Category: Serious Crap

Building a Family: When Everything Suddenly Changes

We now return to our regular programming. This is the final chapter in Building a Family. After having four children, Ashlee and I were scared to show much intimacy to each other. All four of them were within 2 years of each other. This left 6 months for recovery from C-sections, and 9 months for the next to be born give or take a few months in between. Basically, one of us were too fertile.  It didn’t help that we were now members of a catholic hospital. It was only a matter of time before Selah was born at 28 weeks gestation. Ashlee was in labor on magnesium for 48 hours. The IV had her like a zombie. The doctors finally decided that there was nothing they could do to stop the labor. They prepped the operating table. Out of all our births, this one was the most….. interesting? The anesthesiologist did her work in numbing Ashlee’s body, and the doctors got to work. Radio music was blaring in the background with the OB singing along. Total Eclipse of the Heart. They found a tear in Ashlee’s uterus where Selah was peaking her hand through. If they would not have...

Building a Family: NICU Vacation

Before I start, I wanted to apologize to anyone who was following this series on how my family grew to be from how Ashlee and I met to the birth of my children. I had to take a couple days break due to taking a sudden road trip to Arkansas for a funeral. I was away from my computer, tired from the events/drive, and couldn’t concentrate on writing. For that, I am sorry. Please don’t hate me too much. I’ll buy you an icecream or something to make up for it. And the saga continues!! You’d think after the birth of my two oldest, that we’d be done right? Wrong. It turns out, either I’m really potent, she’s immune to birth control, or God wanted to have a laugh at our expense. We had Elijah in 2008 at 32 weeks, and Emma was born 2011 at 30 weeks. They were both born via C-Section, and kept in the NICU. I lump these two together because anyone who has ever met them automatically assumes they are twins. They do everything together. If I ever separate the two, they talk about each other during the whole parting. Elijah has developmental delays both...

Conquering Fear with Love

“As we let our light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence actually liberates others.” ~Marianne Williamson In my 28 years of life I have come to realize many important (and not so important) things. For example, I have never really been one to get huge amounts of satisfaction from spending my days at home. I mean occasionally I hermit, but for the most part I want to work. I admire those who stay at home and love every minute of it. I have some serious respect for them; however, I wanted to have a career. In deciding to pursue a career in Para-medicine when my children were very young, I received some serious backlash. I felt so guilty at times not being there for milestones, games, etc… Yet I knew it’s what I was called to do. I continued on. I pressed beyond the naysayers and I did it. There were struggles, hurdles, even seasons of brokenness. Yet, in this season, I came to one of the most profound realizations. You see, I was telling my children to be confident, to have faith in their decisions,...

We Live in a Constant State of Fear

Being parents of a child who has transitioned into eternity has cut deep into our lives in many ways. But today, I would like to focus on one aspect. The midnight hour falls. Ashlee and I lie in bed wide awake, overcome by the weariness from a busy day. Neither wants to move, but we both know we won’t sleep until we do. Everyone knows how cranky my wife can get when she hasn’t had her beauty sleep. I reluctantly get out of bed to begin the night’s ritual. I walk through our dark house, tripping over Barbies, stepping on legos, and holding in expletives. I enter the boys’ room. Switch on the light. And I stare at their chests to make sure they are breathing. Their chests rise softly, but I am unsure. My eyes could be playing tricks on me from the tiredness that weighs them down. The next step is to uncover their feet, and run a fingernail down an arch. Their foot jumps. Alive. Next room. The girls are a little more difficult. Sometimes, they are shallow breathers. Sometimes they snore. When they snore, the whole room vibrates like a dragon’s lair, but you can never...

Walking Through the Valley Today..

We’ve all been there. You know, those days when you wake up and you’re feeling happy that life is going your way. You love your job. You love your family. Times are good. Then… …from what seems like nowhere, crap hits the fan. All that life once was, has changed in a millisecond. It’s in these moments of uncertainty that we learn our biggest lessons. Not only is our character tested, but our faith, our resilience.  It’s easy to be happy on the mountain top. It’s a whole different story in times of struggle. When life has been turned upside down and inside out and you are sitting in the valley. On occasion I find myself sitting deep within this valley. On December 10th, 2012, I found myself sitting in this valley. Today, I came upon another valley.  I chose to WALK through this very dark, uncomfortable valley. While at work today, I met one of the medics that attempted to save my daughter. I know they did everything they could. I know that their heart broke with mine that day. I know the sleepless nights they had, the pain they carried with them as they replayed that scene in their mind....