable for a lot of people.
Heck its more comfortable for me.

The other night I finally processed how I feel about this.
So concerned with everyone else.
The truth is.
I wanted to be his mama. Thats the truth.

The house is holiday fied.
Christmas cards are here, I'm addressing and stamping.
Cade lost a tooth. My baby boy.
Ornaments get broken at least once a day.
I don't care. They are just ornaments.
Life has a chunk extra of perspective.
Im glad there crazy wild hands can break an ornament.
If baby boy were here, we would have ornaments from 2 feet high only.

Rylan has a wish list - an alarm clock, a robe.
Cade doesn't. It hasn't occurred to him to ask for anything yet.
I love them so much. I am a proud mama.

Nick and I went away for a whole week, which I want to blog so badly
Im waiting on some pictures we ordered.
Just know that we never left each others side,
we talked a lot
ate a lot
laughed a lot.
It healed so much.
I love this season of life, and I can't wait to be just us either.
He is seriously still the most fun person to be around.
I smiled a lot.
And I miss him so much now that we are home and doing a lot of life.

However, I have tan lines from said trip. And a runny nose.
Its not a cute combo.
And not during my busy photo season.

I wrapped gifts and homeschool prepped yesterday.
Maybe just maybe I watched a parenthood and boo hoo'd.
Im reading I captured the castle and loving it.
Im eating too much sugar.
For reals.

The table is a constant art project.
I love it.

Life is layered.
So layered. with greif, and joy.
So for that Im grateful.

I am not quite at all on instagram.. so if you need more regular hellos.
Say hi there.   leslieautumn
 

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