Showing posts with label motherhood. Show all posts
Showing posts with label motherhood. Show all posts

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Our Boys in Heaven

**This post does NOT include graphic pictures. To view this post with pictures go here.  Pictures include blood and baby fetus at 12 weeks.  Viewer discretion advised. No copying.

Sam is driving me to the hospital.  We run a red light.  I’m not wearing a seat belt.  It doesn’t matter how fast he is going, it’s not fast enough.  For the past 15min our mini van is giving us an audible warning: 
 “Please Fasten Passenger Seatbelt” followed by 6 annoying beeps.  
I look like a cat trapped in a glass box.  I squirm in my seat clawing to brace myself  for some relief but with each move I’m stabbed with more pain.  Breathing helps but I can’t catch my breath.  
My body feels like a piece of paper thrown into a flame.  It’s  shriveling into a ball.  Everything from the outside feels like it’s caving in.  Pressure, tightness, pain. 
  Just as we get to the Hospital Entrance my body packs a final punch.  I feel a pop in my gut and then the pain is gone.  All I feel is liquid.

Sam pulls into the ER and puts the car in park.  I feel fine.  No pain.  He jumps out to get a wheelchair.  I don’t move.  If I'm still enough I don’t feel the fluid I’m sitting in.  For that moment I try to believe nothing has happened.  I’m fine.  I can go back home now and continue to be pregnant.  I don’t hurt anymore.
A wheelchair is at my door and I still hesitate.  I don’t want to move.  I don’t want to face what just happened.

Inside the ER I’m asked what the problem is.  I play dumb and say “I’m 12.5 weeks pregnant and I’m all wet”
In my mind I’m trying to think of a scenario where the end result was still pregnancy.  
I’m given some scrubs to change into and wheeled into a bathroom to change while Sam checks me in. 

When I stand up I’m relieved to see the liquid isn’t blood. Another flush of fluid volunteered itself and  then came the blood.  Out of instinct I reached down to catch the mass coming outside of me.  Before I could process what was happening, cupped in my hands I'm holding 2 12.5 week old babies and their placenta.  Perfect little bodies.  
Exactly the same.

“Sam Hobi!” I yell through the bathroom walls.  “Someone get Sam Hobi!”  
WIth him at my side we discover our identical babies are (most likely) boys. 

In this moment is when I finally allow myself to daydream of our nursing nights, first steps, baby laughs, sport teams, school days, family vacations and birthdays we won’t have. For the first time these babies felt mine. It felt as real as it was over. I ached for my other children to have them too.  Instant love poured out of me. 

From the get go nothing about this pregnancy has been normal.   We weren’t “planning” on getting pregnant.  I had a 10 year IUD and was only 4.5 years into it.   A positive pregnancy test had me checking off the signs of grief rather than celebration.
I felt denial.  In fact, I didn’t tell my husband till noon the next day!
I felt angry.  I was NOT ready for this.  I did not want to be pregnant.  My youngest was starting kindergarten the next day!  Sam has been on board for having another baby for a few years now. I haven’t. 
I even felt depressed, albeit, for a day or two.  I have 4 kids.  I know what pregnancy/motherhood requires of me and I didn’t think I had it in me. I didn’t want to fail. 

I had such a hard time accepting I was pregnant. With my other pregnancies it was an instant celebration.  All of them were planned and all of them were easy to come by, thankfully.  We joke that I can get pregnant just by my husband being in the same room.  
Confidence didn't accompany this pregnancy but neither did fear.  I decided the only thing I could do about the situation was I trust it would go the way God intended it.
I didn’t want to tell the kids right away because it didn’t feel “real” yet.  I don’t know why?

The objective at my first Dr. visit was to get the IUD removed.  This posed a problem right away because the string couldn’t be found. With the help of an ultrasounds the IUD was spotted...right on top of the pregnancy. pregnancy. My uterus was tilted at an angle so we couldn’t get a visual on it without the ultrasound. I was only  6 weeks along so not much could be seen of the pregnancy.  It looked like a dark hole.   Was I really pregnant? Could this be a Ectopic pregnancy?   Ectopic pregnancies are common with an IUD so I’m ordered to have blood work drawn every 12 hours for 3 days to ensure my blood count is in fact increasing like it should if I really am pregnant. 
Pulling the IUD is 30% risk of miscarriage.  Should we remove it?  Should we not?  In order to remove it would require a scope surgery. The IUD and the pregnancy are hand in hand hiding in the corner of my round body.

I go home confused.  

After 72 hours I get a call from my OBGYN with good news.  My blood count is high.  In fact it jumped really high.  This is not a tubal pregnancy. Another ultrasound is scheduled at 8 weeks to check for a heartbeat. 

 I was told to arrive at 10:45 with a full bladder.  At 12pm I tell the front desk lady that  I’m going to PEE my pants.  Hurry things up already. (In my nice pregnancy voice)
Soon thereafter, I’m exposing my belly to a nurse who begins asking me the typical pregnancy questions. 
Is this your 1st pregnancy? no.  It’s my 5th
What are the ages of my kids? 14,12,10,& 5

As she rubs my belly with her magic wand she points out the unmistakable shinny IUD implanted to the pregnancy.  We laugh at the odds and she continues to explore.  In a calm but very curious tone she asks:
“So...did you know...there are...two babies here?”
She asks me to take in a deep breath and hold.  When it’s safe to release she confirms there are 2 babies!
 She has to stop the ultrasound because I’m laughing so hard she can’t keep contact with my belly.
“How does one get pregnant with TWINS while having an IUD?!” I half yell and cry.
“You weren’t aware you were expecting twins? she asks me wondering if I was teasing her.
“No!” I'm here for a heartbeat!“
I had been waiting for this ultrasound to make sense of any of it.  
So, now I know.  Yes, I am pregnant. x2

To Tell or not to Tell

 I realized I needed a new game plan when my hunger kicked in and I became the very hungry caterpillar eating my way through our house and I couldn’t get through a day without a nap.  My 12 year old daughter made the observation I “looked” pregnant  and they’d continue to catch me in a dead sleep on the couch after school again and again.

At  8 weeks and my 5th pregnancy I had already gained 10 pounds.  My body was giving away my secret -ready or not.  After hearing healthy heartbeats and a positive check up we told the kids we were expecting.  
I didn’t get jazzed about telling them, which is unlike me.  I can turn anything boring into "something".  It felt forced.  Not fun or creative. We told them individually with the video camera so I could catch each reaction.  The trick was doing it in the same day but fast enough that one wouldn't spill the beans to another.  We told the boys then on my way to my daughters room I found she had already went to bed! I'd have to catch her first thing in the morning before anyone talked to her.  I went to bed feeling agitated and unfulfilled.  Why?  
We didn’t tell them they were twins.  We decided to share that news as a family.

A few days later over Sunday dinner I asked them if they wanted to see pictures of the baby.  I handed out 2 pictures.  As they were looking at the “blobs” I told them one page was baby A and the other page is baby B.
The response was priceless.  Wait?  What?  We’re having TWINS?

That night I posted the news on facebook.  

I went to bed feeling better.  Maybe accepting the news and sharing it is what I needed.

As the weeks rolled on it was fun to have people congratulate us.  I was surprised at the interest we got from our 14 year olds  friends. When you have 4 kids the word spreads fast.(Facebook speeds things up a bit too)  
Immediately our kids were wanting to make room arrangements so a baby could sleep in their room. Guesses were placed on gender and the waiting game was already torture!  

Identical Twins is hitting the Jack Pot!  Buy one get one free! Who doesn't like a good deal?  Even at that, I went to bed each night grateful my body was assisting God in this miracle.  BUT they didn't feel MINE.

Monday(12 weeks and 4 days) morning came and went.  By 1pm I snuggled up to the couch like I do everyday for a little nap.  I woke up with a slight stomach ache.  I grabbed a banana and peanut butter and went to our backyard to sit in the sun.   I remember thinking it felt like a Garden of Eden Day.  Not too hot, not too cool.  Perfect. 
Then I distinctly remember thanking God for that very moment I was having.  The sky was clear blue, the sun at perfect temperature and I was sitting in my place on Earth in complete peace & safety.  That moment was noticed because I know so many suffer.  So many Christians in the East are fleeing for their lives with nothing to sustain them.  It breaks my heart to think of women and children living in fear.  None of that exists in my world.  I felt blessed and sad at the same time. 

After about 15 min.(3pm) I moved back to the couch.  The snack wasn't helping.  I didn't feel right.  I got off the couch at 5pm to drive my boys to football practice.  The pain was tightening pressure in my stomach.  Maybe my uterus is expanding?  When I got home I asked Sam if he would give me a Blessing if I wasn't feeling better when he returned from coaching football. (Which would be 7pm) 
He asked me if I wanted it now, before he left, rather than waiting, but I wanted to see if eating again would help.  Once he shut the door and drove away I questioned my decision.
30min. later I had him on the phone asking him to drive me to the ER.

He was home before I made it downstairs.  I fell to my knees hunched over a couch footstool in deliberate breathing exercises trying to endure the pain while he gave me a Blessing of Healing.  I heard him bless me that my body will be fine and I did feel peace.  I knew I was going to be fine.  He didn't say anything about the babies. That wasn't lost on me. We had to leave now.

We didn’t let the babies out of our hands  All I wanted to do was look at them.  For being so young their bodies are so developed.  I examined every little finger and toe.  It was all so amazing to me.  I felt proud to be a mother again.  I won’t have them in this life and that’s ok.  We will have them in Heaven.

The scripture in D&C 29:25 comforts me.
And not one hair neither mote, shall be lost, for it is the workmanship of mine hand.

These little boys are the workmanship of me, Sam & the Lord.  They are Eternal.
This knowledge brings peace but my heart still hurts.  I don’t understand why all this took place.  Such a strange turn of events to have end like this.  You can’t get “Identical Twin Boys“ back by just getting pregnant again. It hurts to miss out on that.

A room was prepared for us in the ER so i could be examined.  The IUD didn’t come out with the placenta. After 3 unpleasant pelvic exams an ultrasound was used to help remove it.   
5 hours later I walked out of the hospital with a clean bill of health.  My body totally capable of carrying more babies as soon as my cycle restarts.
No solid explanation for the turn of events.  The babies measured exactly as they ought at their stage and the placenta was healthy.
Just like that.  Game Over.

Returning home was the hard part.  Church friends were called to watch over the family while we were gone but were told not to share the news.  
My house was clean, my kids were fed and the lights were out when we came in.  How peaceful my home felt in that moment and I dreaded what had to happen next.  After warm hugs and goodbyes my friends left and the younger two who had been "pretending" to sleep darted from their rooms to my side.  
Do you know the gender?!!? My 10 year old begged with huge hopeful eyes and a wide smile literally jumping up and down. He is expecting a gender announcement.  I dodge his question by asking him to sit on the couch while we gather the rest of the family.  He makes a running leap onto the couch and bounces like he is on a pogo stick.  "This is worse than Christmas Eve Mom!  You're going to tell us what they are aren't you? Pure delight plastered on his face.

The following 5 days I sit in my bed day and night. I’m an Introvert.  I thrive on ”quiet time“.  I process my feelings through writing. So, I sit and write to find my peace.
I sleep for the good part of 2 days. With each passing day my body heals but my heart continues to break.  Each morning when I wake up it’s like ripping off the band aid again.  
Friends & Family drop off dinner, clean my house and text me throughout the day. It helps.  A lot.  
I have many friends  who have experienced a miscarriage and I’m willing to bet there are several I’m unaware of.  I think of you and draw strength.  I remember your child and your story.  Thank you for sharing.   I’ve never known this sadness but I trust you do.  

This week was a hard week.  I'm a better person because of it.  God knew what I can handle and he knew I would need some help to give up these babies.  I like the way it happened.  He was coaxing me along from the beginning.  I look forward to more insights as time heals and reveals.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Punishments/kindness Mothers Day 2013

"My mom is best at punishment/kindness"

Mothers Day isn't a mothers day without sun and the scent of lilacs.  Today is defiantly Mothers Day!  It’s sunny, warm, and reeks of fresh blossomed flowers.  A perfect day!
Around 9am I woke to the noise of kids scurrying around in their rooms.

While passing Jennica’s room I saw her retrieving something from a hiding place, then found Jace downstairs penning a letter to me. (his second Mother’s Day gift to me)

After the cheers of “Happy Mothers Day!”I was questioned with “What would you like for Breakfast?”

I wasn’t in the mood for breakfast.  Sam and I went out to the Red Iguana last night for dinner and I ate enough to hold me over for a few days.  While walking out of the restaurant I jokingly said, “”too bad tomorrow isn’t fast Sunday.  It would be a breeze.“

Before scripture study everyone pulled out their homemade gifts.  Jennica painted flowers on a matted board with some notes.

Jace did what he has done in past years.  He brought his school made mothers day gift home on Friday.  It wasn’t even 5min inside the house when he announced he had my gift and wanted to give it to me.  I tried to talk him out of it but he insisted.  It was a rock painted white with lady bugs.  I LOVE it.  I’m going to use it as a paper weight.  

Since he gifted it Friday he decided to write me a letter today.  It was funny.  He expressed he was going to miss me when I die- Just like he is going to miss grandma great and grandma Trena.  Then he drew a graveyard.  

Jarom brought home a bag of bath salts that smell so good and has already suggested a few times I take a bath.

Sam purchased a tanning pass to a local salon. 

 My white skin needs major color. 

I doubt having a pool in the backyard is even enough to tan my skin.  It has been YEARS since I’ve carried a tan.  For some reason it’s not as easy as it was in high school.

I wore a bracelet jennica made for me a few years ago for mothers day and she was moved that I still had it and that I wanted to wear it.  It’s made out of buttons.  So cute!

Sam made pasta dinner (yum!) Right now I've locked myself in my room to blog.  This is one of my favorite things to do but don't get around to it often enough.

I love Mothers Day.  I can’t remember one that wasn’t bright and sunny or went without homemade love notes from my kids
I remember being little and bringing home letters and gifts for my mom.  Mothers Day is also a special day for kids.  Expressing love and offering a gift to their mother is the best part of the day.  What child doesn't want to please their mother?  I still want to please my mother with kind words and freshly picked flowers (weeds)
Mothers are the best when they are also a best friend.  
My mom is mine.
I think I'm half way there in having Jennica being my best friend. Kindness follows pretty quickly from punishing. 

Sunday, January 27, 2013

"Sunday Bubble"

We all made it!  I sighed as I plopped into my seat.
Surly something was overlooked. 
Each child was properly dressed, I examined, except one wearing “play shoes” in lieu of the one  “missing” church shoe!

Church starts at 9am.  That's a good 2 hours later than our weekday wake up call for school.  On those days one child at a time is sent out the door armed with completed homework, packed lunches and full tummies.

On this day, it doesn’t matter what time church starts...I am always rushed.  This morning Sam woke me saying “It’s 8 o’clock.”  in a flat line tone.  Perhaps dreading the same course of events lay ahead as I did.

We have 4 sleeping kids and 1 hour to be seated at church. (with a 15min drive to the church building)
I don’t jump out of bed.  Instead, I slowly make my way to the bathroom dreading the race I’m about to embark in.

This happened last week.
 The exact scenario.  
I bribed all the kids with “Double Dessert” if they were ready for church before me.

It worked.

Today I took another stab at it.

65 minuets later I slipped into the back of the chapel, counting my ducks while Sam parked the car.  

I’m missing one!

He shows up (with Sam) shooting me his angry eyes.
“Why do you always leave me?”  He asks still hurt from the time he had to call home after I left him at church for an hour in December. * 

I replay our entrance into the building and remember seeing him run down the hall for the drinking fountain.

He’s right.  I did walk away without him. (...again)

Once we are all seated I take a few minutes to regroup and realize where I am.  
For the next hour I get to s-i-t.  
I get to sit and do
n-o-t-h-i-n-g but enjoy the spirit filled meeting.

That is until Abi climbs on my lap and announces she’s hungry.  I scramble for my church bag being careful that her little feet don’t snag my nylons, like they do every week (which are NOT childproof or cheap!!)
I try to return to the meeting when a little one says he needs to blow his nose, then a different child asks for a drawing book.  Next I’m explaining how a quiet game is played, removing Abi’s feet from the chair in front of us which is causing a toddler to scream, and I’m bending over like an ostrich searching for lost items under the chairs.  

Another child whispers to me with puppy dog eyes, he’s hungry.  That’s when I realize none of us ate breakfast.
I sneak half a bagel from Abi’s stash and hand it over.
I notice I’m not the only one handing out zip-locks filled with cheerios and other grab-and-go snacks. This eases my guilt.. a little.

The toddler in front of us see’s the exchange and eyes my bag. She helps herself to the abandoned cheerio bag which sends Abi after it shaking her head screaming“No!”

I turn to the right side of our row.  There sits Sam.

He is comfortably sitting, scriptures open, and eyes on the speaker.  I call this the “Sunday Bubble”  

I try to pass Abi to him but she prefers my lap.

My experience at church is so different from Sam’s and we sit less than 6 inches apart.  This isn't because Sam is unwilling to help, rather the kids just choose me.(except when it comes to gum.  Dad always has gum.)
 The Sunday Bubble favors him.

Have you ever watched what really goes on with other families during that hour meeting?

Mothers carry in huge bags full of treats, coloring books, and toys with one hand and an infant attached to a car seat in another- while balancing a diaper bag over her shoulder marching a litter of kids into a pew.  It's like entering a war zone.

These kids carry the power to pop the “Sunday Bubble” and apparently Mom’s “Sunday Bubble” is easier to pop than dad’s.

I like to watch what happens to a family when a mother goes out into the hall with a child.
Some fathers sit completely oblivious to the family war going on next to him or he watches with no clue how to manage it in the middle of a crowd.
The best is when the smaller one see their mother exit and they bolt after her as if she is abandoning them-even if it means crawling over their dad to follow her.

I remember a phase when I spent more time in the halls with a baby than I did in a class.  All the fuss to get there didn't seem worth it at times.  It would have been much more pleasant for me to stay at home so the kids wouldn't miss a nap.
  One Sunday a "grandma" approached me with a smile and said, "doing the hallway babysitting again?"  I half hearted joked, "I don't know why I even come."
She came back with, "The reason you keep coming back is because your creating a tradition for your family.  It starts now, while they are small."
I loved that nugget of wisdom and have returned to it for strength many times.

 I’ve managed to survive sacrament for 12 consecutive  years without a “Sunday Bubble” 
I’ve come to church armed with some pretty cool powers though.
When my kids were young I pulled out my octopus arms and worked magic to protect Sam’s “Sunday Bubble” from popping.

Now that they are older I have new trick that protects the "Sunday Bubble" of those around us .
 I have the “Mom Stare!” 
I can hold up 1 finger and they get the message to change their behavior.
If I hold up 2 they know they’re walking a fine line for trouble.
If I hold up 3 they know they’ve “struck out” and they will go without dessert.  

I don’t wear a  “Sunday Bubble” yet, but I can make a mad dash to church wearing bags over my shoulders, kids on my lap with torn nylons...therefore, I am a “Bubble Maker" building a strong foundation for my family!! 

*(In my defense to Jace's abandoment- Sam and I drove different cars to church that Sunday.  I thought he left with Sam and Sam thought he left with me and Jace thought we were at Choir Practice.  He played with his friends till everyone went home and then he realized we weren't there. )

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Shoes to fill

I watched my two small kids chase each other through the house.
Around and around they went, laughing with each step.  Being the "wise- and- all- knowing- mother" I could see the disaster begin to unfold.
After so many laps through the kitchen one of them was sure to knock their head on the counter corner or slam into a doorway.   
The odds were going against them as the minuets ticked by.

Why did I think something like that might eventually happen?  
Been there.  Done that.
Is that the Mantra of Motherhood? 
Am I just a child responding as a Mother?

Realizing Sam and I have 100% full ownership of our kids made my knees a little weak.  
What do I know about being a full time parent?
I feel like I'm a clever teenager -only in a 34 year old body. 
I sneak into the kitchen late at night to eat ice cream just like I did at 16.  
I still drive through "yellow- reddish" lights,  I hate cooking and I still stay up way too late with a boy!
I hit snooze every time my alarm beeps at me and I  spray my clothes with Downy wrinkle free spray instead of ironing!

Babysitting gave me no advantage.  I burned popcorn, killed a hamster, ate cold cereal and let the kids stay up past bedtime while on the clock!
I felt a great sense of relief when the parents came home.  The weight of being "responsible" lifted as I slipped back into "my world" with a pocket full of cash.
My 2 year old sluggishly falls into my legs after the injure free chase with her brother and says, "Mom...Abi needs water."
It's obvious these kids have total trust in our capabilities of being their parents.
It's all a fluke though.  I'm just rolling with the punches.

I fill her cup with water.  She sips and is off again.  
That was an easy one.  
What happens when she returns years later with a bigger dilemma?
Do I stop the injury before it happens or
do I continue to fill her cup and send her off again?

Sunday, February 5, 2012


Recently I had a long conversation over the phone with my Mom.  
When we talk I hang up a better person.  Our conversations start out superficial; she asks me what I’m doing.  My response is always: “Cleaning the kitchen.”
Then somehow brilliance hits me and I find myself yapping away over all the thoughts that have been shut up in my head.
I’m basically spewing at the mouth while she patiently listens or eggs me on.

Our conversations are rarely short.  
I love them.  
They are like the hug you didn’t know you needed until you are wrapped up in caring arms.
It’s so refreshing.

During our last chat I realized what my new 30 day challenge is going to be.

I do a lot of work on the computer for Rising Star Outreach during the day and I always end my days journal writing/Blogging.
What my kids see is mom sitting at the computer.  Not mom working on the Lifting Leprosy campaign in India.

I could (and would) spend hours at the computer.  I LOVE what I do, but I can only avoid my mothering/housekeeping duties for so long.
I would rather send emails to reporters to publish stories about Rising Star than unload my dishwasher.
I would rather update my blogs than go to the grocery store.
I feel so much of my life is choosing BETTER or BEST.
I can talk myself right into justifying my time is well spent at the computer.  It’s for a noble cause, right?
Unfortunately, it’s sending the wrong message to my family.  I don’t want them to remember me as always being on the computer.  I would rather have them remember me as always being in the kitchen!  

I realized, while talking to mom, that I can be distracted by so many things when what I should be doing isn’t as ”FUN“ as what I want to be doing.

I know there is a healthy balance to both my passions of motherhood and Rising Star.  I just have to be smart about it.
So, my 30 day challenge is to be MOM when the kids are home.  
Not "mom on the computer."
Abi is still a great sleeper.  She takes 3-4 hour naps each day, so while she sleeps I can sneak some time during the day.

I feel so lucky to be conflicted between BETTER or BEST.  To me I have the best 2 jobs on earth, but there is a flaw that will destroy both.
Starting each day on my knees and in the BOM is good armor.