August 26, 2010

The Story behind the Peanut

I don't really need to get in to how exactly it came to be, but here's the background story :)

Ben and I had not been planning on having a baby. We were really excited to have one someday, hopefully when he graduated from PA school, but that was two years away. I am the currently the only breadwinner, and Ben has to study or be in class a total of 70 hours a week, so we 'knew' it 'didn't make sense' and of course we had to be in the 'right financial situation' to have a baby, because that's what society says is responsible.

We had been having mixed doubts about taking total baby control. We don't want to have 19 children like the Duggars, but we also knew that I had some symptoms in the past of what could possibly be infertility-related and that this is a real issue for a lot of women, especially as they get older. We wondered in the back of our heads if taking our family plannng completely into our own hands, based on finances, would backfire. We had some questions that if we waited, would we regret it? What if we had trouble having a baby at all? Ben's family has 5 siblings, and children are so important to him, as they are to me. We didn't want to imagine a life without them.

But like I said, these were just thoughts. We didn't act on them. I think they were more premonitions of what was to come. I think God was preparing us for what he wanted. He was opening our minds because he knew we were going to be having a baby NOW!

About two weeks before I had any physical sign that I was pregnant, I found out I was pregnant... from my husband! Ben said he had been praying and felt like God was telling him to read Psalm 127:4. He's never read that verse before and had no idea what it would say. When he opened to it, it read:

Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are sons born in one's youth.

That was the specific verse 4 he was given. Then verse 5 continues with one we've all read:

Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them.

"What does that mean?" I asked. "We should try to have a baby?" He said, "I think it means you are pregnant". The Holy Spirit directed Ben to this verse, but also spoke into his spirit about its meaning for us. And it meant not that I should try to get pregnant, but that I was already pregnant.... and it was a blessing.

It's interesting how the verse specifically mentioned it being a blessing to have sons in one's youth, because that was one of the very things we were struggling with in waiting (Ben is 32, 6 years older than me).

I was surprised but still wasn't sure it was possible that I was pregnant. 2 weeks later, I found out via a test.

The great thing about how this happened is that we know God intended for us to have this baby now... and the first thing he spoke to us about it was that he or she was "a blessing" to us.... when our situation and society would say that it's NOT a blessing, but rather a burden, to have a baby at this point in our lives ... after all how will it be taken care of? It's not a matter of going from 2 incomes to 1 income- I am the 1 and only income until August 2012! So once I deliver we will be down to exactly 0 income.... and we all know how long a family can survive on that! Probably not even the length of the standard unpaid maternity leave, if that were even a route I felt comfortable taking. How will something be managed with a newborn, and without compromising what a newborn needs from his/her mother?

I don't have the answers, but I have the faith. God has spoken that this baby is a blessing, and I'll fight to believe it is so, even when I'm not sure exactly how. My friend who's a missionary in the middle east has reminded me that "hope that is seen is no hope at all".

I love how God operates so contradictory to how our world operates... the world sees children as a financial and emotional burden, one that requires the utmost planning- having all the proper ducks in a row, and being steady in one's career first and foremost. God sees any child as one of life's greatest blessings.

God remains as he always was... good. And he has given us the blessing of a future baby. We couldn't be happier, and more dependant on him, all at the same time. Isn't this what life is all about?

August 15, 2010


I'm going on my third month of being pregnant! Surprise! Baby G is on the way (hence the new ticker). More on this story later. Right now I'm so tired I could sleep 10 hours (and that's after sleeping 10 hours last night :)

Procrastinator's Update

I've been bad about writing lately... so here's a procrastinator's entry. Ben's family had their yearly beach vacation on Kiawah Island and, this year, everyone was able to make it which is quite a feat considering all the crazy schedules. Ben and I really wanted to go but because he didn't have any time off from school we were only able to make it for the weekend.

Ben finished the summer semester with all A's and as the new director of his school's PA-run free clinic. I'm very proud of all the hard work he's done while still managing to be an incredible husband.

He had only one week off before starting one of his hardest and longest semesters. Yes, that's one week off from May through December. One week. And what is he doing right now? Studying. Why? Because during the one week off that he is supposed to get, he received emails from his teachers saying they had to pre-read before Monday's classes. Like, 100+ pages.

Can you tell I'm a little bitter? (I don't need permission to complain on my own blog, do I?) I mean, give the kids a break... one week out of 8 months to spend undivided with your families and not have to study seems a bare minimum in my eyes... then you pile on work during that one week? Ugh! Ben's glad I'm not his mother or I would probably go in and give those teachers a piece of my mind!

On the bright side, we were able to spend all day yesterday together which was great, and we visited Ben's home last weekend. Ben also spent some days over the break r&ring with our friends Chris and Janette. Overall, we've maintained a pretty good balance this summer. My job is going well, though one of the counselors on my unit (there are 3 of us) is going back to school to get her PhD, so we will be down 1 man. I continue to spend my days in treatment teams, leading group therapy, checking in with the guys and trying to pour water on any embers I see that could turn into fires, and trying to restore competency so many of them can move on with their lives. Originally, I was trained to go into school counseling but when I arrived home from India mid-year I took this job instead. Now that a new school year is beginning and there were some opportunities to switch careers back to what I was really planning in the first place, I opted out. I enjoy the work I'm doing and working with adults seems like a better fit for me. Also, as time goes by I question whether working in a school is really something I would enjoy.
That's the current update. More later.