"When a soul recognises the will of God and shows a readiness to submit to it entirely, then God gives Himself to such a soul and renders it most powerful succour under all circumstances." - Rev. Jean-Pierre de Caussade

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Levi Anthony

Yesterday marked a year since we lost Levi. For obvious reasons, I've been dreading the day, because this last year has been really hard and I thought for sure I'd be a complete mess all day. Surprisingly though, it went rather well. You all must have been praying for me extra hard, and God must have given me some extra graces, because instead of falling into a pit of despair (like I have a tendency to do), I was able to think about Levi in a good way, feeling blessed for the brief time I had with him in my womb. I'm really glad I have such vivid memories of him kicking inside me and of all my doctor appointments, hearing his heartbeat and seeing him on the ultrasounds. I'm also glad we have a few pictures of him after the delivery, because I know most people who've lost pregnancies don't have that. And as hard as that whole experience was, Logan and I both agree that plenty good has come from it - the most important thing being that our son is now with Christ in Heaven. Praise God for that.

Thank you for your prayers!

The will of God is never exactly what you expect it to be. It may seem to be much worse, but in the end it's going to be a lot better and a lot bigger. -Elisabeth Elliot

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Logan, Jen, and Marley

For today in the city of David a savior has been born for you who is Messiah and Lord. -Luke 2:11

Friday, December 24, 2010

And the journey continues

I really don't want to sound depressing on Christmas Eve, buuuuut I have an update on the whole trying-to-get-pregnant thing. I've held off writing about it because there were other things going - house, foster care, puppy, etc. - and I was trying to keep my mind occupied on those things. So, I'll have to backtrack a month or two...

At the beginning of November, I saw my regular OB/GYN, just for a check-up and see if there was anything going on. I know I don't ovulate regularly, so that obviously cuts down our chances on getting pregnant. So, my doctor decided to put me on Clomid, which basically helps you to ovulate. He wanted me to take Clomid, and then estrogen, and then get an ultrasound done to see if I was about to ovulate. He also thought it would be beneficial to keep a chart of my cycle. This was about a week after I decided to stop charting. I kind of just went with it, figuring it wouldn't hurt. Well, the next day I woke up and started freaking out. I was finally content on just letting things happen, without charting and stressing over it - so the whole Clomid process made me feel like I was taking a step back (I'm not sure if I'm making any sense but I'll just roll with it). Thankfully, God put the right people in my life that day, and I decided to go ahead and take the Clomid. When I went to get my ultrasound done, I was pretty nervous because I really didn't feel like I was about to ovulate. But alas, they saw what appeared to be follicles and the nurse practitioner said it "looked promising" (my doctor was out of town that week, unfortunately).

On Tuesday, I got some blood work done - a progesterone level to make sure I ovulated and an HCG level to see if I was pregnant. My doctor called me with the results yesterday. The HCG test was negative, so I'm not pregnant - which doesn't surprise me, because you just know when you're pregnant (at least that's how it was the first time). My progesterone level was low, which isn't good since I'd most likely not be able to maintain the pregnancy if I did get pregnant. As if those 2 results weren't enough bad news, my doctor also looked at my ultrasound pictures and said it looks like I have polycystic ovaries. That causes problems with fertility, as I'm experiencing now, so my doctor increased the Clomid dose for my next cycle and I'm also going to start taking progesterone.

While the news obviously wasn't what I wanted to hear, I am very grateful that I decided to go along with the medication and tests and everything, because now we can try to fix the problems (although you can't fix polycystic ovaries, but whatever). It is all very frustrating, though, because next week marks a year since we lost Levi. That whole experience was hard enough, and still is, so the problems with my fertility just makes everything harder. I know one day this is all going to make sense, and I still haven't lost faith in God's plan for us. But I could really use some extra prayers right now.

In case I don't make it to the blog tomorrow, I hope you all have a safe and blessed Christmas. I'll be enjoying it with my wonderful husband, cute puppy, and the best family a girl could ask for. :)

When the cares of my heart are many, your consolations cheer my soul. - Psalm 94:19

Friday, December 17, 2010

More about foster care

People have been asking about the whole foster care thing, and I've been meaning to write more about it.
We've already attended 3 classes (3 hours each), so we have 4 left. Two social workers teach the class, and they started with the basics - explaining the purpose of foster care and how they go about placing kids in custody. Now they're teaching us what to expect if we ever have foster children in our homes. Every child in foster care has been either abused - emotionally, physically, sexually - or neglected, or both. So obviously, there are a lot of issues to deal with. I can't imagine what it'd be like to be taken out of my home as a child and put in another home with strangers. Add to that the reason they were removed in the first place.
When we finish attending the 21 hours of classes, Logan and I will be dually-certified as both foster and adoptive parents. Even though the goal of foster care is to provide a temporary home to kids until they're reunited with their family, it doesn't always work out that way. Some biological parents have their parental rights taken away, so their kids become available for adoption. I'll give an example in case I'm not explaining it very well...
Let's say Logan and I take in a kid. If after 18 months, the parents have not cooperated and have not gotten their act together, OCS may go to court to get the parents' rights terminated. If that happens, Logan and I would be expected to adopt that kid. That's why they certify people to both foster and adopt - it helps to prevent kids from going from home to home. If for some reason Logan and I decide we don't want to adopt that child (which wouldn't happen, I'm just saying it as an example), that child would then have to move to another home that wants to adopt them. And well, that's just not cool. Children get attached, and their biological families have already given the impression that they don't want the kid...we don't want to add insult to injury.
I could go on and on about this, but since I'm not a fan on reading super long entries, I'll spare you and stop here for now. ;)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Meet Marley!

Yesterday I did one of the most impulsive things I've ever done...I bought a puppy. It was an early Christmas present surprise for Logan (and he was totally surprised and loved it, yay). Yeah, I know, I'm living on the edge. Kidding. Really, though, usually I think things wayyy through and end up talking myself out of it because I always think about the negative sides of everything. If that makes any sense. I don't know what came over me really, because I found an ad online while at work yesterday, called the guy to find out more information, and then went with a friend after work to look at the puppies. [In my defense, however, I had been thinking about getting Logan a puppy for a couple weeks now, so maybe it wasn't completely impulsive. Just saying.]And welllll, once I held this sweet, cute beagle in my arms, there was no putting her back. So here's the newest member of our family....Marley!
Yeah, she's pretty much the cutest thing ever.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Something we've been praying about...

Well, we survived the weekend. I think the stress made me get sick, but fortunately, I was able to take today off. Whew. Now we're debating on whether or not to tackle the living room floor ASAP or just wait until after Christmas. I guess it depends on what the lovely insurance company says...

So, there's been something I've been praying about since the summer. It sounds crazy to some people, and I've already had someone try to talk me out of it, but...I've been considering foster care. Naturally, Logan would have to be a part of it too, so we've been praying and talking about it for a few months now. To be honest, Logan wasn't thrilled at first, but he kept an open mind. A week after we bought our house, at the end of September, we attended an orientation class on how to become foster parents. It basically just explained the whole process and answered all our questions about it. The next step is to take 21 hours of classes to become certified as foster parents. Well, we started those classes last Thursday (yes, that night after our house flooded!). We have a 3-hour class every week for 7 weeks. Attending all the classes and becoming certified still doesn't mean we're obligated to take any foster children - in other words, we can still back out if we decide - so we figured taking the classes wouldn't hurt. And actually, we're learning some interesting stuff.

Logan and I have only told a few people ('til now!), and most people are surprised, mainly because they assumed we're trying to get pregnant. And we are still trying. But since we have a big house, and at least 9 more months until we have baby, we feel called to open our home to kids that really need it. You can think we're crazy all you want, and yes, I know we're young...you should have seen everyone look at us at the class last week. [One lady thought I was a foster child. Eh.] But for now, we feel like we're doing God's will. Please pray for us as we continue this process. :)

Thursday, December 2, 2010

The Joys of Home Ownership

Today I woke up at 6:15, just like any other weekday. Our bedroom is upstairs, so on my way downstairs I heard running water. I thought that maybe the toilet in the downstairs bathroom was just making noises (as it's known to do), but then I realized that the water wasn't just running - it sounded like it was moving very fast.  The bathroom and living room is lower than the rest of the house, since it was added on (the original structure is quite old and is raised). So, to get to the bathroom, I had to go down a little step. Well, I stepped down, and my socks were instantly soaked with water. Naturally, I panicked, and probably ran around in a circle, trying to decide if I should discover the source of the leaking water or just wake up Logan and make him do it. Since the rushing water sounded very close, I went into the bathroom and looked to the right at the toilet, and realized it was fine. I looked straight ahead at the tub - that was fine as well. I stood there, wondering where the heck the water was coming from - I don't know why it took me a few seconds to realize that the noise was coming from under the sink. I opened the cabinet doors to find water blasting out. Once again, I panicked, and ran upstairs screaming for Logan to wake up (it was probably something like "LOGANNNNN!! HURRY HURRY THE HOUSE IS FLOODED! LOGANNNN!"). He ran downstairs and turned off the water (yeah, I still feel like an idiot for not trying to figure it out). Then we go into the living room and realize that the entire living room  - the big and beautiful room I showed off not too long ago - was flooded. Logan said a few, ahem, choice words, and I cried, and we just stood in the water for a couple minutes. We just bought this house 2 months ago, and we had put down new flooring. We weren't exactly planning on replacing it anytime soon. So, when you wake up to something like that, you kind of don't know what to do - because you know there are a million things to do and you don't want to do any of it. But that's life.

With the help of Logan's dad and co-worker, we got the water vacuumed up and had de-humidifiers set up all day. We found out that one of the hoses under the sink had popped off, which is to blame for the flood. Unfortunately, both of us were needed at work, so we both did as much as we could and then went in late. Our house is a mess (at least the flooded part), and we're waiting on the insurance company to come check things out. Oh, did I mention that our housewarming party is in 3 days? Yep, perfect time for our living room to flood. But, I do have to say that Logan and I are VERY grateful that the water was somewhat contained in the lower part of the house. It could have been much worse. And, the party must go on. Just saying. :)

I'm starting to not like the month of December. Last December , I woke up in the middle of the night, and yelled for Logan in the same panicked way - although for a completely different reason (he made sure to point that out to me). In one way or another, those memories keep coming back.

And really, I'd take a flooded living room anyday.


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