Monday, March 28, 2011


I've just returned from my Weight Watchers meeting where I was awarded Lifetime Member status!  I've been member of Weight Watchers three times since 2005 but this is the first time I've become a Lifetime Member.  I lost 25 pounds for my wedding, and then managed to gain nearly 40.  After failed fertility treatments, I rejoined in 2008 and had lost 15 pounds when I found out we were expecting triplets.  And now, almost six years later, and 18 months after having the babies, I've hit my goal and maintained it for six weeks (I'm actually a couple pounds under) enabling me to become a "lifer."  But the thing I love about this program is that when you hit this goal, it doesn't mean you've FINISHED.  Instead, it means for the remainder of your lifetime you have a support system to help you maintain that goal. 

It's not the end, it's the beginning.  The beginning of viewing yourself differently, viewing how you eat, how you live, how you exercise, with new eyes.  And the thing that's so exciting to me is that the lifetime-me is the one who will teach my kids how to eat and exercise and live healthy active lifestyles.  And if they grow up knowing only that, then that's how they'll live.  In a land of people struggling with labels like obese, feeling defeated over the limitations they have when they shop for clothes, having heartache over the numbers they see when they have to get on a scale at the doctor's office, I so hope that this outlook will assist my children to by-pass some of that sadness. 

But the award, and the key I was given, and the applause from fellow strugglers in the room, helped me to think beyond my waistline.  What if there was a Faith Watchers and a Money Watchers and a Time Management Watchers?  What if I viewed all the big struggles I face from a Lifetime Member perspective?  I think so often we're working toward a certain end-goal, when in fact the focus should be on the process, the journey, the ride.  None of the clouds that linger over my head are really based on one particular problem.  The clouds are symptoms of underlying issues that I should be looking at with a fresh perspective.  My connection to God, deadlines missed, bills....they're all things that could be improved if I would behave from a healthier happier outlook where my goal is daily improvement (or maintenance) instead of being a firefighter in my own blazing life. 

The underlying philosophy which worked for me today in achieving my lifetime weight "goal" (WW provides, "information, knowledge, tools and motivation to help you make the decisions that are right for you about nutrition and exercise.") I could translate to become a "Lifetime Member" in all areas of my life. 

Information, knowledge, tools and motivation.   Where do you struggle?  What overshadows you today? Personally, I have several areas I'm re-energized to tackle.  It won't be easy.  It took me 18 weeks to get these last 16 pounds off.  I have a lot more than 16 pounds of dead weight in other areas of my life.  But I serve a big God.  He's brought me through bigger struggles before.  And I have a phenomenal husband.  A cheerleading mom.  A spectacular best friend.  And three little 18 month old walking talking motivations to get it done. 

Put on your hiking shoes, let's scale the next mountain. 

Isaiah 58 - The LORD will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame.
2 Chronicles 16 - For the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.
Isaiah 35 - Strengthen the feeble hands, steady the knees that give way; say to those with fearful hearts, “Be strong, do not fear; your God will come..."
Psalm 121 - I lift up my eyes to the mountains— where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip— he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.
Colossians 1 - For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives,so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Our Story: Part 2, The Verdict

A wise friend told me, after I was married, to see a fertility specialist if I didn't get pregnant within six months of trying.  She shared her story of trying for a couple of years with her husband before ever going to a specialist and then finding there was something seriously wrong. 

Because we were in our 30s when we got married, we started trying to get pregnant a few months after our wedding.  And promptly after six months of trying, we went to get checked out by a specialist, "just to make sure."  Shortly after that appointment, we were asked to come back to meet with the doctor about the results.  We figured that wasn't great news.  Turns out, there were some problems.  At the conclusion of the visit, we were given the verdict - "you have a 3 - 5% chance of ever getting pregnant on your own."  Then we were given options - drugs, IUI, IVF, and an assortment of other alphabet run downs. 

It honestly had never occurred to us that we would be one of the millions of couples that struggled with getting pregnant.  We just assumed, like so many other happy newlyweds, that children would come. And children were a HUGE part of the picture we both had in our heads of our life together.  In fact, we really couldn't imagine not being parents, we'd both wanted to be parents for a long time.  We relished our role as cool aunt and uncle, but we were ready for the next step.

We had some long talks.  I remember our walks through the neighborhood, a very family friendly one, trying to figure out what we should do, praying about what God would want us to do.  After some deliberation, we opted for the least invasive option only, the IUI,  before we would consider doing anything more significant.  The doctor said that gave us a 15% chance.  Not exactly the best odds in Vegas.  But I believed, and still believe, we serve a big God who can turn water into wine and raise Lazarus from the dead, so 15% isn't anything - He's used to working with 0% odds. 

So off we went.  Three rounds.  April 2007, May 2007 and October 2007.  Nothing.  I've never seen so many negative pregnancy tests and spent that much money on such disappointment.  I was heartbroken.  And starting to gain some weight.  And running through all these questions about my faith.

We were still happy.  Loving our life as a newlywed couple.  Traveling around the country.  Enjoying our freedom and discretionary income.  But waiting.  Waiting on a plus sign.

You Gotta Have Friends....

So I have always been blessed with amazing girlfriends.  I can remember best friends all the way back to elementary school.  I still keep up with my college roommate who is amazing, my law school best friend who is so fabulous, and I currently have the most spectacular best friend in the whole world.  These woman, and so many others, are like big giant presents given to me straight from Heaven. 

But I have a confession to make.  It's been lonely since having the babies.  I don't know if all new moms experience this or if it's just particularly acute for us mothers of multiples, but going from zero babies to three babies can be incredibly isolating.  And even though I've met some really cool new mom friends, I find it nearly impossible to get together.  I've cancelled more play dates than I've had because inevitably one of the kiddos gets sick.  I feel the isolation particularly on the weekends when Bray is out of town and I'm home bound.  Trying to get out of the house with three babies was impossible because I was so worried they were going to get sick, but even now that they're toddlers I find it a struggle.  I have to get myself ready (when?), get them ready, get them loaded, stay on our schedule, and then where do I go with three kids?  I can't let them down at a park alone because they run all different directions.  I can't maneuver our choo-choo wagon or triplette stroller in many areas.  And then if I plan to partner with friends, as I mentioned, something comes up - inclement weather, a fevered child, SOMETHING. 

I was single for a long time.  I spent weekends hopping from brunch to movies to drinks to shopping with dear precious friends.  This may all sound vapid, but it wasn't about the activities, it was about the friendships.  And those friendships have gotten pretty dusty. 

I've been thinking about this for two reasons.  One, I read an article in my Parents magazine this week that was talking about new moms and friendships.  And how critical they are.  Facebook doesn't cut it.  Occasional emails won't do.  You need face-to-face, hug-to-hug, girlfriends to get you through.  That's how we're wired.  Two, I'm leaving for New York next week for a 40th birthday weekend with my best friend.  I have been cycling between sheer bliss about three fun filled days with her in a city we love (and two uninterrupted nights of sleep) and feeling guilty about my first weekend leaving the kids since they were born.  We tried for so long and so hard to have these babies, WHY should I feel like I need any time away? I MUST be a terrible mother. 

But I am not.  (As my husband frequently reminds me, thankfully!)  And you are not. And we should get over our guilt about needing a moment away and a moment with our girlfriends.  We have been created to need these relationships.  And with work and children and marriages and today's rush-rush-rush schedule we're losing those critical relationships.  They help us stay sane.  And that makes us a better mother and a better wife and a better employee. 

So let's find some time this week and get a sitter or mom or husband to manage the craziness at home and go see one of our best girlfriends - we'll be so much better if we do.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Super Destructors

We have opened up the floodgates.  Literally.  Our house has been protected somewhat from the traveling trio until yesterday.  We have a huge game room which is padded with foam tiles and stocked with fabulous toys and then GATED OFF from the rest of the house.  They're getting so big that we made the decision to open up the front rooms to the kids (we have an open concept house - main living areas all open, bedrooms off one hall which can be closed off with doors) so they have more room to run.  Gate was opened and now they have a large swath of territory in which they can run and............destruct. 

This was my email to my mother's club last week to give you an inkling of why there is terror in my voice as I type this entry:
"At what age should I worry that my kids are too destructive? My BGB are 17 mos old and literally are super destructors. They eat their books, pull up the foam tiles, try to knock their toys through the play room windows, rip up magazines. Friday Lillie ripped through that paper stuff that they put on the examining table at doctor's offices. I'm trying to get them to be better behaved b/c I'm so nervous about going to visit people but they're not particularly interested in obedience right now....... Is this a developmentally appropriate phase? When should I worry that they aren't minding? Do multiples tend to be more aggressive b/c they have each other to fight w/over toys? I just don't want to be the woman w/"those" kids - I want to encourage their independence and development but don't want them to eschew authority...."

I was encouraged, from numerous mothers of multiples, that they all went through this phase and that this is, in fact, normal.  However, they now have access to my china cabinet!  I'm thinking their board books are going to be the least of my worries after this week.........

Monday, March 21, 2011

Sleep. Deprived.

I am typing this while seated at my desk, behind my closed office door, in tears.  Literally exhausted to the point of tears.  But let me rewind.  11 nights to be exact.  When this bout started - March 10th. 

Bray was out of town.  The kids were up all night.  Teething or just joy over something new they learned, they were up, on and off all night.  I was up Friday morning at 4 am.  I didn't get to bed that same Friday until midnight because of kid sleep issues.  I was up 20 hours.  That is not a good place for me to be. 

In the past 11 nights, I have slept through the night once.  Yes, that's right:  ONCE.  A week ago I was up from 12:30 am to 4 am straight with the boys.  They just wanted to play. 

They have always been good sleepers.  This has not been an issue for us.  I am more exhausted today than I have been in their near 18 moths of living.  I am so tired I can not nap.  I realize this makes no sense.  But I tried.  Yesterday.  While they napped.  Nothing.  I just laid there and thought of the dozens of things that were not getting done because I was laying there - for an hour. 

This weekend they all had high fevers.  So in addition to the times they were not sleeping, I was setting middle of the night alarms to get up and give them Tylenol or cold wash cloths or pedialite Saturday and Sunday night.  And during the day they just cried.  I felt terrible for them, but I have to tell you, I felt pretty terrible for me too. 

I went to boot camp on Saturday morning and we did the work out in teams.  I partnered with one of my new favorite people, a mom of one son who is just a smidge older than my kids.  He's not been sleeping well lately either.  We had to give ourselves a team name.  We called ourselves Team Sleep Deprived.  We finished last.  Only by 6 seconds though.  And we finished.  After a week of no sleep. 

And today my girlfriend at work got engaged.  And we were going to have a celebratory lunch.  And she forgot.  No wonder, she's getting married in two weeks.  But I was so looking forward to going out and celebrating something that did not involve kids and might even include a champagne toast.  But instead, at 12:30, I walked down to the salad bar and got a salad.  Which I'm eating in tears at my desk. 

People say, "how do you do it?"  I don't.   I cry at my desk over a salad because I am so exhausted that I can't process rational thought.  How long can this phase last?  I have to hope not long because I honestly can't keep moving through life with any normalcy if I don't get some sleep. 

Friday, March 18, 2011

You Have to Buy the Lottery Ticket

My grandfather was a pastor and he was also quite a joke teller.  He had tons.  He also had a few one liners to remind you that having an active faith requires action.  He tell about a man that prayed every day, 'Lord let me win the lottery.'  And after years of praying he asked, Lord, 'why won't you let me with the lottery?'  And God said, 'you've never bought a ticket.' 

This, obviously, is not to say that if you pray for millions of dollars you'll win it, but it's a reminder that you can't just sit around saying "God please" and never doing anything to act upon His will and calling.  "God, please help me become a writer," won't get you anywhere if you don't sit down and put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard as the case may be).   "God please make me a successful attorney," won't be a believable prayer if you never go to law school or take the bar exam.  "God, if you'd just help me be the best mom in the world," can not be answered if you are never there for your kids or willing to sacrifice, pray, and commit. 

I know this can be a touchy issue.  Sometimes we as humans actually get in God's way.  I'm not suggesting that.  But just saying, "let God work," without any initiative on your end isn't going to be be a formula for greatness.  I just wrapped a study on James and he says faith without works is dead.  This doesn't contract the grace doled out all through the New Testament, but it does mean that paying lip service to your faith isn't enough.  Actions ARE required. 

James 2 - What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.


I don't know if you follow much Hollywood news, I know I don't, but a recent article caught my eye on my home page.  It was an article about Jodie Foster who has a film coming out in which she directed Mel Gibson, and the tag line was, "I knew the minute I met him I would love him the rest of my life."  For those of you living in a cave, Mr. Gibson has been on the bad end of a press firestorm this past year or more - from a divorce, to anti-Semitic comments, to an abusive relationship with a girlfriend, he's been under fire.  Rightly so. 

But regardless of what you think of him, I was moved by this article.  Ms. Foster and Mr. Gibson first worked together in 1994 and remained close friends.  She watched as all the bad stuff unraveled this past year.  And yet, when questioned about working with him recently, she had this to say, "I know that he has troubles, and when you love somebody you don’t just walk away from them when they are struggling."  (The article is reprinted here.)

Can you imagine what reprieve he felt when he read those words?  Unconditional, and very public, love and support by someone highly regarded in his community.  It didn't erase the bad press.  It didn't erase his bad acts.  But it must have given him some peace, some solace, to know there was a port in the storm.  A safe place to go.  Some love left. 

If you're in a patch where you feel unforgivable, if you feel you could never be loved, if it feels as though your actions have submarined any chance you might have at a bright future, know there is a resting place.  A place of love.  A port in the storm.  It doesn't remove what has happened, but it gives you a place to turn.  Hope that there is love left.

Deuteronomy 33 - There is no one like the God of Jeshurun, who rides across the heavens to help you and on the clouds in his majesty. The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms.

2 Samuel 22 - The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation. He is my stronghold, my refuge and my savior— from violent people you save me.

Psalm 25 - Guard my life and rescue me; do not let me be put to shame, for I take refuge in you.

Psalm 57 - Have mercy on me, my God, have mercy on me, for in you I take refuge. I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed.

Luke 15 - There was a man who had two sons. The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them. “Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. ...When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants.’ So he got up and went to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him. The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’  But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate.  For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Funk

I'm in a funk.  I haven't written because I'm in a funk.  It's hard to be witty or prolific in a funk.  It doesn't help that I am in serious sleep deprivation. The kids must be going through some terrible teething or separation anxiety becase they, really just the boys, are waking in the middle of the night & staying awake.  FOR HOURS.  The night before last they were up from 12:30 am to 4 am.  I'm in a non-functioning funk. 

I've been writing about waiting.  I feel like God is on the cusp of this big thing in my life and I am not known for my patience.  I'm tired of waiting and I feel like I can't move forward or backwards so I'm caught in between what is and what will be.  And I'm just plain tired. 

I'm in a world right now where I have two faces.  On the outside, everyone keeps saying "how do you do it?", "you're amazing," "you've got it all together," and on the inside I feel tired and stuck and overwhelmed and behind on everything that needs to get done. 

Fortunately, God has words for those of us feeling forelorn, overwhelmed, in a funk.  I pray they will sink into my soul today, and yours, and help spring me from this funk:

Psalm 13 - How long, LORD? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me?  How long must I wrestle with my thoughts?  Look on me and answer, LORD my God. Give light to my eyes... But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. I will sing the LORD’s praise, for he has been good to me.

Psalm 16 - LORD, you alone are my portion and my cup; you make my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance. I will praise the LORD, who counsels me; even at night my heart instructs me.  I keep my eyes always on the LORD. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.  Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest secure, because you will not abandon me to the realm of the dead, nor will you let your faithful one see decay. You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

Thursday, March 10, 2011


This morning I was called effervescent.  If you want to give someone a compliment, that's a pretty fabulous one.  I LOVE that word.  (Though it does make me think of an Alka Selzer tablet a little bit.)  But what made me laugh was when I looked it up on-line in the "free dictionary" to make sure I was spelling it right, this is the example it gave of effervescent:

effervescent - marked by high spirits or excitement;
"his fertile effervescent mind"; "scintillating personality";
"a row of sparkly cheerleaders"

A row of sparkly cheerleaders?  Hysterical.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Our Story: Part 1, The Courtship

We officially met the week after Thanksgiving 2003 at a concert at a small hole-in-the-wall though apparently he'd seen me a few weeks before as I was getting ready to leave for Italy.  He was with his brother and I was with my bible study girlfriends.  His brother had dated one of my friends.  Our first conversation was about attorneys and drilling in Alaska's ANWR.  I guess I shouldn't call it a conversation, it was a debate.  We had some seriously different perspectives.  We started dating the next week.  Neither one of us was looking - we'd both broken off relationships the previous spring.  And yet, there we were.  Dating - a lot.  I was absolutely taken.  I can't speak for him though we're married now so I guess he was eventually  

I was in love with him before three months was up.  He took a little longer.  We were SO different.  I loved the city and museums and fine dining and he loved the ranch and cattle and hunting.  But he was amazing.  Handsome, funny, smart, great kisser, interesting, curious, thoughtful, HONEST.  I'd not had a lot of experience with honesty in men I'd known.  I trusted him completely. 

We had so much fun.  We fought some, but mainly over "big" issues to figure out whether this was IT or not.  We traveled.  I went to the farm and ranch with him.  He went to galas and fancy dinners with me.  And we did our own thing too.  We loved our jobs and our families and our friends so we had really full lives.  He proposed on Halloween 2005.  We were both still in full costume after returning to my place from a Halloween party when he got down on one knee.  The gorgeous center stone in the ring was his mother's diamond from her original engagement ring (my father-in-law upsized it later).  He proposed on Saturday and I had a wedding date picked Monday.  Six months out.  Whirlwind planning.  Really happy times.

We had a beautiful morning wedding followed by a jazz brunch on May 6, 2006.  Everyone said they'd never seen a bride so happy - that I kept looking at everyone in the pews as I walked down the aisle & smiling & waving.  I was happy.  I was elated.  I was madly in love and couldn't believe God's grace at bringing this man into my life. 

Monday, March 7, 2011

Broken Record

Do you ever get a tune stuck in your head?  It seems everywhere you turn that dang song is blaring at you and you can't escape it and then you're imprisoned by the lovely bars of "Here's the story, of a man named Brady, who was busy with three boys of his own...." for the next however many hours or days it takes to replace it with something better.  (And yes, I'm sorry, I know it's stuck in your head now.)

Well I think I'm in the middle of the heavenly equivalent of the Brady Bunch song looping through my head.  It's happened before.  God will be driving home a point and no matter where I go there is a sermon or a study or a radio song or a friend's phone call that just reinforces the point and I can NOT escape it.  Granted, when God does it, it's for a greater purpose.  And I realize that.  But it doesn't mean I necessarily WANT to hear the message I'm being surrounded by.  In fact, more often than not, I'd rather not hear the words that are blaring at me. 

The message du jour (or du semaine as the case may be) is waiting.  Patience.  Waiting and Patience.  Patience and Waiting.  Really?  I'm so not in the mood.  And who is in this day and age?  Instant messaging, emailing, texting, digital information, downloads, Internet 24-7 -- we don't HAVE to wait.  We're no longer taught to wait.  And all that talk in the Bible about the virtues of waiting has begun to fall on deaf ears.  I'm the first to admit it.  I've lost the aptitude for patience.  My spirituality has suffered as a result.  So God's reminding me.  In no uncertain terms.  And I'm not in the mood to listen to this particular refrain.  But it doesn't matter because I can not escape it.

To begin with, I heard an incredibly powerful message from Beth Moore during her study of James entitled Between the Rains.  The very first point in the lesson was simple: "Be Patient."  It comes straight from James' instruction in Chapter 5.  She went on to explain how there is a season, which James was describing for his readers of the time, between the fall and spring rain.  It's the dry season.  It's when the crop grows.  And if the rain were to continue nonstop from fall to spring the crop would drown because what can grow in two feet of water.  That's our season of waiting.  That's the season when we are called by God to be patient.  The rain will come again but for now it's for us to wait.  That's what led me to my earlier post, a scripture from that evening, the lesson that God will act (as Beth says, "only if the sun rises") but for this time we are being called to actively await Him.

No sooner did I process that message than an email popped in my in-box a day later.  Our pastor sends out weekly emails & the FIRST sentence (much like Beth's FIRST bullet point) was this quote, "Quit trying to have a baby with Hagar and just wait on Isaac."  Wow.  I felt like God was telling me I was trying to have a baby with Hagar.  (For those of you not familiar with the reference, this is when Abraham doubted God would provide him a son, Isaac, and instead slept with his wife's servant to "help" God give him an offspring - Genesis 16.)  When we stop waiting and start trying to actively move God along, what havoc we wreak. 

He realizes our human nature naturally lends itself to impatience.  Why else would there be over 40 references imploring us to patience/be patient.  He knows it requires us to rely upon Him to have patience (Col. 1 - being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience).   Knowing all that, He calls us to wait.  To stop trying to speed up His plan to fit into a 2011 timeline and just wait.  Be patient.  He WILL act - only if the sun rises.

So now John Waller's tune is stuck on auto-replay in my head, right along with James 5, and I'll try to wait:

I'm waiting
I'm waiting on You, Lord
And I am hopeful
I'm waiting on You, Lord
Though it is painful
But patiently, I will wait I  will move ahead, bold and confident
Taking every step in obedience
While I'm waiting
I will serve You
While I'm waiting
I will worship
While I'm waiting
I will not faint
I'll be running the race
Even while I wait

Friday, March 4, 2011

Our Story: An Introduction

I enjoy television.  I don't see much of it these days but I have three guilty pleasures.  I DVR those three shows and watch them as time permits.  One recently featured the leading couple struggling with infertility.  As the lead character (let's call her Meredith) and her best friend (let's call her Cristina) visit, Cristina shares that she's been asked by a friend to be her baby's godmother.  Meredith encourages Cristina throughout the day to decline to serve as the godmother.  As the episode nears, Meredith stands in front of the newborn nursery and finally shares with her friend why she's asking her to say no, "It just seems like if you agree to be the baby's godmother, you're saying that I'll never have a baby of my own."

Those words flattened me.  Even though they are said by fictional characters, those words reflect a heartbreaking reality occurring in many lives tonight.  And that sentiment, that aching and sadness, that feeling that you may never have children, was incredibly real in my life for years.  Reading into everything that everyone says or does, feeling like any given action is a judgment on your own personal fertility struggles, happens.   

And so it led me to think that maybe it's time to share our story.  I've hesitated for some time.  Partly because it's still fresh.  And partly because I have friends whose infertility struggle ended differently than mine and they made the decision to either remain childless or to adopt.  My story of miracles doesn't at all diminish the miracles that God worked in their lives.  They also are people of great faith and God had a different plan in mind. 

So over the next few weeks, in addition to my ongoing random posting, I'll share our story.  I pray that it gives someone going through the same struggle hope.  I pray it will serve solely as a testament to God's faithfulness and miraculous power.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

God is Good

I am constantly amazed by people and their faith. 

It makes me stop and ask myself, "You think you have it hard?!?!"

I had a conversation with a triplet mom friend this past week.  I had failed to contact her lately and had no idea what had rocked her world.  Her husband was gone.  Left.  Absent.  No visits, no money, no nothing.  And the circumstances were heartbreaking.  During our conversation she said, "other than _____ being gone, things are good.  God has been good."  I had no words.  Of course our God is good.  I'm the first to say it.  But in the middle of THIS to be so calm and so confident in the faithfulness of our Lord.  Seven month old triplets, a looming house foreclosure, no job, and a terribly gone husband and her words were of God's provision for her during this time.  And I complain if Bray leaves for the weekend to go to the ranch?!?!  I have a faithful devoted husband who loves his family and is an incredible provider - why on Earth am I whining?  Last time I checked, self indulgence is not a fruit of the Spirit. 

I worry about my child's cough while my friend battles her child's cancer.  I doubt how to handle a job situation when a family member has lost a job.  I bemoan a long distance commute to see family when a dear person in my life has lost both parents. 

Five times in Matthew, Jesus calls people out for little faith:

Chp 6: If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’

Chp 8: The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!”  He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.

Chp 14:  But when he [Peter] saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”  Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”

Chp 16: Aware of their discussion, Jesus asked, “You of little faith, why are you talking among yourselves about having no bread? Do you still not understand? Don’t you remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered?"

Chp 17:  Then the disciples came to Jesus in private and asked, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

God is Good.  Regardless of the season.  He is good.  I recently heard a bible study lesson from James 5 - how the farmer waits for the autumn and spring rains.  In between those rains it's dry.  You don't see the rains from the heavens.  But God is still there, underground, working His miracles on those crops.  Whether you "feel" it today or not, God is there.  Working.  Being Good. 

This is not to discount your struggle.  Whatever it is, I know that it is real and it is hard.  But He is good.  He is faithful.  Remember it in the rain and in the drought. 

Psalm 27: I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.

2 Chronicles 6: Now, my God, may your eyes be open and your ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place. “Now arise, LORD God, and come to your resting place, you and the ark of your might. May your priests, LORD God, be clothed with salvation, may your faithful people rejoice in your goodness.
Psalm 116: Return to your rest, my soul, for the LORD has been good to you.

2 Peter 1: Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.  His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature...

Hosea 6

Let us acknowledge the LORD; let us press on to acknowledge him.

As surely as the sun rises, He will appear;

He will come to us like the winter rains, like the spring rains that water the earth.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

One Tough Sister

We went to the family farm this weekend.  We tried to spend as much of it outside as we could even though the weather was windier and grayer than we had hoped.  All of my kids are adorable but I learned that the lone sister is TOUGH as nails.  Among the accidents to befall her over the weekend: she stuck her hand in an ant bed and got 15 bites on her hand, she fell and hit her head on the patio, bad mommy accidentally got her skin pinched in the high chair seat belt, and she tried to eat the rocks off the driveway.  While her baby brother (yes by 30 seconds but he's totally the baby) cried about lord only knows what, mainly wanting to be held, she almost never cried and she was up and running the second after anything happened.  She's like a teeny little indestructible road runner. 

She's the fastest one of the bunch too.  I can't even always catch her! The thing she loves most is FREEDOM.  At home she's caged up behind a child proof gate in the mecca dream play room, but all she wants is O-U-T!  She cries and tries to break down the gate (literally).  She runs underneath your legs to the outside anytime you open the door to go in or out (and heaven help you when you catch her and put her back inside).  She is fearless.  She is acrobatic.  She is brave.  I have to tell you, I am so excited to have such a dynamic trailblazer for a little girl.  Some may say you can't tell what she'll be from her 17 month old personality, but I'm telling you, she's going to be fierce.  In the best way. 

I love my boys.  They are gorgeous and so incredibly loving, more affectionate than their female counterpart, but she is independent and strong.  And what a neat thing to see in one so young.  My prayer is that I don't pass on some of my fears and worries to her but instead allow her to spread her wings and fly where ever that strong spirit impels her.