Growing up so fast

I’ve read a few blog posts lately that talk about the tragedy of losing a child and also about the fear that comes with the next pregnancy. I wanted to tell a brief story about my own experiences with this as well as the emotional turmoil of having a baby daddy who could care less. The point of this isn’t a pity party but to show what good can come from so much strife.

I look at my oldest and I realize that he’s not a baby anymore. He’s still my baby, but he is getting older. He can communicate his needs and man is he independent. The last 3.5 years have flown by and looking back I can see that having him is where my life truly began.

The situation around his conception and birth was far from ideal. I was living with my ex husband hoping to work things out when I found out I was pregnant. He, of course, wanted nothing to do with me or the baby and I found myself totally and completely depressed. He and I had been pregnant once before right after we had got married and it ended in a miscarriage early in the pregnancy. This misfortune marked the beginning of a failing relationship. It left an emotional scar that will never be completely healed that resurfaces in the form of fear and unease during each subsequent pregnancy.

I openly admit that I have struggled with depression and anxiety disorders my entire life but during my pregnancy with Merrick they reached their pentacle. I felt totally lost. Here I was, living with a man who I deeply loved and was once loved by in return and who could now care less about me or our unborn child. Not to mention that I was in constant fear of another miscarriage. It was devastating. Since we were no longer married, people asked me if I even knew who the father was which only made me feel worse. Of course I knew and so did he. Parts of his family still deny he is their kin because of the situation.

I was pretty sure that my life was falling apart around me at this point and I distinctly remember feeling like I couldn’t go on.

Then it happened. He was born.

I remember the day he was born. I remember the long labor before his arrival. I remember my arms being to weak to hold him when they finally handed him to me. I remember him laying on my chest and looking at me with those beautiful innocent little eyes. I remember it all like it was yesterday.

Having him turned my world around. Holding him in my arms made my problems disappear. It was a cure for all the depression and worries that had built up inside of me. It was an intense feeling of relief and hope that washed over me.

Now I look at this little boy and it amazes me that he has grown so much. I can’t believe Merrick is almost 4. Not a day goes by that I am not overwhelmed by my love for him and Silas. I am continually amazed at his abilities and skills. He’s growing up so fast and I want nothing more than to raise him so that he will be a good person full of compassion and love.

After all of this is said…I can’t see how anyone could deny the existence of God if they have ever comforted a sick child or looked into their child’s eyes for the first time and felt true, unconditional love. How can you deny it when this precious gift has been handed to you? I, of course, doubted the existence of any great and supreme being after my miscarriage, I couldn’t understand why God would want anyone who wanted a child so badly to endure so much pain. After holding my sons there is no way I could ever deny it again and I am thankful everyday for the opportunity to be a part of something so beautiful. Experiencing the pain that came with the miscarriage made the birth of my son that much more amazing to me. It forced me to see the miracle that lay before me in a different light. I only wish I could have realized this sooner and I hope that people going through a bad situation can see the light at the end of the tunnel and know that things will get better.

Merrick Mama loves you and your brother more than you could ever possibly know. I look forward to seeing the people you both become.

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Feels like forever

Silas and his dada

This is a few weeks old, but there he is...the puking babe.

Feels like forever since my last post.

My youngest son, Silas, has been sick for 8 days now and he seems to finally be getting better. This makes me very excited as a projectile vomiting 6 month old is absolutely no fun. I am thankful that he is finally getting better and I pray that he will stay better this time instead of getting sick in a few days like he did last week.

It is also getting very close to the end of the semester, which really only means that I have a ton of work to get done and only about a week and a half to do it in. So, you may be asking yourself why I am writing a blog post rather than doing my homework…and the answer is quite simple, which would you rather do? Fun blog post or boring homework?

We were planning on moving next week, but things just didn’t work out. I’m not terribly upset by this but it would have been nice to get away from this little town. I figure that when the time is right we will be able to move without all of the problems and setbacks that we experienced this time. My attempted move and the garage sale that failed miserably because of it, has however, turned out to be a blessing for a few lucky people.

Instead of putting everything back in storage I have decided to donate all of my baby items, most of which are practically new to a young lady who is in desperate need. I was only asked if I could donate some newborn clothes, but when I found out that she has nothing for this baby I couldn’t help but feel like I should give her all of the extra baby things that I have had in storage for the last 6 months. At least now they will be with someone who really needs them.

A couple of the bows I've made in the past

In case you don’t already know, I make hair bows, tutus, pillowcase dresses and other small items for little girls. Some of the things I have made already have been in storage for over a year, since I stopped traveling to craft shows. I have decided that they, much like the baby items, aren’t doing anyone any good sitting in my garage. So far I have found about 12 little girls who’s parents are unable to provide a Christmas for them and I am splitting up what I have left between them. I really hope that by donating these items to these children that they will have a wonderful holiday like I did as a child.

I have received so many emails from parents who cannot afford to provide for their children this holiday season which makes me realized how blessed I am that we are able to provide for ourselves and our children. We are lucky that Chase has a good job and that he does whatever he has to in order to ensure that we have a roof over our head and food on our plates. I honestly couldn’t ask for a better husband and father to my boys.

Finding my faith

When I was a child I assumed that I was a Christian, simply because that’s what I was told I was and that’s what everyone I knew was. I went to church with friends, more for socializing than for learning or worship, but never really felt like I fit in. Once I became a teenager I realized that I didn’t have to be a Christian and that I was capable of deciding for myself what I believed to be true in terms of a higher being.

I have always known that I believe in “something” and I have always felt that this “something” was watching over everyone. I also knew that I didn’t agree with some of the things in Christianity and that I have yet to meet a person who claims to be a Christian and practices what they preach. They all talk about being good people and how it’s important to let God judge people, yet no one I meet leads that life. (I would like to point out that I am not in any way coming down of Christians or arguing their beliefs and I am in no way saying that every Christian acts this way, as I’m sure there are a great many who lead very moral Christian lives.)

Admittedly, I have prayed to God on many occasions for help, even though I had no idea what I really believed. I even prayed for guidance as a woman at Wal-Mart instructed me to do after I would not accept Jesus right there on the baby food isle. She assured me that if I prayed he would lead me to him; I just had to be willing to see it when he did.

A few weeks later, my husband decided to research Islam. This research was not meant to be a life changing event, just merely a want for knowledge on the subject. He and I share the belief that you can’t judge things such as this without at least some true, unbiased knowledge on the subject. We both were tired of hearing people bash Muslims and call all Muslims terrorist; so his research began.

In the beginning I was less than interested in learning about Islam, I didn’t mind being ignorant, it just meant that I kept my mouth shut about something I knew nothing about. However, since it was something my husband was so interested it, I couldn’t help but listen to him when he spoke about it. Our talks at night before bed sparked my interest in the subject and I found myself reading about Islamic beliefs and practices for hours on end. It seemed like the more I read and the more we talked about it the more it made sense to me. It really seemed to fit into the things I had always believed.

One day it just clicked that this was God answering my prayer for guidance. I didn’t tell anyone, not even my husband, about my revelation as I thought they would think I was crazy. A couple of days later my husband told me that he wanted to convert and he was ready to do it right then, he had absolutely no doubts. It was both a relief and a little scary at the same time. I felt almost like we couldn’t possibly have spent enough time researching before we came to this conclusion. The reality is that sometimes we just know in our hearts that something is right, no matter how long we spend gaining the knowledge to support the feeling.

The following day I decided to tell my husband that I had also been thinking about converting and also about my fears and concerns. He agreed to wait until I was ready before he converted so that we could do it together. That was about 5 weeks ago. Since then I have come to terms with our decision and am totally comfortable with it. We have told our family and our friends and have for the most part have been met with support and understanding.  Going through this has shown me how blessed I am to have such caring and loving friends and family in our lives.

Last night my husband and I prayed for the first time. I’ll admit we did it in English and we used flash cards to guide us through so it was a little rough, but not as hard as we thought it would be. Today, I prayed alone for the first time (once again in English and with the flash cards). It is a lot different than anything I have done before, but it felt right.

I know, without doubt, that I have made the right decision. I also know that I want to be a better person, not only for myself and my family but for God as well. There are many changes that I will have to make in order to be the person I need to be. I have taken the first and hardest step by finding God and I feel like with the support of my husband, family and friends, the rest will come much more easily.