Monthly Archives: January 2011

Harper’s Story.

This has the potential to be a long blog post, but with Harper’s dedication coming up this Sunday, I wanted to share his story with everyone.

Benji and I started trying for a baby in May 2009. We both had a feeling that once he graduated from grad school, we would most likely be moving. With that in mind, we wanted to try and have a baby a few months before his graduation so that we could be in town with the baby a little while before having to move away. I assumed that we would get pregnant right away. Boy, was I wrong!

I had known since high school that I wanted to be a mother, but there was always a fear in my heart that I would be unable to have children. I had no reason to have this fear, it was just there. With each passing month and each negative pregnancy test, this fear began to grow. One night in October, I finally broke down. Benji was at school and I was at home, alone with my thoughts and my fears. I felt a very strong urge to pray, so I did. It was not a pretty prayer, but mine usually aren’t. In between sobs, I told God that I was angry at him. I asked what was taking so long. I also asked why he would give me this heart for motherhood if he wasn’t going to meet the desire. I begged for him to just let me know whether or not I could conceive so that I could stop trying if I couldn’t. Somewhere in the middle of my throwing all of these questions and demands at God, I saw “Isaiah 54” in my head. I decided to look it up in the Bible, all the while thinking to myself that it would either be irrelevant to my prayer, or wouldn’t even exist (I was unsure if Isaiah even had a 54th chapter). In case you haven’t guessed it by now, I’m a negative Nancy 🙂

Anyways, at the end of my flipping, this is what I came upon:

Isaiah 54

I sat in complete and utter shock as I read the first few verses and then I began to laugh out loud. Eventually I was running around my house, jumping, laughing and dancing. I know I must sound like a crazy person, but that’s okay. It was the joy of the Lord and I’m not ashamed. I truly basked in his love that night. I felt in my spirit that this was confirmation that I would be pregnant and I was amazed that God cared enough about me to give such confirmation.

It just so happened that I had discipleship with my friend Susanna that night. When I went over to her house, I shared with her what had happened. I remember fighting the urge to cry even then because I was still so high on God’s love. I wish I could say that I stayed in that place of security, but I didn’t. It wasn’t even a whole 24 hours before I started to lean back on my own understanding instead of relying on God’s. Later that night, doubt crept back in and I started to “reason” what I had read, instead of believing what my spirit knew to be true. “Sing, barren women.” Was that God’s way of telling me that I was in fact barren? By the time Benji was home and I had a chance to share the story with him, it was muddied with worry and fear again. I remember asking his opinion. “Do you think that God was trying to tell me I’m barren?” He didn’t have an answer.

On October 18th (this date is forever burned into my mind), I attended a worship service at the Vineyard. Occasionally, they will have Prophetic Night, where you come and worship and listen to the Holy Spirit. That’s what this was. I don’t remember how long into the service it was, but Jonathan, the children’s pastor, eventually approached me to give me a word. I must preface this by saying that he didn’t know that Benji and I had been trying to conceive and he also didn’t know about my “Isaiah 54” experience. He stood there for a second, obviously trying to choose his words wisely. After a moment he asked if I question my fruitfulness. I began to cry and said yes. He told me that God wanted me to stop questioning him about this and he ended by saying “you’re fruitful.” After the service was over, he approached me and explained that he had been speaking in code so as not to embarrass me in front of everyone. He told me that I was going to get pregnant and that I’d have lots of children (good thing because I want lots!).

God was faithful –as he always is – and a year later, almost to the date, Harper was born! The night of his birth, Susanna came and sat beside me. She read Isaiah 54 to me and prayed over me. It was surreal. Nothing with his birth went as I had intended, but I felt no fear because I knew that God would keep his promise to me, and he did!

Harper’s dedication is this Sunday at 9:30 AM at the Tuscaloosa Vineyard. I’m so excited to publicly dedicate this little boy back to the Lord. I’m still in awe of the fact that God has entrusted me with one of his children. I feel very blessed to say the least.

 

Sleep.

My child has officially mastered it. No…he doesn’t sleep through the night (I’m not complaining…he only wakes up once nowadays). He has just learned how to put himself to sleep. This is a huge deal! I was beginning to think I would never see this day.

The first night we were home from the hospital, we were up until 5AM because the little Harp man just didn’t want to sleep by himself. We would get him to sleep, and then lay him down in his bassinet and he would wake right up and cry. We finally just put him in the bed with us. We started sleeping with him in our bed on a regular basis because he wouldn’t have it any other way. Those of you who have children know that you’re in survival mode for those first few weeks and you’ll do ANYTHING to get a bit of sleep. We had never planned on having him in our bed, but resorted to it out of desperation. While I love snuggling with that little bear, he is a loud sleeper, and he kicks the crap out of whoever is beside him. After about a month of him sleeping in our bed, we decided to try him out in the pack-n-play. On occasion, he would sleep in it, but it was rare. Most nights I would just give up and put him back in the bed with us. I researched all sorts of methods for getting that baby to sleep and I finally settled on one that I felt worked for our family. We started it about a month ago and the first day of it was awesome. I felt so encouraged because it was working and he was sleeping in his pack-n-play. With each passing day though, it was as if Harper became more stubborn and the method worked less and less. Last week, we moved him out of our room and into his nursery. He did great for two nights, but after that, things started going in reverse. The child would not go to sleep. I would rock him for 40 minutes. He would be OUT, but as soon as I laid him down, he would wake right up and start crying. On Tuesday night, Benji and I ended up giving up and putting him back in the bed with us. This was the first time he had slept in our bed in about a month. It felt like we were back to square one – talk about discouraged! I spent my birthday crying over this because I was so worried Harper wasn’t getting enough sleep. He was only getting about 12-13 hours a day, when a baby his age should be getting about 16 hours a day. Somewhere in the middle of my worryfest, I realized that I hadn’t really prayed about it so I decided to give that a try. Why didn’t I do that first? I prayed over Harper, his crib, and his nursery. He has been going to sleep on his own ever since. It’s amazing. I can lay Harper down in his pack-n-play (we’re at my mom’s right now) and he will just go to sleep. I just want to publicly say THANK YOU JESUS and I’m sorry I didn’t come to you first 🙂

Forgiveness.

A couple of blog posts ago I said “bring it on” to the year 2011. Well…it brought itself alright. The very first week of this year changed my life. For better or for worse, I’m not sure yet. I guess it depends on how things pan out. I would say for worse just given the circumstances, but I hesitate to jump to that conclusion because of the God I serve. He has a way of causing good to come from things that were intended to harm.

Forgiveness. I’m really living it this week. I’m trying to give generously because I know that the measure I use will be the measure in which it is given to me, and lord knows I need a lot of forgiveness, but it’s hard. I find myself constantly having to check my thoughts. My heart and mind aren’t in line with the spirit a lot of times…especially this week. Unfortunately, emotions don’t disappear when you forgive someone, so this will definitely be a daily process.

This smile has made the past few days bearable. I’m thankful for Harp in a completely new way now. Thankful for him as a person and im thankful for the timing of his birth. I think that was intentional on God’s part. Harper has managed to bring a little bit of joy to me and my family even though we’re in the middle of a storm. I think God had that up his sleeve the entire time. I’m so glad that nothing takes Him by surprise.

Two Month Check Up

Well, I think it’s safe to say I have a chunk on my hands. Today at Harp’s two month check up, he weighed in at 16 lbs 1 oz and was 23.5 inches long. This is in comparison to 9 lbs 11 oz. and 20 inches on the day of his birth. The kid loves to eat….eh…I guess technically it would be considered drinking.

Harper was given his vaccines today. I made a bigger deal out of it than it turned out to be. For a couple of weeks now, I’ve been dreading it and it ended up not being too bad. He did cry, but it only lasted for about five minutes. Some good ole’ fashioned mommy love calmed him right now and then he went to sleep.

Let me ask you guys something. Do you think it’s weird for a stranger to walk up to you and ask if he/she can put the pacifier back in your baby’s mouth? Well, this happened to me at the doctor’s office today and I do think it’s weird. I’m a germ freak and I don’t want any stranger’s hands near my baby’s mouth. When she asked if she could, I just said no, without even thinking. I know I had to come off as a jerk to her, but I really didn’t mean to. Harper is going to get sick eventually, but I’m trying to get him to the three month mark before that happens. So far, so good.

Unfortunately, I ended up getting rude with someone else after I left the doctor’s office. This one was more intentional though. Harper has acid reflux and is on medication for it. Before last month, I had never used Wal-mart pharmacy, but since they are literally right across the street from our apartment, I figured I’d give them a shot. I realized today that that was a big mistake. Last time I got the medication filled, they told me it would be 45 minutes. They have a texting service where they will send a text to your phone when your prescription is ready. After 45 minutes of walking around the store, I still hadn’t received a text. I decided to wait five more minutes to see if I would get one, and after five minutes passed, I figured there was just a glitch in their system. When I got back to the pharmacy, the lady informed me that they were out of the medication. I was not happy. I used to be a pharmacy tech and I TOTALLY understand that sometimes you run out of medication, but I was mad because they had let me walk around the store for nearly an hour without bothering to contact me. Harper was getting fussy, so that didn’t help the situation. The lady could see that I was mad and told me to wait just a moment. Twenty minutes later she informed me that they did in fact have the medication (apparently, it was stored in the wrong spot and they overlooked it), but not enough to fill my entire prescription – I’d have to come back for the rest the next day. By the time I left, Harper was screaming his head off.

So here were are today. After Harper’s check up, I decided to go ahead and get his medication filled again (the last one had 0 refills, or I would have just called in a refill – boo!). He still had a good hour and a half before his feeding time, so I figured it’d be safe to go to Wal-mart before heading home. I thought about taking the prescription elsewhere, but against my better judgment decided to give Wal-mart one more chance. This time I was told that the wait would be 35 minutes. I shopped for exactly 35 minutes (I know because I timed it!) and then headed on over to the pharmacy. I’m glad I went when I did because this is the line I encountered when  I got there:

They only had one employee checking people out, so it took roughly 30 minutes for me to get through this line. Harper was grumpy once we got to the cash register, but his pacifier was tying him over thankfully. I had just unloaded a 40 lb box of cat litter onto the counter-top when the lady told me that his prescription was not ready yet. I told her that at the drop off, I was told it would be 35 minutes, and that it had now been over an hour. I’m not going to lie, I was rude when I said it, but come on! Without apologizing, she basically repeated what had just come out of her mouth and told me I could go wait in line again. At this point, I told her to give me my prescription back and that I’d go somewhere else to get it filled. As if by magic, my prescription was suddenly being worked on…or that’s what they told me anyways. She continued checking other folks out while I just stood there waiting. Another 15 minutes passed and finally the medicine was ready. Harper had been getting fussy for a while, and part of me wanted to just let him cry so that it would annoy the pharmacy peeps, but I couldn’t. I consoled him as best as I could while waiting, but at the check out, I couldn’t do two things at once, so he started to really cry. The pharmacy technician said “bless his heart.” This really sent me over the edge for some reason and I let her know that he was hungry, and that it was their fault for making us be there for so long. I know…I’m terrible, but I was upset. Wouldn’t you be too, if you saw this face?!

The kid cries real tears when he’s hungry. Needless to say, I will not be going to Wal-mart pharmacy ever again, if it can be avoided.