Mother's Day

I wasn't sure what to expect going into my 2nd Mother's Day since Noah died. And quite honestly I am not sure how to put all the emotions into words right now.

One thing I can say is that I am truly blessed to be a mom to 6 wonderful children! I received letters from the girls today that just had me crying, wow! They encouraged me in the things I do with and for them and they all included things about Noah and what he would tell me if he was here today. Then Erik made me breakfast on his own (an egg sandwich), it was so sweet! The girls each got me some gifts with their own money, what a sacrifice as I know they work hard to earn spending money! I know I often question if I am doing what I should be for my kids, but after the notes and things they shared with me, it was just the affirmation that I needed, thank you Jesus!

On Mother's Day, our church does baby dedication so we planned to have Olivia dedicated. Beforehand, we were asked to write something out for someone to read for us. One of the things our pastor suggested was sharing the meaning of their name and/or something special about their birth. So the following is what we had shared about Olivia:

“Our daughter Olivia is known as a rainbow baby, which is a baby born after the loss of a child. Her name means “Olive Branch” and in the Bible, an olive branch signifies peace. After the great flood, the dove flew to Noah and gave him an olive branch to show him that it was the end of the flood, giving him a sign of peace. Our Olivia is an olive branch from God and our son Noah, who died the year before Olivia was born. She was miraculously born on Noah’s 1st birthday, in the same hospital room where Noah was born & spent his 9 hours with us. Just like Noah in the Bible was given a rainbow after the flood and storm, so were we given the miracle of our rainbow baby, Olivia Joy.”

We felt lead to include Noah in Olivia's dedication not only because of the meaning of her name but because quite honestly, if he hadn't died, she might not be here right now. Noah & Olivia not only share a birthday one year apart but their existence goes hand in hand together, just the way God intended it to be, for reasons I may never know this side of Heaven.

I didn't know this beforehand, but the church gives a special book for the child with Bible stories after they are dedicated. On the inside cover, they had printed out what was shared in church about Olivia so she has that as a keepsake.

Mother's Day was also the 13th, the day Olivia & Noah turned 10 months & 22 months old. I admit, I shed tears the night before as well as on Mother's day. Days like today are bittersweet. Celebrating Motherhood with one of my kids absent from my arms just stinks. But what helped me today were those that said a prayer for me as well as the texts, emails and facebook posts I received. I appreciate the many of you who realize that today is hard for me. A few simple words may not seem like much, but when you take the time to acknowledge my pain, remember that I have 6 kids, etc, mean SO much to me!!

My homeschool co-op family gave us a rosebush after Noah died. As I came home from church today I walked past it and saw that there are several buds blooming! 

A rose bush has lots of thorns but even among those thorns, there are beautiful flowers. In order to get a strong rose bush and better blooms, the rose bush has to be pruned. I liken that to my life in some ways. Even on the tough days, there is always a small reminder of something to give us hope. God is kind of like a gardener, pruning me when needed and cultivating me into becoming the person He wants me to be. 

I received a sweet gift and Mother's Day card earlier this week from a dear friend. I was given a Willow Tree sculpture when Noah died, called "Angel of Remembrance" (the angel on the right). My friend Renee (Weston's mom) surprised me with a loving handmade card and another beautiful Willow Tree Angel called "Angel's Embrace". This precious figurine is a reminder that while I can't physically give my sweet Noah a hug, he is receiving hugs from the angels & Jesus until the day I see him in Heaven again. I imagine that my almost 2 year old would look like this child the angel is holding. How my heart aches to embrace him like that right now! I am so thankful for this gift Renee gave me! I will always remember Weston & Noah when I see it!

I also received on Mother's Day 2 unique "Noah" name photo's to add to his name album from my sweet friend Naomi (whose precious Lily went to Heaven last month).

Her hubby mowed Noah's name into the yard, so neat!!!

I am thankful to the many of you who helped make these last few bittersweet days easier to get through!!!

And of course I can't leave out my wonderful husband, who despite his upbringing,  has overcome that & let God mold him into the amazing husband and father he is today! He totally surprised me and spoiled me with something I've only ever dreamed of having someday.......
Not only did he get me this awesome Kitchen Aid stand mixer, he also got me

a whole bunch of awesome attachments that will simplify life for me!!! I am blessed to journey life with my best friend!

I know this Mother's Day was difficult for a lot of moms. As I looked over my blog reader, I saw many of your posts on the same subject and feelings of missing your children. As I read over them, I felt your pain. And I know many of you who don't have blogs but email and text with me also felt the same way, I prayed for many of you.

I came across a few links recently that may be of help to you and wanted to share. 

I hope wherever you are on this journey, that Mother's day was a day you were able to remember & celebrate ALL of your precious ones who make you a mom, whether they live in Heaven or on Earth. Each of your miracles make you a mom!!!

For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my
unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be. 
Psalm 139:13-16

Yard Sale Day

Every year our neighborhood has an annual yard sale on the Saturday before Mother's Day (I'd personally like to smack the person who picked this date, it doesn't make for a laid back weekend for us moms!) The weather can be fickle this time of year but this year we were blessed with perfect weather!

The kids and I were up at 5am. Ok, I was actually awake at 4 but who's counting. We did a lot of our prep work last night so it was just a matter of dragging out the tables from the garage and arranging things in the driveway. Whoever posts the sign for our sale has the start time as 8am, HA! A little before 6 am I had people waltzing through my garage picking through things already. In fact, last night as we finished prepping things, I had people rummaging through the tables IN my garage! I didn't care because they actually bought stuff, crazy!

In addition to selling our  junk   treasures, we also do a food stand. We borrow one of those nifty hot dog rollers from my husbands work (picture the kind of plump, juicy dogs you can get at a ball game, yeah THOSE yummy kinds!) We also sell drinks. This year, we went through 35lbs of Kunzler Grill Franks, and at the very end, ran out of drinks.....5 1/2 cases of soda and 2 cases of bottled water! We were B U S Y!!!!

Our kiddos were a HUGE help! There is no way we could've pulled this off if they hadn't pitched in.

The girls had their own table where they were selling handmade jewelry that consisted of bracelets and earrings. Susan gets these neat kits and makes some pretty cool earrings. Sarah also crocheted some baby hats. The girls did really well!

Here is a pic of their table at the end of the day. I was too busy to get more pictures earlier on so this only shows a little bit of what they had. They sold about 2/3 of what they made.

Your children need your presence more than your presents.
~Jesse Jackson

2 year blogoversary & International Bereaved Mother's Day

Today is a special day for many reasons. First, 2 years ago today I wrote my first blog post (blogoversary is like anniversary, except for a blog lol). I wish I could say I started this for happier reasons, but the truth is, I started this blog the day we suspected something was wrong with my baby (post found here). Little did I know what we were about to face. It really is hard to believe it's been 2 years already.

I started keeping a record of what all was going on as many people around us asked for updates and it was often hard to repeatedly keep talking about things as we were just emotionally drained. So I would give them the link to my blog for updates on Noah and how to pray.

After some time had passed, it was also then my hope that the journey God placed us on with Noah would in some way be able to help other moms and families who are walking similar roads. I have had the privileged of chatting with many of you and the blessing of calling you my friends. I am thankful for how God has been continuing to use Noah's life in the lives of others.

My precious Noah's feet in my hands


Today, May 6th, is known as International Bereaved Mother's Day. A day to remember the many moms out there who hold some/all of their children in their hearts instead of their arms. The traditional Mother's Day is often a bittersweet day for those of us who have children in Heaven. While we are thankful for our children who are here with us, Mother's Day is also a reminder that we are missing one of our children who also contributed to making us a mom. So to you, my many fellow Baby Loss Moms, I am thinking of you today as well as this coming week as you anticipate Mother's Day and saying a special prayer for all of you. If you need someone to talk to or have a prayer request,  please don't hesitate to contact me using the form on the right side of my page or leave me a message below.

I was given this picture from Tesha in honor of International Bereaved Mother's Day today. Thank you Tesha, this meant a lot! Stop by her page on Tuesday's when she holds a link up for BLM's.

Along the lines of Mother's Day here is a good post to check out~


Tonight is the biggest full moon of the year, otherwise known as a  supermoon. I wish I had a better lens on my camera, but here is what I quick caught on my tripod.

I wonder what this looks like to Noah. Missing my boy!

The joys of a dislocated knee

5 weeks ago, the kids were outside playing. It was Good Friday and we finally had a down day with no where to go. So I threw on some old clothes, pulled my hair back and got busy doing things around the house. Olivia was down for a nap and I was all set on getting caught up on housework and projects.

That is, until I heard a scream no parent ever wants to hear.

Just as I dashed to the front door, one of the kids came and got me and said Susan did something to her leg. I went running outside. She was laying on the ground screaming and in tears with her leg in a weird position. The kids said she was just running and this happened. A few times in the past, she has sort of twisted her knee and acted like this. All we had to do was help her up and get her walking and she was fine. So I assumed that's what happened this time. As I told her I'd help her up, she cried no, something is wrong.

At this point, my skills of being an EMT for the last 10 years kicked in and I started assessing her leg. Immediately I felt a deformity around her knee and figured she either dislocated it or broke something. I knew she needed her leg splinted and there was no way I could do it on my own or get her to the hospital in the position she was in so I told Sarah to run for my phone.

I had to call for an ambulance. While I was on the phone with the dispatcher, my neighbor had went and gotten Susan a blanket as it was cool & breezy out. In the mean time, Sarah went back to the house to grab me a coat as I was just in a t-shirt, jeans (thankfully I had just changed out of my flannel pj pants) and sandals.

Thankfully by this point I had Susan calmed down as long as no one bumped or moved her. Since the dispatcher knew I was an EMT, she didn't keep me on the phone thankfully. Just said to call back if she gets worse.

The ambulance shows up, unfortunately I didn't know any of the EMT's that were on (I volunteer with a neighboring ambulance). They cut Susan's pant leg so we could see what we were dealing with. She was bummed as she said they were the new jeans her grandparents got her for Christmas! I assured her we will get another pair.

They then got several splints so we could brace her knee. This was uncomfortable for her as we had to slightly maneuver her leg so we could get the splints on. Because of the awkward position she was lying in, we had to put a board under her to lift her up onto the stretcher.

During all this, Sarah had went back to the house, woke up Olivia, changed her diaper, got her diaper bag packed & put her into the carseat so she would be ready to leave. I wasn't sure if they would let Olivia & I ride in the back or not as it's really up to the discretion of individual EMT's. Turns out they had no problem, so I strapped Olivia's carseat in one of the seats and I jumped into another one. We tucked pillows around her leg as much as possible to try and brace her leg from all the bumps, because frankly, the back of the ambulance is a really rough ride as you feel every bump. I felt bad for her as she winced every time we hit a rough piece of road.

Olivia was less than thrilled with her first ride in the ambulance. Being abruptly woken then put in an unfamiliar place with people trying to talk to her made for a fussy baby. Wish I would've thought to take pictures of the girls while in the ambo but I forgot.

Once at the ER, Susan got situated in a room and I put Olivia in the sling on me. The doctor came in and confirmed that she dislocated her knee. Prior to this, the nurse said depending on the injury, she can have pain meds to help. Unfortunately for a dislocation, pain meds won't help and they have to just shove it back in place. By this point, the Dr had been lightly touching Susan's knee which of course had her in hysterics from the pain. I was standing right by her head, trying to comfort & hug her as best as I could with Olivia in the sling. I knew what was coming and just starting praying over her as I knew she was about to feel a few seconds of horrible pain.

As the doctor popped her knee back in, she screamed which in turn made Olivia scream and there was nothing I could do to help Susan. I've seen and experienced some pretty awful stuff being an EMT but nothing brings me to tears more than seeing my own child in pain. Thankfully a few minutes later she calmed down and said she felt a lot better.

By this point, my dad had came to the hospital to be there with us, that really cheered Susan up. It also helped me as they want to xray her knee while someone else took info from me. So grandpa went with Susan to get her xray.

Thankfully nothing was broke but they wrapped her knee & said to stay off of it until we could get in to see the orthopedic specialist. Needless to say Susan was disappointed that she couldn't do anything, especially seeing at it was Easter weekend.

We got into the specialist that following Monday. She did an xray and said she could see bruising on the bone that confirmed a dislocation. She also ordered an MRI to be done to see in more detail what is going on. Then Susan got fitted with a locked brace from her thigh to her ankle that she has to wear 24/7 and was given crutches. The doctor said this type of injury takes several months to heal and that basically, she has to just rest and not do anything.

As Susan processed this, she realized she was going to have to miss her gym & swim class, 2 different track & field days, etc. She did shed a few tears over all this which is totally understandable. No kid wants to be laid up, especially with the weather getting nice. Thankfully, several people came to visit her & to play games and some brought her some baskets/bags of goodies & activities she can do while sitting.

Next week at almost 6 weeks post-accident, I am allowed to finally unlock her brace so she can have some movement up to 90 degrees. She is also starting physical therapy twice a week. But she'll be in this brace till at least June (this happened in April). It turns out, both her kneecaps sit to the outside & she has loose tendons/ligaments in both knees. The Dr said it appears she was born this way and will eventually need surgery to correct both knees otherwise this will keep happening.

We have all learned to adapt and adjust with Susan's extra needs. The kids all readily pitched in to cover her chores without complaint. It's been a learning process but then again, what in life isn't? I have no doubt God will use this time to teach Susan and/or us something through all this. We certainly do take one day at a time....

"The Lord is near the brokenhearted; He saves those crushed in spirit. Many adversities come to the one who is righteous, but the Lord delivers from them all." 
Psalm 34:18-19

(thank you Renee for encouraging me with this verse, much needed!!)

I have 6 children, not 5

I guess I am in one of "those times" right now. I was with someone today who introduced one of my  kiddos to a friend and said I have 4 other ones like this one. I admit, I sucked my breath in, held my tears and kept my mouth shut as I know this person is from a different generation and didn't mean to hurt me by ignoring Noah.

But truth is, they forgot Noah. Not the first time someone has, and probably not the last. :(

This pains me to my core. Generational difference or not, it's very painful when people say I have 5 kids when in fact, my body shows I have 6 kids (yes, all those stretch marks and things out of place prove Noah's life along with my other kiddos).

I am heartbroken.

It doesn't matter whether it's been 2 months, 2 years or 20 years. If you ignore my son, it hurts all of us. And many people ignore my precious son. I'm sorry if my son whom died makes you feel uncomfortable acknowledging him. I only wish that being uncomfortable was all I felt. But truth is, I/we feel unimaginable pain. Which we'll all feel until the day we die. Be glad you are only uncomfortable.

I have 6 kids.


Grief & Mother's Day

This is a very good link to read. It talks about things I've shared, reminds me that I'm not alone. Thankful for someone speaking the words I've thought & felt.