Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Life is tough, but God is faithful!

I was at the bookstore the other day, looking for Christmas gifts, and I came across this book on the clearance table. It's called, "Life is tough, but God is faithful," by Sheila Walsh. I just finished the first chapter, and it is incredible. She talks about a cancer doctor's office she took a family member into, and there was a sign on the wall -

What Cancer Can't Do

Can't steal your memories.
Can't rob your joy.
Can't touch your eternity.
Can't remove you from God's care.
Can't stop you from loving and being loved.

I would say that you could substitute pretty much any heartbreak or hardship in there for "cancer."

She goes on to write, "This is the purpose of our lives. To learn to love God and to love one another. To let the light of Christ shine through the dark moments as well as in the glory days when everything is wonderful."

She also writes, "It is one thing to say that the Lord is my shepherd; it's quite something else to be unable to walk one more step by yourself, to lean on that staff, and to be held up. It's just as Job said, "My ears had heard of you before, but now my eyes have seen you." (Job 42:5)"

My new mantra -
Life is tough, but God is faithful.
Life is tough, but God is faithful.
Life is tough, but God is faithful.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Christmas dinner/dance

Friday night, Darrell and I, along with friends Dan and Gloria, went up to Oak Glen (about an hour from here, in the mountains) for an old-fashioned Christmas dinner and dance. We had a blast! It was held at an apple orchard/farm, in the back of their little store. It was all decorated for Christmas, and there were carolers entertaining everyone as we arrived. There were snacks before dinner, along with both hot and cold apple cider, coffee, etc. Dinner was scrumptious - apple-butter glazed ham, chicken pot pie, fresh green beans, red potatoes, and buttermilk rolls. After dinner, a band got on stage and led us in singing Christmas carols for a while, and at one point, they passed out hot, freshly-roasted chestnuts while we sang "Chestnuts roasting on an open fire..." Then they cleared the tables and chairs to make a dance floor, and they taught us all how to do a bunch of different dances. We certainly worked off our dinner, between the actual dancing and the laughing hysterically as we all tried to figure out the steps. Dessert was served during a dance break - warm bread pudding with rum sauce - delicious! A fun time was had by all. Anthony got to hang out with his auntie Chrissy and uncle Eric, whom he hadn't seen for a few weeks.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Thought for the day

The happiness of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts.
-Marcus Antoninus

Isn't that the truth?!?!

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Tree decorating

This is Anthony doing his best to try to help mommy decorate the Christmas tree. He just couldn't stand not to touch it! Those beads were just too tempting, and mommy was touching them and arranging them on the tree, so why couldn't he just try it???

Who me? I didn't do anything! I don't know what you're talking about! See? My hand is securely at my side - I'm just looking!

Monday, December 04, 2006

Disturbing Movie

Okay, so for Darrell's birthday, back in August, I subscribed us to Blockbuster Online, and I put a bunch of movies in the queue to be sent to us, 3 at a time. So this week, one of the movies we received was called "Match Point." If you plan to see it, don't read any further, because it will spoil all the fun for you!

Darrell put it in tonight, and we sat down to enjoy a movie together. For starters, it is a British film, and was rather flat from the get go. We kept watching, thinking it would get better, but soon the main character was married and then having an affair. Darrell kept asking me, "Did you know what this movie was about when you ordered it?" I assured him I didn't, and wondered myself what in the heck I was thinking when I put it on the list.

Then it gets better. The main character gets his lover pregnant, and when she starts pressuring him to leave his wife, he goes off the deep end. He kills the lover's neighbor, then his lover, making it look like a robbery gone bad. The REALLY disturbing part is that in the end, he gets away with it and goes on to have a child with his wife. That's how it ended. We were left with our mouths hanging open, dumbfounded, saying, "That's it????"

So I went online to read what the trailer said, wondering why in the world I would have thought this would be a good movie to rent. It was directed by Woody Allen - THAT'S why I thought it was a comedy! Clearly, not!

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Photo shoot pics

I love how the pics turned out. These are only a few of the 218 photos she gave us!

Anthony and mommy

I can't believe she caught a decent one of him in between his screaming and trying to take the hat off!

My sister Karen and my niece Emma. So cute in her stocking!

My mom, sisters and I all had pedicures a couple days before the photo shoot. My baby sister Kristina, of course, was the odd ball without red!

Brother-in-law Heath, sister Karen, niece Emma, then me, Anthony and Darrell.

The kids were so cute together. Anthony loves his little cousin and showered her with kisses all week, though not so much on the day of the photo shoot.

I love this.

My mom and her two sons-in-law!

All of us with grandma - 4 generations.

My mom and grandmother.

What a beautiful family!

The boys. Aren't they handsome?!

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Oops - forgot one thing

I forgot to tell you all about a very touching thing that happened. Yesterday I went and visited a patient whom I have had on service since July. She's an older woman with leukemia. In the beginning she and I didn't really connect, and I later found out she thought I was too young to be of any help to her. Over the weeks and months, we did form a strong connection, and I think I enjoyed our visits as much as she did. I had been visiting her weekly or biweekly, but then with the miscarriage and vacation, I hadn't seen her for about 3 weeks. When I walked into her room yesterday, it was clear to me that she was very near to dying. She was still awake and aware of everything, but was really having difficulty breathing. Her daughter was there visiting her, but left the room for a bit while I was there. When she left the room, my patient asked me why I had been gone for so long, and I was honest with her about the miscarriage. She said she thought something like that had happened and expressed her sorrow. Then she told me that she had been holding on, waiting for me to return before she died. Of course my eyes welled up with tears immediately! I told her what a pleasure it had been knowing her. We talked some more and then my visit ended. I told her that I would visit her again today.

This morning I checked my voicemail and learned that she died early this morning. How powerful is that?! I guess you just never know what an impact you can have on another person. I really felt blessed by this.

Doctor's appointment

Well, today was a rough one. Yesterday was actually really good - I even made it through the ENTIRE day without crying one time! But today was a different story. I had a hard time getting around for work, and then found myself crying in between every visit all day. I was driving to Manor Care to see some patients, and could not stop crying; had to pull myself together b/c I haven't seen enough patients this week and won't meet my productivity requirement if I didn't step it up today. I didn't even stop in to say hi to my friends working in our inpatient unit at Manor Care, because I knew I would just burst into tears as soon as they asked me how I was doing! I know it was because I was having my 2-week f/u appt with my OB/GYN this afternoon, but still I couldn't stop crying. Ugh!

I felt much better after the appointment. Dr. Bernard took a lot of time with me, answered my questions, spent a lot of time discussing my concerns, etc. Not once did I feel like he was rushing me or didn't have time for me. After talking about my medical history and everything, he felt convinced that I have something called Poly-Cystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), which is sort of a complicated problem. It affects a lot of things, but mostly all of the various hormones in our bodies. One of the main problems is it causes insulin resistance, which in turn can lead to an excess of male hormones in the body, which can prevent ovulation. Obviously this contributes to difficulty getting pregnant. But more importantly, the insulin resistance can lead to obesity, high cholesterol (both of which I already have), diabetes, and heart disease. So it's important to treat it. He started me on Glucophage (aka metformin), and said that quite often, this medicine alone is enough to straighten out the hormones and may regulate my cycle. It is a medication that helps control insulin and blood sugar. As a side benefit, with healthy eating and excercise, he said it may also help me lose weight. That would be wonderful!

If after a month or two on the medication, if my cycle is still not regular and I'm still not ovulating, he will start me on Clomid, which is supposed to help with ovulation. We are not supposed to start trying to conceive again until February at the earliest. I go back to see him on February 28. I felt really good about his plan for us, and I feel like he's committed to helping us get pregnant again and will do everything possible to make it a good pregnancy when it does happen.

I listened to a song today that helped get me through - here are the words:

I call, you hear me
I've lost it all
And it's more than I can bear
I feel so empty

You're strong, I'm weary
I'm holding on,
But I feel like giving in
But still you're with me

And even though I'm walkin' through
The valley of the shadow
I will hold tight to the hand
Of Him whose love will comfort me
And when all hope is gone
And I've been wounded in the battle
He is all the strength that I will ever need
He will carry me

I know I'm broken
But you alone
Can mend this heart of mine
You're always with me

And even though I feel so lonely
Like I have never been before
You never said it would be easy
But you said you'd see me through the storm

I do believe that - He is all the strength I will ever need. His grace is sufficient for me.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

We need a bigger bed

I don't know how well these photos really portray this...but I'll try to explain. Last night, Anthony woke up around midnight, crying hysterically. Darrell went to his room, got him and brought him to our bed, which we commonly do to get him back to sleep. Usually it only takes a few minutes to get him back to sleep, then he is transferred back to his own bed. Occasionally, he ends up staying in our bed, if we both fall asleep or if it's close to morning.

But last night, it took a while to get him to stop crying, and then when he would go back to sleep, he would wake up again within 10 or 15 minutes, crying again. After close to an hour of this, Darrell finally got up and took him to the living room, where they stayed on the couch for the next 3 hours. At one point, around 3 a.m., I did get up and offer to switch, so Darrell could get some sleep, but he sent me back to bed. When he did finally get back to bed, around 4 a.m., he brought Anthony to our bed. At some point closing in on 5 a.m., I began feeling like I was going to fall off the bed. I noted that Anthony was inching over onto my side of the bed (which is only a Queen sized bed). I couldn't sleep, so I got up.

Within 20 minutes of me being out of the bed, this was the picture - Anthony laying fully sideways at the head of the bed, with his feet pushing against Darrell's head/neck.

While co-sleeping worked quite well for breastfeeding, I would encourage those of you yet to have children to GET THEM OUT OF YOUR BED before they become toddlers!!!!!

Monday, November 27, 2006

First day back

Well, today was my first day back at work, after having been off for 2 weeks. It was not easy, but I survived. Things were pretty slow while I was gone, apparently, so I didn't get slammed with a lot of new patients, which was very nice. I was able to see a few patients, then spend some time getting my paperwork organized so I don't feel so frazzled and scattered. I have great co-workers who are very supportive, but sometimes it's almost harder when everyone keeps coming up and asking how you're doing. I mostly answered "I'm hanging in there," which is true, because I didn't want to lie and say "I'm fine" or "I'm good," yet I didn't want to fall apart either! I was exhausted after only a few hours, though, and I forget that my body hasn't completely recovered yet. I'll be glad when I get clearance from the doctor to start exercising again - walking in the mornings was really helping my energy level, and the Pilates was helping my back pain. I have my appointment with him on Wednesday, so hopefully he'll give me the green light.

I made a CD yesterday of songs about loss and grief. I included the song my sister gave us. It's really amazing how comforting music can be when it says exactly what you feel deep in your soul. I decided to make an extra copy to include in the scrapbook layout I will eventually make about the miscarriage.

Anthony's getting tired and cranky - time for bed!

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Glory Baby

Tonight I'm having a rough time, feeling very sad. I've been listening to some music and reading some reflections from other women about miscarriage. I know that I just have to go through this grief, that it's the only way to get to the other side of this, if there is such a thing, but sometimes I get tired of blowing my nose. It's amazing how quickly the body can heal itself, yet how slowly the heart heals. When we were in St. Louis, my sister Karen gave us a homemade CD, and on the cover is some scripture, Psalm 139, which talks about how we were knit together in our mother's wombs. She told me the CD had only one song on it, and that it might make us cry. I just finally got up the nerve to listen to it, and of course, it's making me cry. Here are the lyrics:

Glory Baby, you slipped away
As fast as we could say "baby, baby"
You were growing, what happened dear?
You disappeared on us, baby, baby

Heaven will hold you before we do,
Heaven will keep you safe
Until we're home with you
Until we're home with you

We miss you everyday, miss you in every way
But we know there's a day when we will hold you, we will hold you
And you'll kiss our tears away, when we're home to stay
We can't wait for the day when we will see you, we will see you
But baby, let sweet Jesus hold you, until mom and dad can hold you
You'll just have heaven before we do
You'll just have heaven before we do

Sweet little baby, it's hard to understand it
Cause we are hurting, we are hurting
But there is healing, and we know we are stronger people
Through the growing, and in knowing

All things work together for our good
And God works his purposes
Just like he said he would
Just like he said he would


I can't imagine Heaven's lullabies
And what they must sound like
But I will rest in knowing
Heaven is your home
And it's all you'll ever know, all you'll ever know


Pictures from our trip

Picking up where I left off...after a relaxing Monday, on Tuesday we got up and got around (which is a monumental task in my family), then headed into the city for a whirlwind tour of the highlights. We started off at the Gateway Arch downtown, which stands an amazing 630 feet tall. When you stand at the bottom and look up, it looks like it's going to fall over on you. We went on a brief tour of the museum in the ground under the arch, but didn't actually take the tram to the top. I've been up many times, but Darrell hasn't, so hopefully on a future trip we'll get to do this. Then we walked through the park over to Laclede's Landing, which is an older part of downtown which still has cobblestone streets. We stopped to grab grandma a bite to eat, then went back to our cars.

We drove through downtown over by the new Cardinals stadium and snapped a couple pics as we drove by. It is absolutely beautiful, and I have to say that even though I was so sad they tore down the old Busch Stadium, the new one is so awesome. I can't wait to go back and actually see a game there.

Next we drove to the Anhueser-Busch Brewery, which is their world headquarters. It is on an impressive 100-acre campus, with beautiful old brick buildings. They keep some of their Clydesdales there, in a gorgeous stable complete with two Dalmations which Anthony was so excited to pet. After the tour, of course, comes the Hospitality Room - AKA free beer. We got to taste some new stuff, including one called Winter's Ale, which has vanilla in it and was delicious.

After that, we went to the Galleria, one of the many shopping malls, and had dinner at the Cheesecake Factory. Yum! Even though it was only about 7:00 when we finished, we were all exhausted and headed home.

Wednesday was spent relaxing, doing some last minute shopping, and my mom and sisters and I went and had a spa pedicure. We had to make our toes look pretty since we were having photos taken barefoot on Friday! Wednesday evening we started some baking in preparation for Thursday's big meal.

Thursday was spent in the kitchen, with everyone pitching in. We sat down to a fantastic Thanksgiving dinner around 2:00 p.m., followed by football, dessert, more turkey, naps, etc. We had a grilled turkey, a grilled rib-eye roast, hand-made noodles in beef broth, mashed potatoes, gravy, homemade stuffing, green beans, homemade cranberry sauce, rolls, cranberry-walnut bread, and of course wine. For dessert, there was caramel-apple pie, raspberry pie, and pumpkin pie, all homemade, of course (including the crusts!).

Friday morning, we had a professional photographer come to my mom's house to take some family photos. We all dressed in jeans and white shirts, and had bare feet. I can't wait to see how they turned out, although Anthony was not exactly cooperative - he was so cranky, tired, and whiny. Hopefully she got some with him smiling and laughing! After the photos, it was time to pack up and head to the airport.

We got back home last night from St. Louis. While it was sad leaving family, it was so fun watching Anthony when we finally got home - he ran all through the house, exclaiming (in expressions we mostly couldn't understand) over everything, touching things, laughing, so happy to be home. He did ask many times last night and today, "Where's baby?" referring to his cousing Emma, and "Where's gramma?" Poor kid - so confused!

Anthony kissing his cousin Emma

Darrell and Anthony at the base of the Arch in St. Louis

My sister Karen, husband Heath, and baby Emma below the Arch.

My grandmother holding her great-granddaughter, Emma.

We had good flights back to Ontario, and were only 1 exit from home on the freeway when Darrell's front passenger side tire shredded. He had to pull over three times to literally tie it around the wheel cover to secure it, but by the grace of God, the tire did not go flat and we slowly but surely made it those last few miles home.

Monday, November 20, 2006

St. Louis

Well, here we are in St. Louis (actually, St. Charles, Missouri, about half hour/45 minutes from downtown). The trip was uneventful, but very long. We had to get up at 2:00 a.m. Friday morning, in order to leave the house by 3:30 a.m., to get to Ontario in time for our 6:40 flight. Only to get to Phoenix for what was supposed to be a 4 hour, but ended up being a 5 hour, layover, due to some sort of repairs being done on our airplane. Always an encouraging start when you're an hour late due to repairs! It was okay, though, because apparently there was an electrical fire at a plant close to the St. Louis airport, which caused them to lose power to the main terminal at the St. Louis airport, so we would have been delayed anyway. We were met at the airport by my mom.

That night we came back to my mom's and had chili (yum!). Anthony enjoyed exploring the new territory. We loved the cooler temperatures (40 degrees) and slept well. We were all exhausted from our long day of traveling, and I was still weak from surgery.

Saturday morning we had blueberry pancakes and pork sausage patties for breakfast. Then my mom and I headed out to do a little shopping. We stopped at Babies R Us, and got a booster seat and a gate for Anthony. Then we went to St. Louis Mills (an outlet mall like Ontario Mills), where they have an awesome scrapbooking store called Archivers. I'm like a kid in a candy store when it comes to that - it was almost overwhelming, there was so much to look at! Then we stopped for a Starbucks, then went in to Old Navy, where I got a sweater (much needed here), and my mom got me some new jammies. By the time we got back home, it was time for a quick dinner and then Kristina got in to the airport and had to be picked up. We hit the sack early, still tired from our trip.

Yesterday, we got around slowly, then went to church at First Baptist Church of Harvester, where my mom attends. The service was excellent, and it was what I really needed. One song in particular really spoke to me - it was like salve on my wounds. I was feeling really sad, because it was the one-week anniversary of the miscarriage. It wasn't the first time I've heard or sang the song, but it never meant so much to me. The words are

All of you
is more than enough for
all of me,
for every thirst and
every need,
you satisfy me
with your love,
and all I have in you
is more than enough

I don't know that there has ever been a time in my life when I have had to so completely depend on the Lord's strength and grace to get me through each hour of each day without completely falling apart.

After church, we went out to eat for a belated birthday dinner for me at an oriental buffet. It was incredible - complete with a chocolate fountain. Yum! Then we all came home and relaxed while my mom went to meet my uncle to pick up my grandmother, who came down from Illinois for the week. Then in the evening, my sister Karen, her husband Heath, and their beautiful daughter Emma (4 months old) arrived, and my mom went to pick them up. We all stayed up late chatting and oohing-over the baby.

Today we've been lazy, just hanging out and reminiscing, watching Anthony and Emma. He is enthralled with the baby and loves touching her. I'll take lots of pictures!

Thursday, November 16, 2006


I had my surgery last night. The anesthesiologist did a great job - I stayed asleep throughout the procedure (a normal expectation, but I have woken up twice in my life while under anesthesia), I woke up fairly easily afterwards (without cussing anyone out - again, history), and did not puke (a minor miracle in and of itself). The best part is that the surgery worked - I am having much less pain now, and the bleeding has slowed significantly. I am groggy today, and still cramping mildly, but it is nothing compared to the pain I had yesterday.

The hardest part physically now is that I am not supposed to lift anything heavier than 8 pounds for 2 entire weeks. That means I can't even lift Anthony to put him in the car, so I won't be able to take him to and from daycare the week after Thanksgiving, which will put a lot of strain on Darrell, as his work schedule is much more hectic than mine. And Anthony doesn't understand why mommy can't lift him up onto the bed when he wants to get up with me, which breaks my heart.

The doctor gave me the okay to fly tomorrow, as long as the bleeding is not too heavy, which it's not. Thank goodness for that! We need this trip more than ever right now. It will be so great just to get away and relax with family.

Thanks everyone for your continued prayers and support. Pray for safe and stress-free travelling tomorrow. Our flight leaves from Ontario at a bright 6:40 a.m., so we have to leave the house between 3 and 3:30 a.m. Ugh!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006


Well, I had my appointment with Dr. Bernard. He confirmed what I already knew in my gut - I need to have a D&C tonight. I don't know for sure yet what time, as the scheduler was out to lunch, so I'll get a call in a little while. It should be a short procedure, just in and out, and then I should be able to leave the hospital after about an hour. He sees no reason why I shouldn't be fine to fly on Friday, thank goodness. Pray that all goes well!

Medical bureacra-zy

Well, as if it isn't emotionally difficult enough to handle a miscarriage, the medical system here really does everything it can to make the physical part harder as well. Monday morning, first thing, I called my doctor's office to tell them I miscarried the night before. The lady said, "Okay?" and then was quiet, as if to say, "And?" I told her I wanted to see the doctor for an exam. She did not offer an appointment, but said she would take a message for the doctor. After 2.5 hours and nothing, when my cramps started becoming worse (in spite of the 800 mg ibuprofen I was already taking every 4 hours), I called back and talked to the nurse, who told me it was normal and that I could take ibuprofen. Didn't I just tell her what I was already taking? She offered to talk to the doctor and call me back, which she did, and asked for someone else. I told her I was the one who called, at which point she realized she had been given the wrong person's chart, so she wasn't even looking at my chart. She put me on hold, then came back and said the doctor wanted me to go for a "STAT" ultrasound - meaning urgent. That was at 10:30 a.m. She told me the radiology place would call me to tell me when and where to go. At 2:30 p.m., they finally called and said to be there at 3:30 and to drink 48 oz of water before I went and then hold my bladder. I got there, and of course they didn't call me in until 4:05, so I had to let the edge off my bladder 3 times just to survive.

So I had the u/s, and the tech said it all looked good as far as the miscarriage, that it didn't look like there was any tissue left behind (which would require a D&C - surgery where they go in and scrape the inside of the uterus). She faxed a handwritten report to my doctor's office before I left. I called the doctor's office, this being around 4:45 p.m., to make sure they received the report, knowing their office closes at 5 p.m. The lady told me they got the report, it was sitting on the doctor's desk, but he was still seeing patients, so he would call me later. By the time I got home, the doctor had called my home phone and left a message, not saying the results, but I couldn't call back because the office was closed and the phones were already turned off.

So that evening (Monday) I started to run just a low-grade temp, never went higher than 100.6, but considering I was taking ibuprofen regularly, it concerned me a bit. Plus, I was still having significant cramping. By Tuesday morning, the cramps were getting really bad. So first thing Tuesday morning, I called the doctor's office and reported the increasing pain and the low grade temp, and again requested to be seen. She told me the doctor was in surgery all day and was unavailable all day, so if I wanted to be seen, I would just have to go to the emergency room. She didn't even offer to let me talk to the nurse, let alone offer to page the doctor and ask him what to do.

By this point, I'm bawling my eyes out. I was in so much pain, and I was so frustrated I just felt like throwing my hands up in the air. I did NOT want to go sit in an ER waiting room for hours while I'm in pain and hysterically crying. I wanted to call Darrell, but he was in court in the morning, and I felt bad interrupting him, so I didn't. So I called my insurance company, Kaiser, to see if perhaps I could get in to see my primary care physician (whom I still haven't ever met). They wanted me to see an OB/GYN, so they insisted I call around to some other OB offices to see if anyone could see me. Of course, they all said no, because I was Dr. Bernard's patient and they didn't want to get involved. At this point I called my boss, who's an RN, to get her advice. She really wanted me to go to the ER, but I really didn't want to. So I called Kaiser back to see if I could just go to Urgent Care, and they gave me an appointment at their Indio office with a family practitioner.

Thank God they did that. First of all, the guy was so kind and compassionate. He took a LOT of time with me, listened to my whole story - incredulous that I was having such a hard time just getting to see a doctor. He did a complete pelvic exam, and thank goodness he did, because there was still some tissue hanging out in there (sorry if TMI), which he was able to pull out with a long utencil. He took cultures, too, because he felt strongly that I was already starting to get an infection because of the tissue having stayed in there for a couple days after the miscarriage. He said the pain and low grade fever were caused by the infection. So he started me on Augmentin and gave me some Vicodin for the pain, but told me if my fever went over 101, I would need to go to the ER and probably get admitted for IV antibiotics and a D&C. He also said he wanted me to f/u with the OB.

So I called the OB's office again, told them what the other doctor did and said, and the magically offered me an appointment for 11:30 a.m. today. Unfortunately, this morning upon waking, I was in so much pain I could hardly walk or stand up straight. I took my vicodin and ibuprofen, and thank goodness it has kicked in; the pain isn't gone, but I can stand it now. Otherwise, I would've had to give in and go to the ER. So now I'm just waiting for my appointment, and we'll go from there. My gut tells me they may really need to do a D&C, because the cramping is so bad that there must still be some tissue left. My fever is completely gone, so I don't think it's the infection getting worse.

Anyway, thank you for your continued prayers and thoughts. I'm gonna go lay down!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

The tornado that is my life

At least, it feels like a tornado. Those of you who've been in one will understand what I mean. During a tornado, there are extremes - one minute the air feels warm, the next minute it feels cold; one minute, things feel totally calm and quiet, the next minute, there's chaos. That's sort of how my life feels right now. One minute, I feel pretty peaceful, I'm doing okay, I'm even able to laugh; the next, I'm falling apart because I remember how just 3 days ago I was thinking of baby names and looking at pregnancy magazines and looking forward to buying some cute maternity clothes for spring, now wondering if there's something wrong with my body and maybe I'll never be able to have another child.

I do have to say that everyone's prayers are working - I do feel that God is holding me right now, that He is comforting me and giving me strength and peace. Even when I am falling apart, crying, asking questions like, "Am I being punished for something?" or "Did I do something to cause this?" or "Is my husband going to feel like this is somehow my fault?" - even then, I do not feel alone.

Please keep on praying for us. I'm going to try to go back to work tomorrow, for just 2 days before we leave for St. Louis for our Thanksgiving trip. I have no idea how it will be going back to work - it may be quite difficult, partly because everyone knew I was pregnant (I've already asked my boss to tell everyone we lost the baby so I don't have to say it a hundred times), but also because of the nature of my job - I'm talking to people whose loved ones are dying, helping them with their grief. That might be a big challenge at first, seeing as how I'm in the middle of an ocean of grief myself. I'm just going to try, but if it gets to be too overwhelming, I'll stop and try again the next day. I won't be much help to anyone if I burst into tears the minute they start sharing their grief with me!

I had an ultrasound yesterday afternoon. The tech said it looks like everything from the pregnancy did come out, so I shouldn't need a D&C. Beyond that, I know little, because the doctor's office was closed by the time I got home and realized the doctor had already called. The tech did mention that my uterus is tipped the wrong way - it's supposed to tilt up, but mine tilts down. She couldn't say whether or not that could contribute to a miscarriage or to the preterm labor I had with Anthony - put that on the list of questions for the doctor. I will call first thing when the office opens and hopefully at least talk to the doctor today, or maybe go in for an appointment. I'm also going to be good to myself today and go get my hair cut.

I want to thank all of you who have called to check on me - please keep calling. I may not have the energy to call you, but I do appreciate the phone calls and support.

Sunday, November 12, 2006


I miscarried our baby earlier tonight - around 6:30 p.m. on Nov. 12. I don't think I have ever felt so broken in my entire life. I can't stop crying. I can't believe it's real. I can't believe it's only been 2 weeks since we learned I was pregnant, and I am amazed that I could get so attached in such a short period of time, that I feel this much grief. It's as though there is this well of grief inside me that has no bottom. I am glad it happened on the 12th, instead of the 13th on my birthday, but I'm not sure it really makes any difference in the long run. Please pray for peace and comfort.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Prayers needed

Pray for us...I am pretty sure I am having a miscarriage tonight. I have been spotting all day, and talked to the doctor earlier. Tonight it's gotten much worse, along with cramping. We are completely heartbroken. I have been begging God all day to save this baby, but if it's not meant to be, then we just need a lot of comfort and peace.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

These are the days...

...of morning sickness, to-the-bone fatigue, and irritability. That's right, the Clark family is pregnant! I actually haven't been feeling too terribly bad overall. The queasiness comes and goes, but is NOTHING compared to last time around, at least not so far. Part of the fun is that we don't know how far along I am, since my body hasn't really performed in a regular fashion ever since I had Anthony, if you get my drift. So I don't know if the mild nausea is just because I'm so early on, or if I'm truly lucky and it's just not going to be as bad this time! My migraines were really bad for about 3 weeks - that was actually one of the reasons I decided to take the pregnancy test - I was getting them every day - but I started using progesterone cream last week, and I haven't had a migraine in about 4 or 5 days now - don't know if it's coincidence or the cream, but whatever - at least I'm not having to use my medicine. Plus, from what I've read, the progesterone cream helps prevent miscarriage and preterm labor.

The fatigue is what's killing me - I can honestly say the only other time I have felt this exhausted was the last time I was pregnant. It's just really hit me the last few days. Sometimes I'm so tired I literally cannot even lift my arms. I get up at 5:00 a.m., to meet my friend at the high school at 5:30 to walk a couple miles on the track. I do fine til that's done, but when I get back home, I fall onto my bed and it's a real struggle just to get a shower, put on makeup and get dressed, let alone get Anthony ready for daycare, pack my bag full of snacks and lunch, load up the car, and make it out the door. By midday, I can hardly concentrate on anything because all I really truly want is to close my eyes and go to sleep.

I saw the nurse at my new obstetrician's office on Monday, and went for my prenatal labs. She gave me a referral for an ultrasound at the imaging place, but the soonest appointment I was able to get is December 5. I see the doctor next Thursday, the 16th, but unless he either does a quick ultrasound in his office or orders a stat exam from the imaging place, it looks like we won't know for sure how far along I am or when the due date is until Dec. 5. Patience is certainly NOT my strong point, as you all well know, so this is driving me crazy!!! I want to know what stage the baby is at, plus I really want the reassurance of seeing a heartbeat!

Anyway, I do have some pics of Anthony and my friend Deanna's baby to post, but I'm too tired to upload them tonight...maybe tomorrow!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

halloween at daycare

And the award for World's Laziest Mother goes to....me! As you can see in the photos, Anthony was one of only two children at daycare without a costume. At least I put a halloween t-shirt on him - it said "Mummy knows best." Jana was the one who painted his face - why didn't I think of that??? Anyway, I figured, A., I didn't have time, B., why spend money on something he's still completely unaware of, and C., he's oblivious and not old enough to go trick-or-treating (nor do I want him eating a bunch of candy). He had fun, nonetheless, and look at what a cute cat he made! I promise, next year I'll do better.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

my niece

Look at how completely adorable my little niece Emma is, now at 3 months old. I can't wait to meet her at Thanksgiving!!

fall fest

Yesterday there was a Fall Family Fest in LaQuinta, so we went for a little bit. We got Anthony's finger prints done (Senator Battin's office was doing it), then walked around looking at the booths. Anthony played in the jumper, although it's hysterical to watch, because he can hardly even stay standing, let alone actually jump. He thinks it's great fun, though, just to sit there and get bounced by the bigger kids jumping around him. We took pictures in the little pumpkin patch they had set up, and he went in the petting zoo for a little bit. He was a little scared of the animals, but it was cute. They had goats, chickens, bunnies, a pig...a regular miniature farm!

Afterwards, we stopped at Trader Joe's for some groceries, then went by Frankie's Fresh Fish and got some sushi to take home for a late lunch. I LOVE it that Darrell eats sushi now!

This morning, I made blueberry pancakes and sausage links for breakfast. Darrell went to the first service at church, and I'm leaving when he gets home, to go to the second service. We're going to try this out, because for one thing, Anthony cries every time we leave him in the toddlers class at church, and also, so many of the other kids have been sick and I don't want him to get sick. I know it's hard, but it annoys me when the other parents drop their kids off with snotty noses.

Don't know what we're doing this afternoon. It's been such a beautiful morning, but I think it's going to be hot again this afternoon - was still in the mid-90's yesterday afternoon.

Friday, October 27, 2006


Woo hoo!!!! The Cardinals have done it! They won the World Series, at home in St. Louis, in front of all their fans. They are second in all of baseball for most world championships. Anthony and I watched the game, and it was so cute to see him yelling "Go Cardinals!," although only I could understand what he was saying. Next year, he'll really be able to get into it!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

two down, two to go

Woo-hoo! The Cardinals shut out the Tigers last night, 5-0, in the first of three games in St. Louis. If the Cards can win tonight and tomorrow night, they can win the World Series on home territory. That would truly be awesome! Suppan is pitching tonight, so they have a good chance. I don't know who's pitching tomorrow night, but maybe it will be the rookie who pitched and won game 1 for them. Fly redbirds fly!!!!

Monday, October 23, 2006

To St. Louis we go

Well, the Cardinals couldn't pull it off for Game 2, so now they're tied 1-1 with Detroit. But we're headed to St. Louis for the next 3 games, where hopefully, the redbirds will take them all! Go Cardinals!!

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Who's laughing now?

The USA Today ran an article making their predictions for the World Series. The author wrote that the Detroit Tigers' "biggest obstacle to a championship will be keeping a straight face," and predicted that the Tigers will win in 3 games (in a best of 7 series - go figure). Who's laughing now? I sure didn't see the Tigers struggling to keep a straight face tonight as the Cardinals knocked them right off the stage in a 7-2 victory. A rookie pitcher went 8+ innings for the redbirds, keeping the Tigers to 2 runs on 4 hits. The Cards had 2 homers, including a two-run shot from Pujols in the 3rd inning. Keep it up Cardinals!!!!

1 to 10...

Anthony is learning to count...

Friday, October 20, 2006

World Series or Bust!!!!!

Miracles do happen...look at the Cardinals! A team who won only 83 games during the regular season is NOT supposed to go to the World Series. A team who waits until the last day of the season to clinch a berth in the playoffs is NOT supposed to go to the World Series. And NO team has ever in history won game 7 of the NLCS on the road after having lost game 6.

But this is the St. Louis Cardinals we're talking about - they do it the hard way, but they get it done! They won their 17th league pennant in franchise history, which is second only to the NY Yankees (who've won an amazing 38!).

They won last night's Game 7 the hard way too - waiting until the 9th inning to break the 1-1 tie with a 2-run homer by catcher Yadier Molina. But it wasn't over - the bottom of the 9th was nerve-racking, as the bases got loaded just in time for power hitter Carlos Beltran of the Mets. But the Cardinals' reliever got the job done. Talk about excitement!!!

So...we'll see the Tigers in the World Series beginning Saturday. Go redbirds!!!!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Ugh - game 7

The Cards didn't come through tonight, despite two doubles in a 9th inning attempt at a comeback, falling 4-2 to the Mets. So on to game 7 we go, hoping to clinch a ticket to the World Series starting on Saturday.

Meanwhile, my son is fighting bedtime like it's the ultimate enemy, poor kid. He's got two molars coming in, but I gave him motrin, so I don't think that's the problem at this point. We have GOT to get him back into some consistent routine, b/c not only is this miserable for him, but it's stressing me out! He used to go to bed so peacefully...ah, the good ole days.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Go Cardinals!!!!!

There's nothing like baseball in the fall...especially when my Cardinals are in the mix! For those of you in the dark, the redbirds are fighting for the National League Championship right now. They were the underdogs going in, but they're up three games to two over the Mets as of tonight, and are headed back to New York for game 6 (and 7 if needed). The World Series starts on Saturday against Detroit. Fortunately, for the sake of peace in my home, Darrell is a Yankees fan, not a Mets fan; otherwise things could be ugly right now! Go Cards!!!!

Monday, October 16, 2006

Love affair with a scarecrow

This is the funniest thing ever! I have this scarecrow standing by the fireplace, as part of my fall decorations, and for the first month that she stood there, Anthony ignored her. All of a sudden, the last couple days, he has a newfound fascination, and he keeps going up to her, touching her straw hair, her eyes, her nose, her hat, her hands, and then he leans in and gives her a big smooch right on the lips! It cracks me up!

Birthday Dan

Saturday was our friend Dan Bennett's 50th birthday. Fun was had by all - especially when we watched him open the Victoria's Secret gift box, and later when he tried on the new waders he got for fly fishing. We are blessed to have Dan and Gloria in our lives.

Friday, October 13, 2006


Yay! We got our plane tickets for Thanksgiving today. We're headed to St. Louis to be with my mom. I haven't been back there in several years, and Darrell hasn't been at all. This will be the first time my grandmother gets to meet Anthony! We fly out the Friday before Thanksgiving, and return the day after Thanksgiving. I can't wait to take Darrell around to show him my old haunts, and see some of my old friends. Turkey day's coming!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Fall in New England

You have got to check out my sister's blog and see these photos of her and my niece in front of the giant scarecrow! It is so cute! I wish I was there - fall in New England - what could be better???

Bumps and Bruises

Anthony has been beat up by a little girl at his daycare! Earlier in the week, she scratched his face, then today she slugged him with a lego. What up? Jana said he was hardly phased by it, but look at his poor little face! The little girl always greets me when I go to the daycare, so when I saw what she did today, I told her she's not supposed to give Anthony owies!

You can see he's enjoying his apple, although just now I had to ask him, um, what happened to your apple? He just went running down the hall to find it - I'm scared! Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Whine and Tears

Are children born with a special whining tone that is created at just the right decibel level and tone to grate on the parents' nerves? I think so. I have read in parenting magazines that the average toddler cries for about 2 hours out of the day. Sometimes I think mine saves it all up for the evening time, a special gift just for me. I pick him up from daycare, where Jana tells me what an angel boy he is. Then we walk in the door at home, and he turns into a completely different child for a couple hours. Perhaps he is punishing me for leaving him all day? My friend (who has no children) tried to make me feel bad the other day because I admitted I don't fix my son breakfast in the morning; instead, I let him eat at daycare, where he often gets bad-carb cereal or sugar-filled pop-tarts. Maybe THAT'S what it is. I don't know, but it definitely has taught me patience.

Of course, then he turns on the tears. I mean, big huge crocodile tears in those beautiful gigantic brown eyes of his with the extra-long eyelashes, and how could I possibly be mad? Right now he's in between fits of tears, in his room, reading a book, going "Big E, little E." Of course, only I can understand him, as it sounds something like "Uh ee, uh-uh ee." I can't even tell you how adorable it is!

Ahhh...parenting...it certainly is the adventure of a lifetime!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Nothing special

No big news to report, just everyday stuff. No new pictures; although, I should have taken the camera with me tonight. Anthony and I picked up Deanna and we went out for ice cream, and I swear I don't know how my son managed to get SO MUCH ice cream on his body. I mean, it was EVERYWHERE! When we came home and I undressed him for a shower, I was shocked at how much of his body was covered with dried, sticky ice cream. Darrell is at a financial bible study tonight - it's the same one we did together in the spring, only now he's co-leading it, which is great. They say the best way to really learn something is to teach it, after all.

I'll try to take some pics and maybe another video in the next few days.

Sunday, October 08, 2006


Your attention, please! I owe my husband an apology. I stand corrected. My dear husband is offended, because he does, apparently, read my blog, and informed me that he has a shortcut on his desktop both at home and at work!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Mom and Dad's night out

Darrell and I got out last night, for what seems like the first time in quite a while. Actually, it may have been the first time since his birthday in August, so it has been almost 2 months, I guess. We actually hadn't planned it, but it was so gorgeous outside, nice and cool, and I was in a party mood, so I called Dan and Gloria, who were happy to babysit. We dropped Anthony off at their house around 7:15, complete with jammies and an Elmo video (we even included a movie for Dan and Gloria to watch after Anthony went to sleep).

Then we went down to The River and had sushi at Maki Maki. Did you catch that? My husband ate sushi!!!!! Oh my gosh! Old dogs CAN learn new tricks! He let me order everything, and he actually liked it!

Then we went to the theater and saw the new movie, Departed. It was so good! I highly recommend it. It's about the Irish mob in Boston, and it has Jack Nicholson, Matt Damon, and Leonardo Dicaprio in it. They were all great. It was long, over two hours, but went fast and so worth it.

I haven't been to the movie theater at The River for quite some time, and I was shocked by the swarms of teeny boppers there. Oh my gosh, one day my son is going to be a teenager! It kind of freaked me out! I'm scared to think about ever having a little girl!

We got back to Dan and Gloria's at about 12:20 a.m. Anthony was sound asleep on the living room floor. Dan and Gloria reported having had a great time with him. He was so busy chasing their dog Julio around that he didn't even watch his Elmo video.

Gloria and I were planning to go hiking this morning, but my legs had gotten really sore over night from running on the treadmill the night before last, and I woke up all night with cramps in my lower legs. I figured hiking probably wasn't the best idea this morning, although I do want to get outside and enjoy the cool weather. I cooked breakfast, but still haven't had my coffee - might need to go meet Deanna at the coffee shop!

Thursday, October 05, 2006


This is from a couple nights ago, when Anthony and I were dancing to some tunes. By the time I got out the camera, though, he'd had about enough dancing. You'll hear his "No" loud and clear! Mom - you'll be happy to hear him say "Gramma."


Hey, I notice almost no one has been leaving comments on here or emailing me when you read my blog. I want to know you're out there, being entertained by my musings! I don't even think my own husband reads it! :)

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Deposition and Work Changes

Today was my deposition - thank God is it over! Everyone's prayers helped a lot, because I really felt confident and, for the most part, calm, most of the day. I did battle nerves this morning on the way, although even then, I knew the Lord was with me and I did have peace in my heart. By near lunch time, my patience was running a little thin and I felt myself becoming frustrated with the child's attorney's questions. But after lunch, thankfully, he only had another 40 minutes or so of questions. Then it was the father's turn to ask questions. I know it was a God-thing, because he fumbled all over himself and could barely put together a coherent question. After a while of struggling to try to question me, he finally just gave up, and we were done shortly after 3 p.m. What a load off my shoulders! One of my attorneys told me afterwards that I had done great and that he hadn't had a better witness in over a year! That made me feel good, and I know it was because I was not alone in there! Thank you everyone who prayed for me!

I'm kind of bummed out about work this evening, though. Two of my favorite co-workers are both leaving; one's last week is next week, the other is leaving at the end of October. I work well with both of them, but more than that, I have become friends with them and will miss them both. It's interesting how people come into our lives at certain times.

I've heard it said that people come into our lives for a reason, a season, or a lifetime. I know that God sends people into our lives to teach us things, bless us, meet our needs, open our eyes to things, etc. Both of my co-workers have a lot of wisdom, are great to talk with, are great communicators, and I just genuinely enjoy being around them. From one of them, I have been reminded to let go of regret, forgive myself, live each day to the fullest, and to quiet myself more often. He has also reminded me to be more honest with myself, procrastinate less (HUGE for me!) and to rely on God for strength. From the other, I have been reminded of how important relationships are, how much I need to stop and spend quiet time in prayer, and how refreshed I can feel after being with other women who share my faith. I am thankful for them having touched my life and for their friendship, and hopefully that will continue, but I know that often doesn't happen when people go their own ways.

Anthony has been talking up a storm tonight. I was sitting on the couch, and he climbed up there on my lap, just jibber-jabbering away. I couldn't understand any of what he was saying, but he was carrying on a full conversation. Oh so cute! I'll try to take some photos in the next few days.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Pray for me!

Today I meet with my attorney to prepare for my deposition, which is scheduled for tomorrow morning at 9:00 a.m. I am really trying to focus on staying relaxed and peaceful. I just did a breathing meditation and am feeling pretty good right now! Pray specifically that I will trust the Lord to fight this battle for me, and that I will let go of any fear or anxiety. Thanks all! I love you!

Monday, October 02, 2006

Toddler Bed Woes

Well, Anthony now has a toddler bed, and this is what happened. I put him to bed in it last night, and after fussing for about 10 minutes, he fell asleep. And the first couple times I checked on him, he was fine. However, after he'd been asleep for about 3 hours, I went in and this picture is what I found - him still sound asleep, with his feet on the floor! I gently moved him back onto the bed, but the remainder of the night was filled with me having to get up because he was crying. Most every time, when I got in there, he was sitting up in bed or nearly falling off the bed. Finally, at 4:50 a.m., I took him to our bed, but by that time, it was nearly time for me to get up anyway, so after laying there to get him back to sleep, I got up. I'll be tired tonight! Posted by Picasa


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