Adventures with Heather

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Stay at home Mom

Sometimes I feel weird when I tell people I am a stay at home mom.

I know there are others that feel the same way as me... You know the stigma...

When I am having conversations with (some) people and they ask me what I "Do" and I tell them I am a stay at home mom to Trust, and they are kind of like "Oh..." and feel weird, searching desperately to change the subject. It feels uncomfortable sometimes, and I feel the need to tell the person "Oh, uh, I also do music and have this accomplishment and that accomplishment and BLAH, BLAH, BLAH..."

Why do I/we think being a mom isn't a worthy/good enough calling on its own? Why is DOING something in the world more important that BEING in our kids lives? I am not speaking for every mom out there, only from my own feelings (aka insecurities! ha!) just to be clear...

We feel embarrassed and think being a mom is not very important, but let me tell you it is THE MOST IMPORTANT calling you can have to be a parent! Not only are you a caregiver, making sure every need of your child's is met but we have the influence in our kids life to help them succeed/grow/help them dream/we support them/teach them healthy relationships/encourage them/love them no matter what etc or if you don't take this role to heart you can crush them/take away their dreams/discourage them/hurt them deeply/make them feel ignored/make them feel less than. Our identity in God is first learned from our parents, how we relate with others is learned from our parents, how we feel loved is learned from our parents... See? This is a very important role!

I absolutely LOVE being a mom to Trust Emmanuel Evans! He is worth more than any accomplishment I could ever do. He is my greatest accomplishment in fact!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Spontaneous Outburst of Words

I never know what I am going to write when I write a blog. Most of the time it is just a spontaneous outburst of words, but I kind of like that. 

Lately, I've been thinking a lot about Haiti. The Cholera outbreak has really put a crazy kink in an already BAD situation... I've been keeping up with updates of one of the Missionary Teams down there with our Church, Vineyard Columbus and every time I read the updates, I cry. I am moved to pray for them but also DO something for them. I am going to be planning some Benefit Shows for Haiti in the Early Spring, hoping to rally the good people of Columbus together to offer a hand of support to the people who are working tirelessly in Haiti. I know I can't go there personally, but it is cool to know I can empower someone to go in my stead. It's strange... even before all of the Earthquake stuff happened my heart has been heavy for Haiti. Almost like God was preparing me for what was going to happen and giving me a heart for the people of Haiti.


---
I had a dream the other night that I was in an old school Church building (with a steeple and 1 room that was the sanctuary) and outside there were 9 swirling, creepy, skinny tornadoes forming. I realized while in the dream that the 9 tornadoes signified 9 different difficulties or things that are swirling around in my life trying to destroy me. I stayed in the church with the feeling I was safe there and the tornadoes wouldn't come near it.  




The dream is pretty right on with things happening in my life. There are PLENTY of crazy situations that Satan is trying to throw at us to try to destroy us (and a couple almost got to us) but one thing I know for sure. There is Safety and rest in my God! He is stronger and victorious every time! I know that the ONLY thing getting me through this difficult season of life is my faith and trust in God. There have been times that I've tried to do things on my own or rely on my own strengths and I realize things fall apart pretty quickly when I do that. I mean it is a DAILY struggle. A daily choice to choose to trust God. But it is soooo good when you do it!

I've been listening to Rich Nathan's sermons about every other morning just to kind of get me off on the right track. Ever since I started that, my anxiety has decreased loads. Interesting isn't it? When I fix my eyes on Jesus all I see is Jesus all day, but when I fix my eyes on every hard thing swirling about me, every hard thing is all I see all day. 

Confrontation has been a weak point of mine all of my life. (I mean who really likes dealing with conflict?) But I am seeing God is really trying to grow this in me in this season. It's interesting to see the hand of God shaping me.. It isn't always comfortable, but I know it is good.

Monday, December 13, 2010

SO much to be GLAD about. A Pollyanna Reference

If you have never seen the movie Pollyanna I HIGHLY recommend it to you! It is a Disney Classic that I've loved since I was a kid, and just got it on DVD for Christmas.

The Movie is about an Orphan Pollyanna, who goes to live with her crabby Aunt Polly after her missionary parents die. Despite her situation, she is "Glad". Whenever a bad situation arises she plays the "Glad Game", trying to find something in the negative circumstance to be glad about. She slowly impacts the whole town with her positive attitude and it got me thinking... 

I have SO much to be Glad about, and yet sometimes I choose to look at the negative more than the positive. I really want to combat that negative thinking by adopting the "Glad Game" in my own life.

Here are a few things I am Glad about:


I AM GLAD WE HAD A FAMILY CHRISTMAS WITH MY PARENTS, SISTER, BRO-IN-LAW AND NIECE: We had SUCH a good time and stayed the weekend at my folks house to spend time with Amy, Jesse and Chloe. It was amazing getting to all be together this Christmas! 
I AM GLAD TRUST IS SITTING UP AT 5 MONTHS: He's getting really good at it!


I AM GLAD WE TOOK FAMILY PHOTOS FOR CHRISTMAS: We made Family Christmas Cards with these pics and just sent them all out in the mail. (This is a miracle since I am usually bad about this kind of stuff..)


I AM GLAD I PLAYED A BENEFIT HOUSE SHOW FOR HAITI: We raised over $2,400 that night! It was pretty magical.

I AM GLAD I AM RECORDING "BETH SAFE TONIGHT" WITH RICK MAY FOR THE LOVE146 COMPILATION CD: I am recording final vocals for the song on Wednesday and I am pretty stoked about it.

I AM GLAD I RECORDED CHRISTMAS SONGS WITH MY COUSINS MELODY AND MICHELLE: I have LITERALLY never laughed so hard in my life! I had the greatest time just hanging out with my cousin's and singing Christmas Tunes with them! They are AMAZING singers too!

I AM GLAD TO HAVE AN AMAZING HUSBAND WHO IS GETTING ORDAINED AS PASTOR IN JANUARY: He has worked SO hard these past couple years in the youth group and I am so proud of him for getting the honor of becoming Pastor!

I AM GLAD WE HAVE A BEAUTIFUL HOME TO LIVE IN: Brett's Dad let us live in his 4 bedroom house while he is living in Florida! Amazing blessing in a very financially straining time.

I AM GLAD TRUST WAS DEDICATED TO THE LORD: Our friends and family got to witness Trust's dedication at Church and it was such a beautiful day!

I AM GLAD TO HAVE A GOD WHO REALLY CARES: No matter the situation I am amazed at how Jesus has come through for us and helped us! 

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Ugh, Anxiety!


Ugh, Anxiety sucks! I honestly can't remember a time where I have felt so anxious. Unfortunately, I can't disclose why, but I just had to write something.

For those of you who haven't suffered from anxiety, this is what it feels like:

-A giant ogre decided a good place to sit is on your chest, making it hard for you to breathe.

-Your mind is racing so fast it feels like the 12 hours of sleep you got the night before were more like 2 hours.

-Household chores look more like mountains to climb.

-Your heart decides instead of beating like a normal heart, it wants to be in a rock band.

-Your headache is playing the bass in your heart's rock band.

-Prayers turn into desperate pleas for help.


Don't worry, I am working through this stuff! I met with my counselor yesterday about it.. It is in this case,  going to be a process. 

I know all the verses in the Bible that talk about Anxiety and "casting your cares on Him", but for me right now it is hard to read it and apply it. Especially when you are right IN the fire. Fire doesn't feel good, it burns.. But I am looking forward to the refinement and the growth just through the fire. It's time to grow up and deal with things head on, not avoiding issues and walking on eggshells to ensure my hearts safety, because in the end I am just lying to myself that the problem isn't really there. 

Christmas is my favorite time of year (usually), but this year I am not into it. Holiday stress has left me feeling empty. This is NOT what Christmas and the Holidays are supposed to be about! I feel the injustice rising up in me and I want to scream and shout in indignation,"I WANT MY CHRISTMAS BACK!!" It will be a process, but hopefully we can do it. All the little compromises we make just to "make everyone happy" even though no matter what we do someone isn't happy... We are stretched in so many directions left flabbergasted the day after any major holiday in a state of depression and a holiday hangover. Why do we put ourselves through this every year? This behavior is SUPER unhealthy, and we MUST find a middle ground somewhere. I'm not trying to sound mean or rude toward our family and friends, it is not their fault, it is ours. We have stretched ourselves too thin and we are tired. We are still new at all this... We will have many more try's to get it right thank the Lord.

 If you feel the same way during the holidays, give me an AMEN.


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Session 3- a precious moment

Session 3 with Teresa was amazing. I basically just shared with her my week of processing and cried a TON. 

One of the moments will forever stick out to me. Teresa stopped what we were talking about and said, "Heather, about 15 minutes ago I felt like God wanted me to tell you that He wanted to give you a picture of what Lily (my daughter we lost in a miscarriage) looks like NOW and I know he is going to give it to you. Let's pray." I got goose bumps INSTANTLY! I knew He was going to give it to me too.. Because for some reason before then, I could never picture her face. She was always just out of view in my head, and I LONGED to be able to see what she looked like.

As I closed my eyes to pray, I literally saw her face almost immediately. Blond flowing hair, bright blue piercing eyes, chubby cheeks and a big grin on her face. I cried aching tears. Teresa asked me what she looked like and through rolling tears I told her. She asked what she was doing and I told her, still sobbing, "I was behind her, and she was holding hands with Jesus walking. She turned around and locked eyes with me smiling and waving at me. She looked so happy..." I was amazed. What a precious moment! I will never forget it..

After talking with her about my feelings of not getting to burry her and feeling like it is less real because of that, I think I want to either get a bench at a park in honor of her or a small grave stone. Just a place I can visit and think.. Something to finalize everything.

My mom told me something that also made me cry. She said that after her Grandma died it was really hard for her, and she just wanted to talk to her. She realized that she couldn't talk to her personally, but if she prayed to Jesus, He could tell her Grandma whatever she told him. I thought that was cool and we both cried thinking about it..

I also shared with Teresa that the way I process through grief, hurt and heal is through song writing. I wrote 1 song 2 days after I miscarried. I shared the words with her and shared some other words from other songs I've written. She asked me if I had ever thought about making a CD about Grief and Healing, and I told her when I was going through everything I actually thought about it. She said that a lot of her clients would be interested in it, and that processing with music is really helpful to the soul. I told her that was definitely true in my situation and that I do eventually want to record all the songs I wrote in that time. It will have to be God's timing for sure, and I will continue to pray for provision as I start to make it! He always provides a way!

Healing is exhausting... The wound I covered is exposed again, but I am resting in the hope that Jesus, the GREAT healer, will tend to my wounds with great tenderness. He has been so sweet to me in this time. 

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Last weeks processing

So this past week was NUTS! I find when I am really busy like I was this past week, it gives me less time to think, then when everything calms down, I am left with a FLOOD of thoughts. There were some sweet moments though that kind of caught me by surprise.

Here's one.. I was at the International Justice Mission Gala and performed, and this really nice man and woman asked if I had a CD. We talked for a while about my music and they encouraged me LOADS. We split ways, then later the man came up to me again after reading the inside of my CD where I had written about Lily, our daughter we lost, and he said with the most sincere look on his face,  "I am so sorry to hear about your daughter, that must have been really difficult.." I just smiled and said "thank you so much... I really appreciate that. You know, it was a really hard time, but it really helped me appreciate all that I have now, and I know I will see her again and that gives me great hope as a mom."

That moment caught me by surprise. I felt the strange emotion of feeling proud that I have another child.. That I am a mother of TWO, not just one. God keeps re-affirming that for me in small ways and it is really healing. Because I often feel sad that I didn't get to burry my daughter.. Just because I had a miscarriage, does that make her any less real? No, not to me. She is as real to me as Trust. It is hard ya know? 

I remember right after I had miscarried I was at church on Mother's Day, a pretty rough day for me at the time, and Rich asked if all the Mother's in the audience would stand. I remember standing proudly and crying my eyes out. I'm sure the people around me were wondering why I was crying so hard, but I didn't care. I was a mom, and I was proud. :)

My cousin Melody wrote this really amazing song for her baby she lost that I often listen to to help me cope. The words are really powerful, and the last verse is the most moving for me, it goes like this:

"You are gone now, I've grieved 
It's time to move on
Though your spirit's still with me

Never could decide on a name, For you
none was good enough
for someone so beautiful and true

I tried so hard, 
to be the best for you
I'm sorry that it failed, 
I wish there was something I could do

I wonder what you would have looked like
or who you would of been
would you have had my eyes
my blue eyes

I cried so hard
I tried to make it through 
I'm sorry that it failed
I wish there was something I could do

I will see you one of these days
and I will hold you so tight 
like I cannot now
It gets so hard I get sad"

Monday, November 1, 2010

Healing is a Process


These past couple weeks have been a crazy mix of emotions and new things! This blog may be all over the place so stay with me! :)

I decided it was time to take charge taking care of myself for a change, and decided to go to counseling at the Vineyard to help me work through some of the HUGE emotions of these last couple years. As I was talking with Teresa Smith, the most genuine, sweet lady I know, I realized, DANG! I have been through A LOT these past couple of years! From infertility, to miscarriage, to a pregnancy filled with complications and trials, to a labor/deliver/recovery from hell... then having a very fussy baby on top of all of that, it has been really hard to deal with all of my emotions for obvious reasons.

 All that being said, I am finally seeing seeing the light in the darkness I have been stumbling through. And I can honestly say these past couple years have been the darkest times of my life. I feel stripped, vulnerable, beaten down and disconnected. The trauma of the miscarriage + being so close to death during pregnancy + trauma of a horrific delivery + almost dying from untreated heart failure and pre ecclampsia is a lot to deal with ya know? But as I meet with Teresa, I know there is hope! She prays with me before I leave, and I love it. I have never felt so vulnerable, but then so built up at the same time. It is so healing just to speak out everything that happened and how I am feeling. I know it is going to be a long road, but I am all in, ready to be transformed! I want to be so open in this time... open to Jesus and all that He has for me. 

Through all the darkness I am amazed in every horrific moment to find traces of light... I can't even tell you how many moments Jesus has showed up in all of this tragedy! I am so certain of the fact that He was there with me through it all. The verse that says something like "You intended to harm me, but God used it for good" really speaks true in my life. I KNOW Satan is trying everything to try to keep me from doing the things God called me to do. I have felt so strong at so many moments that the Enemy was attacking me, but I kept my faith. I haven't questioned ONCE God's character! I know He NEVER wanted any of these things to happen to me, but since we live in a broken  world, crap happens, and the Enemy is cunning. I know now that God can REDEEM all of these things and raise me up out of the pit. 

I am ever aware that healing is a process, and I may not feel better right away, but I am excited and ready to deal with these things head on! Here we go.....

Friday, October 1, 2010

ASK and you shall recieve

If you've been reading my blog you will know that lately I've been feeling a little down because I haven't had much to look forward to. Well this week a lot has changed! I am going to be a busy bee these next couple of weeks doing things I LOVE to do! Here are a few things going on right now...

Last night I played a show to fight Human Trafficking and it felt so GOOD! 

I've gotten TONS of e-mails this week asking me to play at different events. 

-2 Human Trafficking Benefits

-3 Worship opportunities at different churches around Ohio

-A chance to speak at FUSION High School Youth Group at Vineyard

-Invitation to a Bible Study on Wednesdays

I am VERY excited about the upcoming things in my life! God is really teaching me a LOT in this season of life. I am loving every minute with my son, and I get to keep doing music! Pretty fantastic. I think it is very important to keep doing the things you love or else you can get bitter about your life. So I will keep writing, keep recording, keep playing shows, keep doing what my passions are!


Saturday, September 25, 2010

Just another challenge

So yesterday and today have been a little rough. Nothing super hard has happened, just feel sad and a little lonely.

 Trust has been sick with a cold for the past two weeks and I took him back to the doctor on Thursday for his 3 month check up, and sure enough he has an ear infection. POOR BABY and poor mommy! I haven't slept much these past couple nights because little buddy hasn't been sleeping well. He's been waking up every 2 to 3 hours coughing or because he can't breathe. Now that I am typing all of that out, NO WONDER I am feeling so beat up! Lack of sleep my friends is not a friend of mine. 

Because of all of this the house is a MESS, I am in sweats and am not wearing makeup (which I like to wear a little because I look like one of those celebrities on the US WEEKLY magazines who get caught by the paparazzi without makeup on and you're like WOAH is that what she really looks like?), I haven't gone anywhere or seen anyone, I've been watching TV series like Fringe just to pass the time, etc. It's also been hard because Brett has been super busy with work too so I've only seen him 3 days this week for a couple hours at night. 

I think I've also sort of "blanked out" with my spiritual life these past couple days too. Does that ever happen to you? You just sort of get on survival mode ya know? I am taking this as just another challenge. That when all of this passes and I can get myself and Trust together we'll be better for it! He is sooooooo precious you guys! Even when he is sick he still smiles and coos it is wonderful!

GOTTA GO! T just woke up!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A wonderful evening with my husband

So yesterday was amazing!

Brett had the day off and we just sort of relaxed/hung around the whole day. I spent some time writing a song while Trust napped and I am absolutely in love with it. I literally can't get it out of my head. It is all about walking with Jesus. The reason why I love it so much is because everytime I sing it, it makes me want to cry because I think about being with Jesus and the craziness of my life seems to still for just a moment. It goes like this:

"Walking side by side,
underneath the apple trees,
in your orchard I find rest,
for my soul

Take me by your hand,
Lead me by your still waters,
Lead me on

Walking hand in hand,
gazing at the galaxies,
in your presence I feel that,
I am home"

Later that day my mom randomly called and asked if she could babysit Trust so we could go on a date. Of course I said, "ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! We would LOVE that!" So we talked all day about what we would do and where we would go. We knew we wanted to go to a park (it was BEAUTIFUL yesterday!) and grab some food but we weren't sure where and wanted to be spontaneous.

SO we headed out for our date and we decided to eat at our friends family resturaunt called the Pomegrante. If you have never been there, it is FANTASTIC. Our friends dad stopped by our table to say hi and gave us our dinner for FREE! SCORE. A good start to a great evening.

After dinner we decided to go to Innis Woods, our favorite park. We talked about all sorts of things. Deep life things, our hopes, fears, and concerns and also some fun things too. We haven't talked like that in a while, and it was really refreshing. I am SUCH a quality time/quality converstation person. If I don't have a deep meaningful conversation for a while I get cranky. We also talked about memories of things we used to do when we were dating and how we LOVED taking walks and going to parks when we were dating and that we should go to parks more often.

We walked the trails and explored, ate the herbs in the herb garden (don't tell) and talked/brainstormed together about this idea for a story I got from a dream I had. The premise is that hidden in our world are secret doors. The doors are usually ordinary things like old radios or an old bench you happen to sit on. The Doors lead to different parts of the world or secret worlds within this world. In every door is a Key Keeper. They are usually animals that were once humans and they carry the key to get back to the place you were just at. Some doors are faulty though, they can kill you if you aren't careful. The main characters are Me, Brett, The Helper who guides us on our journey, Trust and the Evil Keeper. Trust gets stolen by the Evil Keeper and me and Brett with the help of The Helper, have to rescue him! I seriously can't wait to start writing it! We came up with some really neat ideas. A lot of our inspiration came from things we saw at the park, so that was kind of neat.

After the park, we went home and watched the new show THE EVENT on NBC. I think I like it! I can't wait to see next weeks episode. I am all about conspiracy theories and stuff so it should be an interesting show!

Also, Tonight we are going to see The Legend of The Guardians for FREE thanks to our friend Marco! I've been wanting to see this movie so bad, so I am super excited! I LOVE OWLS!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Since the last blog...

Since the last blog I wrote about making time for inspiration, I tried it and it worked!! 

I wrote a cheesy love song. It goes like this:

"Walking these streets I see people passin'
Wonder if they've been askin'
Who they're supposed to be
Wandering like me

Then i see your face
and I stop breathing
You're locking eyes with me

I'm not dreaming,
I'm seeing,
Clear for the first time, clear for the first time
Everything's clear when I look
into your eyes
I can see the light
and everything's clear for the first time,
I can see clear for the very first time"

Like I said kinda cheesy, but hey! I like it! I have to be honest, I am a fan of a bit of cheese. I am a hopeless romantic at heart. I still long to be wooed even now that I am married! I think it is at the heart of every woman to be desired and loved and cherished. It's easy to forget about or neglect romance once you have a baby, so it is VERY important to do things that remind you of why you fell in love in the first place. Revisit old places you once loved, talk about things you used to do, BUT ALSO make NEW memories and romantic moments! Go on picnics, adventures, play, laugh, enjoy each other. Life is SO quick to steal away joy and love. You really have to work at staying IN love ya know? ANYWAYS! Rabbit trail!

I also had a moment of spontaneous inspiration when I was trying to put a very fussy baby bed last night. He wouldn't calm down, and I couldn't think of a song to sing (he LOVES singing!) so I made up my own little lullaby, and it worked! Just another song to add the my developing lullaby album. It goes like this:

"Momma's here, Momma's here
Don't you fear, Don't you fear x2

I'll keep you safe and warm my dear
'Cause Momma's here for you x2"

It looks repetitive and silly, but the melody it makes it a lot cooler I promise!!

I may not have gotten to the dishes or finished all of the laundry, but it made me feel good to do something fun. :)

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Making time for inspiration


So this motherhood stuff is pretty tricky! I am finding I have little time to do anything other than the necessary. 

By the time I take a shower and put myself together a bit, Trust is up from his morning nap. By the time I clean his bottles, do the laundry, take out the dirty diapers, make myself a meager lunch, Trust is up from his early afternoon nap. By the time I unload the dishwasher, make a bit of dinner Trust is up from his late afternoon/evening nap and Brett is home from work, then after a bit of time together, I am turned in for the night at 8.

Now I realize I am LUCKY. My kid loves his naps, meaning I am able to get a lot of important things accomplished and he is super happy and fun these days! The only problem is, I am having trouble making time for inspiration, for me. I am afraid that if I put off the dishes, laundry, etc.. chaos will ensue. I am not a clean freak by any means, but I don't like getting behind because then it piles up, and I get overwhelmed and I don't know where to start. 

I have so many creative things I keep pushing to the corners of my mind! I have this short story idea that I got from a dream I had, songs ideas, painting projects, and loads of pics I want to print and hang.. People I want to meet with, places I want to go like parks, festivals, concerts, coffee shops, parties.. 

Sometimes I think I stick to the mundane because I am scared. I mean it is safe isn't it to just stay at home, stick to the schedule. I know what will happen, things are predictable. But when I go out or try something new right now, I just never know what will happen! I realize it will be like that for a while cause Trust is still young. Maybe the unpredictable is a good thing. I keep looking at the unpredictable as a bad thing and I need to flip my thinking a bit! Be more "by the seat of my pants" kind of girl like I used to be pre-baby!

I don't want to lose myself just because I have a baby. I want to be a more enhanced version of myself because I have a baby. My son Trust is absolutely wonderful. He brings out the best in me for sure! I could literally just stare at him all day and watch all of his different expressions and be happy. I just have to remind myself to do things for me too and it is okay! 

In the coming weeks I want to try to be more spontaneous. Leave time for inspiration. Forget about the dishes, laundry and cleaning for 2 seconds and just let myself be creative, be me. 

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Life with Trust- a learning process

My son Trust is amazing. 

That could be all I write and it would sum this whole blog up! 

I literally look forward to seeing his chubby face every feeding, even though I am tired and exhausted, it is so worth it. I think the reason I appreciate him so much (fussy times and all) is because he and I were so close to not being here. I realize more than ever the GIFT he is.. That he is only mine because God gave him to me. I am learning SO much in this time! Allow me to ellaborate..

It hasn't been the easiest transition for me.. I mean I am human. Lack of sleep, sheer exhaustion, and fluctuating emotions constantly make me frustrated, sad feeling, overwhelmed etc.. I've apologized to Brett 3 times already this week for snapping at him. But I am realizing, it's ok. It is all part of this crazy journey I'm on of motherhood. It has actually been really good for me, humbling even. I mean before it was a little hard for me to say sorry or admit I was wrong, but now I am making more of an effort to say sorry if I've said something cutting. 

I'm even learning about self sacrifice in a whole new way. Before Trust I would wake up at my leisure, pressing the snooze button 3 or 4 times before hopping into the shower.. But now right when the alarm (my crying baby) goes off and I jump up out of bed to give him his bottle and change his diaper. There is no option of snooze! When a baby is hungry you HAVE to feed them, obviously. Showers and meals are scarce. Coffee is essential. Starting your day off with a positive attitude and with Jesus by your side is the MOST important thing, or you won't make it. 

Now that I am a stay at home mom, I look up to my mom and other moms staying home with their kids.. It is SO hard,  but so worth it. 

Yesterday was so full of surprises and "God Moments"..

I went to the church for Pastor's Prayer with Brett and got some AWESOME prayer. Craig & Linda Hesselton, Andy Saperstein, and Kelli Messik prayed for me. Craig got a word for me that was really applicable to how I've been feeling. He said that my emotions were like crushed ice and that I had been crushed by everything that happened to me through Pregnancy on and that God wanted to equalize my emotions again and give me back joy. It was like a weight was lifted when he prayed that! It had been a while since I'd felt happy/joyful like before pregnancy and I can honestly say yesterday I felt really happy/joyful and full of God. I could feel Him speaking to me about things again.

Linda got a picture of my life being like a garden. My life was Raked up (pregnancy, labor, delivery, recovery), seeds were planted in that time, and God is going to produce fruit from everything. I've always felt that! From the beginning I knew Trust's story would help others and that God was going to work everything together for good! All day yesterday and today I've been trying to compile my thoughts on how to speak about my situation to people to give them hope. I am even speaking at the High School in the coming months and it is perfect timing! I know God is going to give me more opportunities like this.

Kelli prayed that I would be given songs of love for God and of hope for others. I KNOW this will come to be because my heart is always filled with songs. :)

I've also been thinking ALOT of the phrase from Chronicles of Narnia "Aslan is on the Move". Aslan is the Great Lion, King of Narnia who is supposed to be representative of Jesus. I just keep thinking in all of that crazy situations in my life and other people's life right now that God is on the Move. He is working. He is turning the ugly, cold winter into beautiful, warm spring! He makes all things new. He makes all of the horrible circumstances I went through something good and beautiful.

One last thing about yesterday. Brett went to a guys night at Larry Miller's house last night and he came home after I had already went to sleep. When I woke up for Trust's 2am feeding, there was a beautiful box and a card on top of it in the bathroom. I read the card, and almost burst with amazement. It said this: 

"Heather, This is totally random, but you were on my mind tonight & I wanted to give you a care package (for the new mommy).

I feel like God wants you to know He totally sees you right now
 
Rosalyn"

WOW. I read that note and thanked God. He is pursuing my heart like crazy right now and I am just floored at all He is doing. 

Monday, August 9, 2010

Story of Trust-Labor/Deliver and Recovery

Story of Trust- Labor/Delivery and Recovery

It all started Tuesday, June 22nd at 2am. I was 42 weeks pregnant on the dot, and I woke up feeling crampy like I had diarrea and was sick to my stomach. I went downstairs to get some water and a granola bar and went to the bathroom, and found myself wide-awake. I watched some Phil Wickham music videos on my phone and Brett came in around 2:30 and told me to turn it down, and I told him I wasn’t feeling well and that I would turn it down. He went back to sleep and not long after, I felt a POP and knew something was up. I slowly got up and ran to the bathroom, and I felt a trickle that was uncontrollable, then I passed my mucus plug, and I got excited knowing that my water had broken! FINALLY Trust was almost here!

I called my sister (she was sleeping in the other room) and told her to come in the bathroom because my water had broken and I couldn’t move. She ran in and we smiled and laughed and I was really chill and just excited and she started running around like crazy and woke Brett up and they started getting everything together for the hospital. I sat there giddy with excitement and called the on call doctor and asked if I should go to the hospital right away, he said yes, but that I didn’t have to rush or anything and that I could take a shower if I wanted to. So I leisurely took a shower and got all ready to go to the hospital!

It was stormy and muggy when we left the house. Brett put down towels and trash bags for me to sit on in the car, and I told him it felt like I was peeing my pants uncontrollably! We listened to Paramore to get siked up in the car, and when we got to the hospital, Brett got a wheel chair for me and we headed in! We were out of our minds happy and excited at the thought of meeting our precious boy.

We got to the 2nd floor and there was a girl in front of us whose water had also broken in front of us, and the receptionist said it had been a busy night! We got into the Triage room and the nurse checked me out to make sure my water had truly broken, and sure enough it had. Brett was busy texting family members and I sat there dreaming about meeting Trust for the first time! I was so excited!

We got to the natural delivery room and it was HUGE! Amy and Mom were finally allowed in the room and they each sat in a rocking chair. I told the nurse I was going all- natural, no drugs or anything.  

I talked to Brett, Amy and mom and said, “Please support me in trying to do this without medicine! Let’s also stay positive no matter what! It's gonna get crazy soon..”

They put an IV in just in case I needed meds later and it literally took 30 minutes to find a vein. I was poked probably 4 or 5 times before she got one and when she did, my arm started swelling like CRAZY. It hurt REALLY bad but I tried to buck it up because the nurse said it would be fine in a second. Minutes passed and it still hurt and was swelling worse so I told another nurse and she finally put it in another vein.

I started getting mild contractions and my cervix was at 3cm and the nurse told me it helps to walk the halls to bring on stronger contractions. So I walked up and down the halls at least 50 laps and it worked! I walked through the strengthening contractions and I went back to my room after the contractions started getting pretty painful. Unfortunately, when they checked my cervix, it was still only at 3cm! I was feeling tired and wore out, but was still keeping a positive attitude.

At a certain point I just stayed put because the pain was getting so bad. I mean, I have NEVER experienced something so painful EVER in my life! I prayed and asked God to help me get through and listened to Phil Whickham to help relax me. My mom coached me through the breathing and helped me stay focused. I cried through a couple contractions, and knew this was going to be rough. I was also feeling VERY dizzy and faint every time I had a contraction.

12 hours later, I was only at 4 cm and felt like I was going to pass out even more. My nurse Jen told me since things weren’t progressing they were going to have to start me on pitocin to speed things up or risk infection. I was starting to spike a fever so they were concerned and started giving me antibiotics. My blood pressure was rising as well. My body was starting to get weak and I was so shaky.

Jenn told me that if I wanted an epidural, I’d need to put in a request NOW because the anesthesiologist may not be available when I really needed him. I told her I wasn’t sure, that my plan was to do it naturally. Jen told me “Honey, you think it is bad now, it is going to get at least 3 times worse. I’m not trying to pressure you, I just want to give you the facts.” Then all of a sudden a contraction hit me like a ton of bricks, and I said, “Sweet Jesus, get me the epidural!!”  (Thank Jesus I got it too. You will find out why later in the story why. I SERIOUSLY think God inspired me to get the epidural, because it wasn’t even on my radar.)

The anesthesiologist came in and gave me the epidural. It was not bad at all! The worse part was having to stay still. I had strong contractions through the procedure and felt like I was going to pass out again. At that moment I was glad I made the decision to get the epidural.

They started the pitocin and my contractions started getting closer together, only now I could only feel the pressure of them not the pain. I was feeling MUCH better needless to say!

I start to notice that Trust’s heart rate seemed to dip really low when I would have a contraction, and my new nurse Amy kept coming in and rearranging my position to see if it helped his heart rate. She had a feeling that when I was having contractions, it was pressing on his umbilical cord. She came in frantically one time and put an oxygen mask on me and I started to freak out a little. I knew something wasn’t right… She also put in an internal monitor to monitor my contractions better and a monitor on Trust’s head to get a better reading on his heart rate, something that terrified me. I never wanted that, but knew things were getting serious.

Amy, my nurse, was trying to get a hold of Dr. Russ the on call Doctor that was going to deliver Trust, but he was in a C-section. I could tell she was getting nervous, but was trying to stay calm for me.

I quickly progressed to 8cm and Dr. Russ came in and said “We are going to deliver this baby soon. Let’s start pushing. Are you ready to push?” Seeing how his heart rate kept dropping and flat lined 2 times, he explained to me if we don’t get him out now that usually the 3rd time it drops it doesn’t come back. I pushed and nothing seemed to be happening except I start feeling very sick and dizzy. There was so much hustle and bustle in the room I could hardly concentrate. People were whispering and getting things ready. I felt so many emotions… Was Trust okay? Why is this taking so long?

I looked over at my sister, mom and Brett and they looked terrified. My sister was shaking and Brett was praying. My mom just kept coaching me as I pushed counting 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10…

Dr. Russ explains to me that my tailbone is curved in a way that was preventing Trust from being able to come out on his own, and his heart rate kept dropping and that he was going to have to use forecepts to pull him out. He continued to tell me that there was a possibility that he could break my tailbone and that if that happens it would be months of recovery. He told me that he would have done a C-section, but there wasn’t time and that he needed to get him out NOW. He also later told me that I would probably have to give birth via C-section next time because of my tailbone.

After hearing all of that, I said “Oh no…” and took off my oxygen mask and started throwing up terribly and choking and convulsing. I felt like I couldn’t breathe and the room was spinning. Dr. Russ told me to calm down and told everyone in the room to be quiet. The nurse Jen was back in the room and said “Honey, FOCUS, PUSH!!!!” I said, “I can’t do this!” Dr. Russ said sternly, “Look at me. You need to block out everyone in the room and just push. We have to get this baby out.” My mom counted while crying while I pushed. Brett was right by my head holding my hard and praying, “Please Jesus, help Heather, help Trust.”

I used all of my effort and energy to push, and the resident doctor was assisting Dr. Russ and using the forcepts to pull him out and she couldn’t get him out, and Jen again screamed, “PULL Honey, PULL!!” Dr. Russ takes over and by the 3rd push he snips me several times and pulls as hard as he could and out comes Trust black and blue with the umbilical cord wrapped around his neck twice! The resident doctor sort of panics and goes for some scissors to cut the cord and Dr. Russ calmly says, “No” and gently unwraps the chord from Trust’s neck. Then I heard a wondrous sound! “WAAAAHHHH!!” they put him up on my belly and Brett cut his umbilical chord and I cried tears of joy! They quickly took him from me and I kept my eyes fixed on him while they cleaned him up and checked him out.

I laid there on the table convulsing terribly while they stitched me up. I heard them talking, and I tore in 3 or 4 places and it took them 1 hour and 15 minutes to stitch me up. I lost A LOT of blood. It looked like a murder scene and it felt like I could hardly breathe or speak. I felt so vulnerable, so exposed, just laying there in silence. I couldn’t fathom what had just happened to me.

I wasn’t sure if I should cry tears of joy or tears of grief because this wasn’t the labor and delivery I had planned/hoped for. I decided to stay positive and just focus on Trust. He was SO beautiful and BIG at 8lbs 10oz and 21 inches long! I thanked God we were both okay.

I was taken to another room shortly after delivery. The epidural slowly wore off and the pain from delivery was extreme. I was given some super pain pills but they hardly touched the pain I was in. Every trip to the restroom was miserable… I also felt VERY dizzy and faint and short of breath. There was one time I got up and my hearing went completely out and the room began to spin and I fell into the nurse who was helping me to the restroom and blacked out for a second. They told me in the hospital that I had lost a significant amount of blood and that my hemagloben levels were at 7 when the normal level is supposed to be 14, and that I may need a blood transfusion. They put me on iron to see if that would fix itself.

We had some wonderful moments with Trust in that time. I loved him from the first moment I laid eyes on him and that time in the hospital with him was great for bonding. I’m so glad I had the moments to breastfeed him. He latched on immediately and did fantastic! Every nurse was amazed and thought that Trust was my second child, but I just told them he was the pro, not me! It was also really neat to share the story of Trust’s name with the nurses and people who came in the room for different things. He is an amazing boy, with an amazing story. God predestined him to be here in THIS exact time in history for a purpose, and he is already helping people!

I wish the story ended there, but it doesn’t.

The hospital discharged me the next day with NO discharge instructions or medications.  I was in SO much pain I called my doctor to write me a prescription. There was NO way I could have made it without something for the TERRIBLE pain I was in. I was frustrated because I felt like there was a definite lack of communication between Dr. Russ and my doctor and the hospital.

I got home from the hospital ready to start my new life with my new family, but after a day I started noticing I was not feeling so great… Every trip to the bathroom someone had to go with me and I was GASPING for air, I felt like I was going to pass out, I was seeing double and seeing lights in my vision. We decided to call the doctor and he told me to go to the ER right away.

We took Trust with us to the ER because I was still breastfeeding, and my mom, sister and Brett all came with me. I was totally FREAKED that Trust had to be there with us. My 2 day old baby should NOT have had to go with me to that horrible place!

In the ER they checked my hemagloben levels and decided that I would need a blood transfusion and needed to be admitted. I BAWLED my eyes out knowing that Trust couldn’t stay with me. I also was completely a mess wondering how I’d get the milk to him. Luckily, my family came through and made milk runs to hospital to get the milk I had been pumping for him. Unfortunately, we had to switch him to formula in that time because of the meds I was on. It was SUCH a hard decision. Again, this was not my plan.  I still had to pump and dump my milk, and it was pretty miserable for how weak I was. My aunt and uncle also came to my house and took care of him while I couldn’t be there! What a blessing! They told me later that they fell in love with him and that it actually blessed them more than it did me.

It was a LONG, grueling night in the hospital. I was still pumping to give the milk to Trust and was getting absolutely NO sleep and was so sick I felt like if I were to close my eyes I would not wake up. It was so scary. They sent me home later that next day, and I was still feeling pretty miserable, but they said my levels went up to 9, so I could go home. I trusted they knew what they were talking about so I didn’t argue with them.

I got home and the next day I started feeling really bad again. Faintness, shortness of breath, double vision, very swollen, headache… I took a nap and my mom without my knowing called the doctor again. The doctor told her to have me go back to the hospital.

I woke up from my nap and my mom explained to me that we had to go back to the hospital. I cried. It was like a nightmare I couldn’t wake up from. All of my expectations of what this time would be like were totally blown to shreds.  I had to leave my baby again. I was so upset.

We got to the hospital and we got a Doctor from heaven. Dr. Blue. He came in and asked me TONS of questions (unlike the other doctor that just blamed everything on pregnancy) and really got down to the bottom of things. I had a CAT scan, Chest Xray, Heart EKG, Heart Ultrasound, Blood tests, and blood pressure tests. He even looked at my tongue and could tell my ph balance was off because of the color of my tongue!

When I got the Chest Xray I looked at the picture and thought to myself the left side looks really strange compared to the right side. I told Brett and my mom what I saw and they said, “Oh, you don't really know what you are looking at… it’s probably fine” I still had a funny feeling, knowing something wasn’t right.

Before we had heard from the doctor, the nurse came in and asked us, “Have you heard from the doctor yet? The EKG and Chest Xray were showing there is some water around your heart causing congestive heart failure and lung failure and we need to give you this medicine called lasiks to drain the water in your body.” My eyes were wide with disbelief and so were everyone else’s. I knew something wasn’t right, and like I was close to death, but I didn’t know I was THAT close. They also took me to get a CAT scan to check and see if I had a blood clot in my brain or lung, but PRAISE JESUS it came back normal. That could have been really bad, and we were all pretty scared.

Lasiks by the way, is not very fun when you are healing from SEVERE tares in that “area” if you know what I mean. You basically pee every 2 seconds uncontrollably, so they put a little bedside potty by the bed so I didn’t have to go so far. It was miserable. The doctor explained that from all of the fluids they pumped into me during delivery and during the transfusion and the transfusion plus the swelling I had during pregnancy, that it caused the swelling around my heart.

They also discovered from my high blood pressure test that I had some pretty high blood pressure (which I’d had the whole time, but had been ignored mostly.) and also from my blood test they found out I had pre ecclamsia. Because of the pre ecclamsia they had to put me on Magnesium to prevent me from having a seizure or stroke.

They admitted me again to continue the lasiks and to treat the pre ecclampsia with magnesium and regulate my blood pressure with meds.

Magnesium is basically MISERY in a bag. It dulls your nervous system so you have to stay in bed and can’t move. It made me have the WORST headache of my life and made my scalp tingly and I felt like I had a really high fever. I wouldn’t wish that night on my worst enemy… To add onto my misery, they told me I had to get a catheter. My mom was staying with me and I told her “I can’t do it mom! Please, I’ll be a beast and get up and go to the bathroom! I just can’t get a catheter with all the pain I am in!” I cried out of fear and anxiety. The severe tearing I had and stitches plus a catheter would equal even more misery for the night. Needless to say, I didn’t sleep a wink. They also had me on blood pressure meds to bring my blood pressure down, which did help thankfully! Through all of this, I was still pumping and dumping my breast milk too. Pumping every 2 to 3 hours during all of my pain and misery was the worst thing I could do for my mental and emotional state, but I was stubborn. I was hopeful to be able to breastfeed once all of the crazy medication had gotten out of my system. It took the life right out of me, making my already weak body weaker. I could hardly hold my arms up and needed help pumping all through the night. On top of that, I was severely engorged and it was so painful to pump.

The next day I was still miserable from the Magnesium from the night before. My mom went home to rest (she didn’t sleep either) and my dad came and stayed with me. I tried to rest, but still couldn’t sleep because of the after affects of the Magnesium. They monitored my blood pressure all-day and tried to help manage my pain with meds. They also discovered I had a bladder infection, and started giving me antibiotics.

Brett came to stay with me that night and I was finally able to sort of rest in between pumping. The next day the nurse talked to me about being released later, but that my doctor, Dr. Parker, wanted to see me first before I left to make sure I was well enough to go home this time since they sent me home prematurely 2 times before.

While I waited for the doctor, my sister Amy and Karen, my sisters Aunt in law, came in and prayed for me. Amy’s sister in law Melody was having HER baby that day and was one of Melody’s support people! So they had a moment, and decided to visit and pray with me. I cried so hard. It was refreshing to have people pray for me and remind me that God was with me through it all.

After they left, I noticed I was feeling rather feverish… I told the nurse and sure enough I had a fever of 100.4 and rising. I started to cry and feel frustrated, and the nurse was kind of flustered by my reaction. She asked me why I was crying and I told her I just wanted to go home and be with my baby, and that I was tired of being sick. She told me, “Well sometimes women get a fever because of hormones and you have too many blankets on you…” She continued to pull the top two blankets off of me. I was UPSET. Yeah, like blankets give you a fever.. I was starting to get tired of getting treated like I was making my symptoms up.

The Nurse called Dr. Parker, and told him how I was feeling. He got caught in a surgery and couldn’t come to see me after all, so he talked to me on the phone. Rather brashly he said, “Do you want to go home?” I hesitated, and in the back of my mind I was thinking ‘of course I do but am I WELL enough?’ I just said, “Um, yeah I do, but am I ok?” He said he would have the resident doctor come look at me to see if I was well enough to go home and we got off the phone. I felt even more emotional. Was I going to be sent home again and have to come back?

The resident doctor told me that I looked well enough to go home and me and Brett argued with her. We told her we had been sent home twice and had to come back and that on the discharge instructions it says to come back if you have a fever of 100.4 + and my fever was rising to 100.8. They said if it got to 102 to come back to the ER, something I thought was absolutely ridiculous. Why wouldn’t they just help me now? We quit arguing at a certain point, and just decided it wasn’t worth the fight since they weren’t going to do anything. They gave me a prescription for antibiotics and made an appointment to see Dr. Parker, and that was it.

As we packed up our stuff to go home I cried tears of frustration and anger. I felt terrible, yet they weren’t listening to me.

That night I spiked a fever of 102+. I was SO miserable and I cried again. The LAST thing I wanted to do was go back to the hospital where they would ignore me, so I just stayed home and took ibprofen and the antibiotics.  The next day my mom told me to call the doctor, but I was so angry with him that I didn’t. I knew what he would say. “Go back to the ER.” When he was the one who sent me home KNOWING I had a fever. I was sick of the run around, and decided just to pray and keep taking the meds.

My mom prayed for me and said God told her that she needed to pray for me to get better, and shortly after she prayed for me, my fever started to steadily decrease! It was a miracle!

My recovery was still rocky from there. I was still in a LOT of pain and had an infection in my lymph nodes, HORRIBLE Migraines, and random fevers.

The thing that kept me going through it all was my healthy, growing boy! My dad and Brett (hehe) took Trust to his first pediatrician appointment, and she gave him a clean bill of health! Absolutely nothing wrong with him. Praise Jesus!

Trust continues to grow everyday and it amazes me. He is a miracle. God truly has been with us through it all and I learning to trust him everyday. It has been a battle, but I know God is working everything out for good! I see that everyday. And through it all God has been SO faithful and provided EVERYTHING we need. Food, money, support, love and so much more through others! THANK YOU EVERYONE!!!!

The song I wrote for him when I was pregnant carries even more weight as I reflect on what we’ve been through. I will end with the lyrics because it says it perfectly!

“The Doctor’s said that you may not live, but I believed something different for you, Trusting that we’d make it out of this somehow, knowing you were not a mistake

As you grow, I know, God is with us, God is with us, Trials may come and go, but I know, Trust will carry us through, Trust will carry us through

Now you’re two years old, a miracle living and breathing, your life has become more like a living testimony

As you grow, I know, God is with us, God is with us, Trials may come and go, but I know, Trust will carry us through, Trust will carry us through

You’re beautiful my love, a miracle from birth…”

 

 

 

 

 

Story of Trust- The Beginning

A Story of Trust- The Beginning

My husband Brett and I found out we were pregnant in early 2008. We were as happy as could be being pregnant with our first child, dreaming and making plans for the future. I changed all of my bad eating habits, stopped drinking coffee, and pretty much did everything I could to ensure a healthy pregnancy.

We had our first ultrasound and everything looked great so we started telling friends and got a few baby things like a really cool crib set that was gender neutral. My mom even got us some cute little baby outfits and bibs. Everything felt certain…Life was wonderful and new.

One Thursday night I had a terrible dream. I dreamed I was in a dingy bathroom and Brett came in and I told him I was miscarrying, and to call the doctor right away. He called the doctor, but she was out of town. A huge angry rat came out of nowhere and started attacking us. I woke up from the dream and prayed and told Brett about it.

It was Friday, and that day at work I noticed some spotting (bleeding), remembering my dream from the night before, I called the doctor right away. She got me in for an ultrasound that day. She said that she wasn’t seeing any progression from the last ultrasound and didn’t see a heartbeat, but that it didn’t mean I was miscarrying either. She also told us she was GOING OUT OF TOWN and that we wouldn’t be able to get a hold of her, but if I felt any pain or increased bleeding to go straight to the hospital. I felt like the dream from the night before was a warning or preparation for us to know what to do and what to expect, but also that we were entering an ugly battle.

In the next day the pain started, and the bleeding worsened. I woke Brett up at 2am Easter Sunday morning in extreme pain and he sat with me massaging my legs and praying for me. I was crying the pain was so bad, so we called the on call doctor and she told us to go to the ER.
We spent Easter Sunday in the ER. They gave me pain meds, which helped a lot and the doctor did a pelvic exam to see if I was miscarrying. Sure enough my cervix was open and they were very certain I was in fact miscarrying. I cried. I was devastated. What did I do wrong? How could I have tried harder to ensure my baby’s safety? Was there nothing they could do other than send me home with pain meds and let the baby pass? It seemed so insensitive, so wrong, so unfair.

We went to my parent’s house that night and decided to stay there for a couple days since I needed lots of help. I cried in my parent’s arms and they cried too.

We decided to name our baby Lily for the Easter lily. We both thought our baby was a girl from dreams we had about her, so we stuck with it to give our hearts some closure. It was hard to be losing our baby on Easter Sunday. A day that is supposed to be filled with much hope and promise was filled with sadness and emptiness for us. We knew every Easter from that moment on wouldn’t be the same, yet God STILL showed us His love and hope in those moments. Knowing that we don’t belong in this broken place, but we were meant for more. That Jesus rose to life as Lily would also be raised.

I bled and was in gut wrenching pain for 2 weeks. I was weak and I was emotionally traumatized. I was living the death of my child everyday. I continued to bleed, knowing there was nothing I could do to stop it. I felt so out of control.

I remember lying helplessly on the couch praying and feeling the closeness of Jesus. That as I wept, I knew He was right there with me weeping too.

People from our church, friends and family brought us food, cards, flowers, left us messages on facebook, emailed us and prayed with us. I cried each time I received something, feeling so blessed in such a dark time. They were a great extension of God’s love for us. I was so grateful for them.

Somewhere in that time we received the crib set we ordered months before, and Brett told me, “I’m so sorry honey. I will put this away until we need it.” He was so sweet and put it away in a closet so I wouldn’t find it.

Finally, the doctor told me since the bleeding wasn’t stopping, she would need to do a procedure to “scrape” out the rest, a D&E.

I went into surgery in good spirits. I prayed a lot with Brett and my family before and had peace about everything. After the surgery, the doctor told my parents and Brett that the sac and lifeless baby was still stuck in my uterus, and it was a good thing they did the procedure when they did because of possible infection.

I cried again when I heard this, because I KNEW my baby was really gone. I felt empty and sad, like a piece of me was missing.

A couple weeks before Mother’s Day, my family and I planted a lily in honor of Lily. It was emotional to say the least. As my dad dug the hole I was thinking, it is sad I didn’t get to burry my child somewhere, but it was okay because I know she didn’t need a place to be buried, because she was in heaven with Jesus. Just in time for Mother’s Day the lily bloomed! Another LOVELY display of God’s love for us! Even in the little things like a lily blooming. He knew what it meant to me and it was a beautiful moment.

It was probably 8 months before I felt somewhat normal again. I was overwhelmed with grief, depression, and feelings of guilt and shame. People were still asking me everyday “how’s the pregnancy going?” or “how’s your baby?” not realizing I had miscarried and I had to tell them all over again about the miscarriage. In a way it was a good healing process to be able to talk about it, yet still, it brought up all of the horrific memories.

I had some great encounters with the Lord in that time. Sometimes when we are at our lowest He speaks the loudest.

I remember one occasion I was at my church sitting alone and I felt this overwhelming feeling of loneliness during worship. I made a conscience effort to worship God anyway and pushed my feelings aside. I closed my eyes to focus my mind on Him. When I opened my eyes I had this overwhelming feeling that I was singled out by God. That even though I was in a room worshiping with 3,000 people He SAW me. It was so personal and profound. I cried and peace washed over my heart and I told Him everything I was feeling about losing Lily and that I missed her. I later got prayer and I felt like a stitch was placed on my bleeding heart. That healing had begun.

In those months women who had also lost a child, came out of the woodwork and talked to me. I had no idea how many women had been through what I had. I thought I was alone, but to my surprise, many women have been through it, yet are just unable or scared to talk about it. I had many great talks with those women and we cried together, shared together and shared the hope of meeting our children in heaven. What a great hope!

God continued to pursue me and urged me to keep talking about Lily and to continue to heal. He wanted to pull out everything

I had put under the rug and deal with it even though I wanted to hide all that I was dealing with. He is good like that. He doesn’t want us to stay hurt or broken. He wants us to heal so we can help others.

In the months following I was able to talk at different women’s events about my miscarriage, and how God got me through it. I cried each time, the wound still fresh, but God continued to use Lily’s story to bring people to Him.

God gave me a sweet analogy in that time that Jesus has scars in his hands and feet as a reminder of LOVE of what He did for us, and I also carry scars of the Love of my daughter. They will never go away, but it is okay. We all have scars, but it’s what we do with them that matters.

Women came to me, wrote me letters, and shared about the children they had lost and that they had never had the courage to talk about them until I told my story. I am constantly reminded that God really does work EVERYTHING together for good, and uses every person’s story to bring Him glory!

Fast-forward a year and a half.

Brett and I decided we wanted to try again for a baby. A year had past with no luck. I started to think maybe the procedure I had might keep us from getting pregnant, but we prayed and others prayed for us too keeping faith. Every time I took a pregnancy test I felt the sting of defeat and failure. It was not easy but I kept praying and trusting God that HIS timing was perfect.

On October 10th, 2009 the day before Brett’s birthday, I had a strange craving for pizza and went to the store for a pizza and a pregnancy test. I took the test not thinking anything would happen, and to my surprise I saw a little pink plus sign in the window! I called Brett feeling scared, yet excited and told him the news. He was hesitant to get excited and he said, “Are you sure?” I sent him a picture text of the test, and he finally believed me! We told our family and asked them to pray. I ended up telling all of my friends too just because I felt that no matter what happened, I wanted to celebrate the life I had for as long as I had it. I was trusting God for the health of this baby.

With little time to celebrate, I immediately started feeling sick. Thinking it was just normal morning sickness, I tried to continue life as normal, but soon I was immobilized by intense nausea and vomiting. We switched doctors in that time, and I called him up because of the trouble I was having.

By the time I got into the doctor my symptoms were MUCH worse. I couldn’t move without throwing up and drinking and eating were near to impossible. He told me that my blood tests from my last appointment showed that my progesterone levels were low (Low progesterone can cause miscarriages) and that he wanted to put me on progesterone supplements. I was overwhelmed by the diagnosis, having flashbacks from the previous pregnancy, but I also felt grateful to be able to stay on top of the problem. Again, I was faced with my worst fear, but I KNEW I had to deal with it head on. I knew this wasn’t going to be easy…

Also, my doctor wanted me to go straight to the hospital for some IV treatments and meds since I was pretty dehydrated and miserable.

I got the treatments from the hospital and went home that night and ate a good meal, but ended up throwing up EVERYTHING I had eaten. Feeling defeated, the next day I called the doctor again saying nothing had changed. They told me the next step was to put me on Home Care. My nurse told me it was VERY important that I do the Home Care because of my health and the baby’s. We were nervous because of the cost, but KNEW I wouldn’t make it without it.
The Home Care nurse came and hooked me up to a Medicine IV pump to help with the nausea and vomiting, and later I went to stay at my parent’s house because I couldn’t take care of myself.

I was in shock. I thought pregnancy was supposed to be fun and easy! I wanted to pick out cute little outfits and talk about names, but there was no time for that. Flashbacks of hospital visits with Lily were in the back of my mind constantly, but I kept praying under my breath, hoping for a different outcome.

The medicine they had me on through IV gave me some really crazy side effects that made EVERYTHING worse. My heart was racing, I had heart flutters, shortness of breath, insomnia, restlessness, and it felt like I was lying on pins and needles. I was getting no sleep and could hardly stay in one position for a minute without pain or vomiting.

One of those nights I was so sick I thought I was going to die. I kept throwing up, and my Ketone levels were in the high 80’s, which means your body is very dehydrated and eating off of your fat supplies (starving), and I was having trouble breathing. Every sound, smell, movement, and light made me sick. I lost 3 pounds that night. Not only was I thinking of myself dying, but I was also thinking about losing my baby and it was terrible. All I could do that night was sing worship songs in my head and cry out to God for help.

Thank the Lord for my parents. They had a baby monitor in my room and anytime I needed help they got up to help me. I couldn’t have done it without them. I’m not sure if I would be here today if they were not there with me!

The nurse switched my medicine the next day to Zofran, (a medicine they give to Chemo patients for nausea and vomiting) and I was finally able to sleep through the night.
Everyday was a horrible battle with food. The nausea and vomiting were so bad that if I had something in my mouth it made me sick. I cried as my mom and dad and sister lovingly confronted me with trying to eat more. I was trying, but it felt impossible. I had lost 12 pounds (being underweight to begin with) so I knew I had to try.

In that time we had MANY doctors visits to check in on my progress, and at 10 weeks we went to hear my baby’s heartbeat. I was nervous. What if all of the medicine, lack of food and water affected the baby? I was trying hard to trust everything would be okay.

I was quiet in the car. My mom and Brett were with me as support and they knew I was feeling nervous. We got to the doctor’s office and my doctor put the little heart monitor on my belly and I heard nothing but static. He searched for what seemed like forever, and still nothing. I began to sweat and tears welled up in my eyes, thinking “Not again, please God don’t let me lose this baby too. It’s just too much.” The doctor said he wanted to do an ultrasound to check and make sure everything was okay, so we waited for the ultrasound room to open up.

As we waited my mom said, “Heather it is going to be alright.” I had a blank stare just wanting to find out if everything was okay, trying not to think too much.

We got into the ultrasound room and the doctor put the wand on my belly, searched around for a little bit, and sure enough! There was our little baby swimming and dancing around in my belly! The doctor said, “Looks like the baby is just fine! Sometimes when they are really active it is hard to get a heartbeat.”

I cried tears of joy all the way home with my mom. Words could not express the relief and happiness I felt. My baby was okay. Surviving the odds, I KNEW in my heart this child had a great purpose…Even if that meant just teaching me how to trust God.

The coming weeks were full of many late nights of sickness, misery, and insomnia. But the picture of my baby swimming around despite all I was going through kept me going. Seeing the ultrasound made it REAL for me. Knowing that I wasn’t sick for no reason, but because I was having a baby!

Things started getting easier around 17 weeks (4 ½ months). I started being able to eat a little bit more normally, and threw up only once or twice a day. Not only that but my belly was starting get bigger and I was feeling lots of movement! Just amazing.

The appointment I was excited for finally came! The 20 week Ultrasound appointment to find out if we were having a boy or girl and to check all the fingers and toes and organs.

I was excited and nervous to see my babe again. Praying that everything would be okay… Right when the ultrasound technician put the wand on my belly she said, “Oh, it looks like you have a low lying placenta.” Not knowing what it meant I said, “What?” She told me it usually shifts up as the baby grows but if not it could be trouble for delivery and certain activities could cause it to erupt. She told me that the doctor would want to follow up with me on it, and to not do much activity until then. I felt like crying. Another medical issue? Really? I wasn’t expecting that at all. I felt a cloud of anxiety set in for a second.

THEN. The most lovely thing happened! I saw my baby! The head, the heart, the hands, the kidneys, the legs, and the moving little body. It was precious! Then came the time when we were to find out if it was a boy or a girl, and after a bit of prodding, we found out our baby is a BOY! Filled with joy and tears I was speechless. Ever single hardship I went through up until this point was forgotten!

I ran out to the waiting room to tell my dad who was waiting anxiously and gave him a high-five and a hug and said, “It’s a boy!” His face was priceless. He had only had girls, and now he has a grandson!

We celebrated at First Watch for breakfast, and we texted and called all of our friends and family to tell them the news.

I got to work editing the video footage we collected and made a cool video to document the ultrasound appointment of our little son. I used the song “You’re Beautiful” by Phil Wickham since that song has really helped me process through a lot with the miscarriage and with finding out we are pregnant again. The ending of the video is the Bridge that says, “When we arrive at eternity’s shore, WHERE DEATH IS JUST A MEMORY, and tears are no more, we’ll enter in as the wedding bells ring, your bride will come together and we’ll sing, You’re Beautiful.” A beautiful example of God’s redemption and hope for us. He makes all things new. He gives hope to the hopeless.

Brett and I decided to name our son, Trust Emmanuel Evans. Trust, because this whole journey of pregnancy and Trust’s life has been COMPLETELY about learning to trust God FULLY with our lives no matter the outcome. And Emmanuel means “God with us” or “God is with us”. We believe in this time God has never been far off but right there with us through it all. He is what has kept us steady, and hopeful.

We know that even after Trust is born, the story isn’t over. We will have to continually trust his life over to the Lord, and his name stands as a GREAT reminder to us to always trust God. His life is a living testimony of God’s mercy and grace in our lives. Giving us the gift of a child. No matter the circumstance, He works EVERTHING out for the good, even if we don’t see it yet.

The story continues...



Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Heather, where have you been??

So I've been sort of out of the internet realm for a couple of weeks! Many factors have led to this. We just moved to our new place (it is amazing) but we don't have internet and aren't planning on getting it. Also, I've been in Nashville Tennessee for the past 2 weeks with my sister, brother in law and niece!

Nashville has been great! Getting to spend time with my sister and niece before Trust gets here, means a LOT to me. Although the reason I came down was kind of sad, she was feeling overwhelmed and needed her sister, it has been really good for both of us! :)

I have really gotten some GREAT practice being a mom with dear little Chloe. I have helped with every aspect of her schedule successfully, watched her on my own, played with her, taught her words and I really feel like I can do this mom thing! I realize the beginning months are ALWAYS going to be hard, but I am really looking forward to the 6-12 month age! It is a blast! She is changing so much and growing rapidly!

I do miss Brett my hubby like crazy though.. I can't wait to see him! He hasn't seen my belly in a while and will be impressed with how big Trust is! :)

Not only that but my belly is growing rapidly! My body is always changing and my stomach is a bottomless pit for food! It is so funny.. My sister makes fun of me because my mind is always on food and the next meal. lol..

Before all of this I was working on a lullaby project, and I am really excited to get back to it when I go back to Columbus! I have a lot of inspiration now from spending time with Chloe!

Lot's have been happening, but that is the jist! My next doc appointment is the 16th, the day after I get back. yeahh!! I'm hoping for a good report for my little babe. :)

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Songs for Trust-Lullaby Album

So I had this idea to write a Lullaby Album for my baby Trust (he is still incubating in my belly at 5 months pregnant!) to get ready and excited for him to get here. Plus, a lot of my friends have or are having babies that I would love to give this CD to. I wrote 2 songs for the Album on February 6th, and they just keep coming! I asked if AJ, one of my friends would help me record the album, and he agreed, so hopefully by the time Trust gets here it will be done! We'll be recording our first songs next Friday, and I must say, I am excited!

**Every time I sing, Trust moves like crazy! I think he likes music.. :)

It is neat to think of Trust growing up, having interests, having a calling, a purpose for his life, and the fact that I get to be apart of his life is just amazing! He has already made such an impact in my life and he isn't even here yet! We have been through a lot these past couple months, but I know all of the hard stuff has only made my love for him stronger, and I appreciate his life a lot more than I think I would if all of this came easy. He has taught me to TRUST GOD and know that God IS with us through it all.. His name is perfect. Trust Emmanuel Evans. (Emmanuel means God is with us) A constant reminder of God's provision for us and to Trust that everything will be okay.

I wrote this song last night called "Trust", Here are the lyrics!:

The Doctor's said that you may not live
But I believed something different for you
Trusting that we'd make it out of this somehow
Knowing you were not a mistake

And as you grow, I know
God is with us, God is with us
Trials come and go, but I know
Trust will carry us through
Trust will carry us through

Now you're 2 years old
A miracle living and breathing
Your life has become like
A living testimony

And as you grow, I know
God is with us, God is with us
Trials come and go, but I know
Trust will carry us through
Trust will carry us through

You are beautiful, my love
A miracle from birth

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Our Little Boy.. :)

                                                Trust Emmanuel Evans, our Baby Boy!!
We had our Ultrasound appointment today, and we found out we are having a BOY!! Horaay! I swore it was a girl, but was pleasantly surprised when I found out it was a boy! I sort of had a feeling because of how squirmy this little guy is. Just like his daddy!

We decided to name our little boy Trust Emmanuel Evans. This whole pregnancy has been all about trusting God, so we thought it was fitting! Emmanuel means "God with us" which He has been through this whole process. We will continue to trust God through the rest of this pregnancy, labor, delivery, childhood and adulthood. :)

I was a little nervous because right when the ultrasound technician put the wand on my belly she said my placenta was low and that we'd have to follow up with the doctor on it. I don't really know what it means but she told me a few activities to be careful on. Trusting God yet again! See? This name fits!

The rest of the ultrasound was great! We saw the heart, kidneys, fingers, legs all folded up and cute, arms, the cute little profile and it was great! Very reassuring and precious! I held back tears of joy the whole time!

I made a little video of our ultrasound experience so check it out in my videos on Facebook once I upload it!! The song in the background is called "Beautiful" by Phil Whickham, and it really helped me through a lot of emotions from the miscarriage, and through the trials of this pregnancy. I hope you like it!




Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Crazy yet amazing Weekend..!

This weekend was crazy to say the least! It is kind of weird that it is over.. all the planning, all the e-mails and phone calls.. I miss it, yet it is a relief at the same time!

It all started Friday with the Travonna Haiti Benefit. I was THRILLED at the turn out, and couldn't believe how much we raised for Haiti! $1,100!! Horaay!

Then on Saturday I hurried and packed up the last of our things in our apartment and recovered from the Benefit show the night before. I also ended up going over to Brianne Gladieux's house to do crafts and drink tea! It was lovely and relaxing..

Sunday was the day of the BIG move, but I woke up that day to some terrible news.. they found my old friend Heather Faehnle.. she had committed suicide.. I cried for a while and called my mom and cried some more. It was such a shock. She had so much going for her.. I just couldn't imagine how sad and alone she must have felt in that moment. Plus her family is so sweet. I can't imagine how they are taking the news.. Her wake is Wednesday and her funeral is Thursday. It will be a hard day, so I think I am only going on Wednesday because Thursday we go to the doctor to find out if we are having a boy or girl and I think it would be too much.

Unfortunately, the rest of the day Sunday I was kind of in a fog. BUT THANK THE LORD for amazing helpers! We had some mom's from the Net and Rock Youth groups come and help clean out Brett's Dad's house where we were moving in and, Brianne, Alissa Theo, Andrea my sis in law, and my mom and Brett's mom came too! They cleaned like crazy! It looked and smelled so great once they finished!

Probably 10-12 guys moved all of our stuff in! They moved everything SOO fast! What a blessing to have so many people in our lives that love us! I cannot even fathom it..

We put things away the rest of the night and woke up Monday morning (my mom spent the night to help us) went to First Watch for Breakfast and kept putting things away. Everything is almost all put away, and it looks really great. My dad brought us Chipotle for lunch and we had fun chatting a little bit. 

We also saw a bunch of Wild Turkey in the back yard with a TON of cool birds and 8 deer! We saw 6 cardinals, 3 blue jays, finches and other birds live in our huge backyard. soo cool.. It sounds funny, but it feels like a retreat or vacation to have so much space and such a pretty view, plus a wood burning fireplace! This is a nice season..

Monday night was the Haiti Benefit at Vonn Jazz Loungue! It was a Success! We raised over $800 for Haiti, and if you combine the total from the Travonna Benefit we raised at least $2000 for Haiti this weekend! WOW! It all came together, and the music was WONDERFUL and people really enjoyed themselves. I definitely want to go back to Vonn. It is such a cool venue..

I have a hard/cool week ahead. I am praying for strength as I go to the funeral and the ability to enjoy the ultrasound with Brett. 

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Haiti Benefit in Columbus last night!

Last night the Travonna Coffee House "Grounds for Humanity" Haiti Benefit was buzzing with music, love, coffee talk, art, and giving. At one point, I looked around the room and felt like I was going to cry because of the AMAZING turn out and support of the Columbus community. 

The Music line-up was more than superb! I can't even tell you how refreshing and awesome the music was. You could just tell there was a lot of heart put into everyone's performance.. IT WAS SO GOOD!

There was also a VERY successful art auction that evening! Local Artists in Columbus donated there art to sell to raise money for Haiti. We raised Over $300 for the art auction alone! I got a pretty fantastic piece that I can't wait to hang up in my living room. It will be my constant reminder to pray for Haiti, and keep seeking ways to reach out to them. 

Throughout the evening there was probably 200 people that came.. or more.. I'm not sure! $1,100 was raised for Haiti, a number I didn't even think was possible! But yet again, the people of Columbus banned together to do something spectacular and blew my expectations. :)

THANK YOU to everyone who came, Played music, donated art and more! You are loved and appreciated!

Heather Evans

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Broken Art

Something happens when you write everything down. All of your anxieties, worries, cares.. You begin to process, you begin to think, you begin to heal. To write it, and leave it. To let it go as you close the page. 

My worries as of late are fragments of thoughts about the past and future. Things I can't do anything about, yet I still stew. I miss out on what is happening today, thinking about what is to come or could have done. 
------
Picture a mirror, shattered on the ground. When you hover over it you see a hundred reflections of yourself, from many different angles. It's like your past... Broken up in so many pieces, from so many different circumstances, from so many perspectives.. Feeling scattered, you give to worry. Fragments in your mind of past events, past losses, past choices. How will this fragmented display ever be whole and used for a purpose? 

Bending over the array of shards, you begin to pick up the pieces. You prick your finger on a couple sharp memories and move on. It hurts, but doesn't draw blood this time. 

You start placing the mosaic of shapes on a blank, boring canvas, and start to realize something interesting.. As the pieces are strategically placed, your broken life starts looking a little more like art instead of trashed goods. You start to see something beautiful, almost captivating about all of the pieces coming together to make a mosaic of life's hardships. It speaks something.

People pass by and see this work of art and are changed by it, knowing that deep in their heart they can be like this mosaic too. It's just a matter of picking up the pieces, and using them for something beautiful.

Friday, January 22, 2010

18 week baby appointment!

I had my 18 week appointment today, and it was GREAT! 

I've gained 11 pounds in 4 weeks! Usually, I wouldn't share my weight gain, but it is a COMPLETE blessing/miracle that I've been able to put on weight! It has seemed like such a struggle to keep any food down, and now I am eating pretty normally, with only an occasional bought of throwing up/nausea! 

My doctor was very proud of me for the weight gain (since I'd lost 12 pounds previously) and said "Well! Looks like you are feeling better these days!" I said "Yes I am!!" He also said "Good to see you are unplugged too!" to which I said, "Praise the Lord!" I still feel funny without my medicine pump, it was a constant accessory for the last 4 months, but I am SOO happy to be without it! I still take some nausea medication every once and awhile but it is a definite improvement!

Whenever he used the heart monitor to check our babe's heartbeat, it was kind of funny... You would hear the heart for a few seconds then hear a gurgle and Doctor Parker said, "Do you hear that noise? That is your baby moving!" I thought it was neat and I chuckled a bit. He asked me if the baby had been moving at all and I said "YES! A LOT!" It was all good stuff.

We also talked about my friend Karen Wilson, he just delivered her baby yesterday, and we talked about the Vineyard and how we probably have a lot of mutual relationships. It's great to have a friendly and caring doctor!

I also got my blood drawn, and scheduled my Ultra Sound appointment after that for February 4th! I am excited out of my mind for that appointment! We will finally find out if we are having a Boy or a Girl, and get to have a DIGITAL 3D ultrasound! Pretty neat huh? I can't wait to put a name to this lovely child! That will be THE BEST!

Me and Brett made bets in the waiting room and I said if it is a girl, you have to take me to Cheese Cake Factory for dinner! and Brett said, well if it's a boy, you have to make me dinner for a month! We shook on it before I had time to think about it, and realized I got the bad end of the deal.. Oh well! Either way I will be thrilled! :)

I am falling so much in love with this baby! I water up just thinking about seeing him/her and getting to be his/her parent! What an honor.. thank you Jesus for allowing me to do this! I am so unworthy, but still you give me this marvelous gift of parenthood!

Monday, January 18, 2010

18 weeks Pregnant & Benefit Shows!


I am now 18 weeks pregnant (almost 5 months!)! How time flies... SO crazy!

In pregnancy news, I am off my IV medicine pump! HORAAY! It was a little rough getting off of it, and I was feeling PRETTY sick for a couple days, but today I am feeling MUCH better as far as nausea and vomiting go today. I can honestly say this pregnancy thing has been the hardest thing I've ever had to do, but I know it will be worth it when I see that little babe's face!


In other baby news, we are going to the doctor on Thursday for our 18 week appointment! Then the appointment after that we will know if we are having a girl or a boy! I must say, I am excited! :) We are in transition of moving the 31st. SO many changes, but soo good!


In music news, The Priceless Music Video Release to the internet was awesome!! I got so much response and lots of people are going to use it to raise awareness about Human Trafficking. Pretty awesome stuff.


I've also been planning benefit shows for Haiti like crazy! From the moment I saw it on the news I felt moved to DO something! Knowing I couldn't go there myself, I decided to organize the music and art community in Columbus and raise some money through benefit shows! The response was so amazing that we are doing 3 benefit shows! 1 is January 29th at The Travonna Coffee House in the short north at 7pm. The second one is February 1st at VONN Jazz/Blues in Worthington at 7pm. The 3rd is still being worked out, but it is going to be a DANCE/HIP/HOP show! So awesome. I love Columbus, Ohio! :)