Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Offensive, maybe, but not apologetic...

So, I've wanted to post something along these lines for quite some time. It's something that weighs on my heart for more than one reason. I blogged it in my head last Friday as I walked, bawling, sinuses filling, not really able to take deep breaths as one should while walking up hills. I wish *you* could have been in my head because I don't know if this post will convey my heart that day, but I pray it does on many levels.

I don't support abortion, meaning, I personally would never have one and I don't think anyone else should either. I would love and support someone who had chosen that route or a person considering it as an option, but I would pray earnestly and do anything possible to encourage them that carrying their baby, regardless of circumstance, how the pregnancy came to be or what the prognosis of carrying a sick or dying child might entail, as long as physically possible, would be the most amazing, and heart-wrenching, life-changing, eye-opening, saddest and hopeful decision of their life.

Let me take you back in time to my 9th grade year. I was 15 years old. I loved God and knew He was drawing me closer to Him but didn't understand how that would look. I was actively involved in my CCD group and my local church. I knew I didn't think that terminating a pregnancy was a good thing so I decided to do something about it. I signed up to be part of a silent prayer walk in downtown Phoenix that went through the city and ended at the Capitol building. I remember praying quietly as we walked. I enjoyed talking to God so that part wasn't difficult for me. In retrospect, the part that was difficult for me were the posters the praying walkers held high in the air. Obviously. A terminated fetus is not a sight even the performing doctor or clinician should ever get used to. Yes, the point is to make an impression in the minds of the onlookers. Yes, people need to know the severity of what an abortion entails. But, thinking of the woman that everyone in town wanted to stone to death, I don't read anywhere that Jesus pasted a poster of her sins in front of her face to make her aware of her horrible choices. He said that if anyone was without sin, he should cast the first stone...funny that there was no one left standing. Jesus forgave her because He loved her. In hindsight, it is no wonder why men and women were shouting at the tops of their lungs, screaming at 'us' as we approached the Capitol. "It's my choice! It's my choice!" (MANY, NOT ALL, had a choice prior to having sex...) I don't recall being offended that they were offended, but I do remember thinking, as a 9th grader, that I was glad I got to pray and get a little exercise, but that what I had just done was the most ineffective effort in my life.

Now just BACK OFF anyone reading who has an elevated heart rate and angry opinions right now, labeling me as a 'Choicer'...Hopefully this post will make quite clear that my advocacy is for LIFE and LIFE alone. What I am saying is that what the people at the Capitol needed that day was not other people reminding them that abortion is a horrible thing. Science has convinced some minds that a fetus isn't a baby but hearts will always convince them otherwise, regardless of their choice. Instead, they needed encouragement and actual LOVE, support, HOPE, just sorta kinda like the way Jesus did things for any one given person in the Bible. I am an advocate for the sweet child living within an mother's womb.

If I had known that Noah was going to die when he was only 7 months and 2 days old, that 5 and a half months of his life were to be spent in a hospital with no answers, and that my heart would have ached for the remainder of my life missing him, longing to be his mommy on Earth rather than to a child in Heaven...if given the option to save myself the daily agony, I would still have chosen to have Noah, every day just the same. I am richer for knowing him. How could I not be?

I have several friends that were told that the baby they so lovingly carried within them was either: no longer alive, not going to live outside the womb for more than a short amount of time, or had either a fatal birth defect or rare genetic disorder that meant death in no uncertain terms. Each friend cried. Each friend trusted God for a miracle this side of Heaven. Each woman carried her child as long as her body physically was able. Some had to say goodbye quickly to their child. Some have bouncing babies living on earth today. In ALL cases, each woman was blessed beyond her imagination, even in her agony of the unknowns and in her grief, just from allowing herself to love her unborn child and trust God more deeply. She allowed her life to become a richer place, like soil that has to be overturned with added manure, to make a proper environment for new life to begin. Each learned more about love from their sweet child. Each has taught me so much.

The past is the past. I am not condemning women who have had abortions. I know that some loving mothers wanted their babies desperately. Some chose it out of convenience, or inconvenience, for their lifestyle. Those I don't condemn but I will boldly call selfish and, quite frankly, immature. They thought by having an abortion it would free them up for the life they intended. The irony is that when a child of God enters someones womb, they are beautiful and perfect in God's eyes. They are willing vessels to be used for His glory. They are ready to teach anyone willing to be taught.

Scripture says that "Children are a blessing from the Lord." Some would interpret that as people who have healthy, living children are blessed, but those who are unable to conceive or choose not to, are not. That is such rubbish! Just because the psychos down the street have children does not mean they are blessed! The kids themselves are blessings, and unfortunately ignorant, unloving, hateful people have reproductive organs, too! Children come into families in many ways, shapes and forms! They can come from your womb or someone else's, but they are the blessing, the actual child is the BLESSING! YES! One of my many points here is that the person who allows their heart to be transformed by a child is blessed, as well!

The choice is not whether a person should or should not continue a pregnancy! What it boils down to is whether a person is willing to embrace heartache and hope, love and despair, pain and joy all at once simply by allowing the sweet little life growing in them the amount of days ordained by God. I am not going to blow sunshine at anyone and say it is easy to love deeper than you ever dreamed possible and then hurt so badly that your heart physically aches in your chest. Daily. No. Losing a child sucks. It totally sucks, regardless of the amount of time in seconds, minutes, hours, or days. Yes, you will forever be the people on the block that lost a child. You will walk into public places and have urges to announce that your child died, that you miss him every moment of every day, and that you think it should at least merit a free latte, unlimited speeding tickets, unlimited emotional chocolate binges or a free tank of gas every time you say so! But more realistically, you will have grief attacks when you least expect it, you will be reminded of things and wonder what your child would be doing at such and such an age...you will never forget. If that is what some women who have abortions think they will avoid by choosing to end their child's life, they can forget it because forgetting won't ever happen. Forgetting is not an option. That child still existed and whether you think you allowed your heart to be affected or not, it was...what I want to encourage you to do is allow that child to fully affect your life for its intended amount of time...you will be in awe of the depth of love you will know. If anyone can name one woman on earth who chose abortion and came out emotionally unscathed then you can scratch everything written here...it's not possible.

I'm having a very difficult time putting into words the ones that flowed freely in my heart last Friday morning. Why I didn't sit down at the computer when I got home...well, let's see, I'm a SAHM, I can think of a million reasons. Anyway.

If you have had an abortion, God loves you dearly, just as He does every other person on this earth. He made you, He loves you, and He desires to heal you. He also forgives you if you will allow your heart to admit it needs healing. He is gracious. He is tender. He is not carrying a poster with your sins in red ink down the street for all to see. He isn't strapped to a bomb outside an abortion clinic. He loves you and desires to be known by you.

If you are considering to terminate your pregnancy because you have been given a death prognosis for your child, as painful as that reality is, I implore you to know that your child will be healthy in Heaven, waiting for you one day. In the meantime, allow yourself to love more deeply than is fathomable. You will not regret the power of that choice.

If you are considering an abortion because your pregnancy doesn't fit conveniently into your lifestyle, life is not all about you. It's not. No, it's not all about you...BUT, it can be all about you changing to be a selfless person...

My heart is this...a child, regardless of the number of days in your womb, or the shortened days on this earth, is a gift from God because anyone who meets that sweet baby, if they allow themselves to love freely, will never be the same. And there are a lot of people, myself included, that could really stand to never be the same out there...

Each child, even if their prognosis is no life outside the womb, deserves to be carried for as long as their mom's loving body will hold them. Yes, your heart will be wrecked because you may have to say goodbye to your baby, the one you painted the nursery for, the one you longed to read stories to, the very one you thanked God for when you found out you were pregnant, or the same one that began growing in you, not by your choice, but by force! I'm not saying any of these scenarios are easy! The reality is, healing from your brokenness will start the moment you allow your shattered heart to love that little life growing in you. It may take a lifetime to realize the profound impact your choice to carry that dying child in your womb had on you, but you will never be the same...and for most of us, that isn't a bad thing...
(Yes, I was on a lonnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnggggggggggggg walk...)

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Noteworthy sayings...

Em: Mom, this is the most beautiful dress in the world! When I get married may I wear it?!
Me: (In my head: Seriously kid, you won't want to...in 1993 poofy was cool, but I'm thinking you'll want something much more elegant and classy than mommy!) Sure, sweetie.
*My dress is in a trash bag in a box taped shut. It has never been dry cleaned...

While driving in the car one day...
Em: Mom, when I'm 16 can I wait until I'm 17 to drive, for extra safety?
Me: Sure, no problem.

A month later when going through security at the airport the agent asked Emily for her driver's license. I informed him she didn't want it until she was 17. Em piped up and said, "I think I'll wait until I'm 20. I want to be extra safe."

One night while being tucked into bed I asked Emily what her "favorite part of today" was...
Em: Cleaning the toilets.
(Earlier that day I had taught her how to clean the toilet. She proceeded to ask me if she could clean the toilets every week.)

Out of the blue one day...
Em: Mom, when I get married can my husband and I live with you and daddy? He can work at home with daddy.
Me: I'm pretty sure when you get married you won't want to live with us but if you still do, no problem!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Loved it!

I love South Dakota. It gets under your skin. I know a lot of people have their opinions, but if they have never visited then they just don't know that small towns, prairie landscapes, and really wonderful people live there. One of my friends lives in L.A. and wants to move to a small town where the corner diner serves a good cup of coffee, a fried egg, and a piece of buttered toast and the owner knows her name. Those aren't found a lot in L.A. but I know of a couple in Eastern South Dakota. I mean, if it weren't true that SD has a lot to offer, then why did a lot of my friends marry wonderful people from there? And though it's probably different for a native who wants to spread their wings a bit and see the world, I hear a lot make their pilgrimage back 'home' whether to stay or just visit because it's peaceful, beautiful and feels right. Maybe it's because you can't help but feel what 'Pa and Ma and Laura and Mary and Carrie and Grace' felt when they pioneered there. (Yes, memories of sub-zero temps all winter fade when spring arrives, but they don't totally disappear, which is why we haven't moved there...Anyway.)

I had a great trip! I got to see a lot of people I love and now I love a lot of new people, as well! I really enjoyed my time in Sioux Falls with the MOPS group where I shared. The women of this group are wonderful moms with so many different stories. Looking around the room at all their faces made me even more excited to continue to share not only Noah's story and our journey through it, but mainly God's message of hope and love through Jesus Christ. I came home totally inspired and recharged, which does not usually happen after taking a trip. I'm usually a little fried and ready for down time, but meeting these women, as well as connecting with family and old friends, and sharing tears and laughter with them really inspired me! I am sure when people hear that a woman who lost her little boy is coming to speak to a group, they envision sadness and tears, and frankly, aren't too excited about the prospect of listening to something so sad. However, I really feel like God has given me a lot of grace to be able to share our story with hope, total honesty, and real joy. That's why I know it's God and not me.

MOPS, http://www.mops.org/ stands for Mothers of Preschoolers. It's a great group that meets in many cities, maybe even yours, to provide an opportunity to connect with other moms in the same stage of life as you. I love the way it's set up because they have mentors for each table of 6-8 or so. Mentoring is one of my favorite things, so the structure of their organization is something I appreciate.

One of the ladies on the steering committee encouraged me to open it up for questions after I shared. I hadn't done that before but loved the opportunity. There was one question in particular that had me thinking long after we all left the meeting. To summarize since my memory is not the best, the woman asked how we worked through this with Emily, how we protected her, essentially. I said something about how kids are way smarter than we are and have a less complicated faith...that accepting that God is good, that He loves us, Heaven is a real and wonderful place, that there are castles, no sickness or disease or sadness, it's God's home and ours, and that we might even get to pet tigers there. As I thought about it later I realized that Heaven and the knowledge of Heaven is not something to protect our kids from, which means death is a topic that cannot remain taboo. If we really believe God is not a liar, that His word is true and that Christ literally endured the cross for the joy set before Him and to make a way for all who believe, then the main thing to protect our children from is the fear of death.

Imagine if the next generation, as well as your own, were to be free from the fear of death. It's difficult to do when your perspective is everywhere below eye level. But it's not impossible because with God, all things are possible.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Ooh, ooh, ooh

I just got to the Mall of America to walk aimlessly for a few hours in peace and quiet, take in captialism in its grandeur, look forward to purge more from my closet...But, I must tell you all something the guy next to me on the plane said. It will for sure go in the chapter, "What Not to Say to the Parents of a Dead Kid" or "Dumb Things People Say"...READY, HERE IT IS...

"I'm sorry. That must be so hard. But, I think the worst age would be to have a teenager die. That would be hard."

He started off right...then he kept talking. Just don't. Just be done with "I'm sorry." Zip. The. Lip. You know what, losing Noah 12.5 years and months shy of being THIRTEEN wasn't easier! Oh, yeah, I guess since I didn't get to know him as long or as well as a mom who had a teenager! What the freak?! $%^&* Do people really think one age is easier than another?! $%^&* WOW #$%^&* WOW Okay then, if one age is easier than another tell your dying grandparent or parent or spouse or sibling or older child (OR YOUR HEART) that at least they have lived for X amount of time and see what their response will be. NO! DON'T! JUST LOVE THEM AND DON'T DO MATH!

Okay, I feel better. I'm off to find another wireless spot for lunch.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

If Spring doesn't come to you, GO FIND IT!

Bobby and Bebe (my mom and dad)
Stacey and me (we met in 2nd grade)
My Aunt Diane (mom's sister), me and GG (my gramma (phonetically speaking))
Em and me with GG and Louie (note my grampa's styling glasses!)
For those still under the influence of snow, this is on its way...
Gorgeous gardens That's called grass...Em looked the part of a snowbird when she threw off her shoes and ran her toes through the green stuff
Tallest fountain in the world with Em running through the grass

Self portrait with my dad
Em and GG (she's 92!)
Again, those are flowers. They supposedly appear in the Spring in some parts of the world.
Beautiful gardens and landscaping at a resort nearby
The jet setter
Em and Grampa Louie
(Adrienne, powder that chin...)
Posing with a pine cone

A couple of weeks ago up at Red Rocks Amphitheater
My little fish at swimming lessons
No, that's not snow...it's hail
Red Rocks Amphitheater

"If Spring doesn't come to you, GO FIND IT!" That is my new saying! You can quote me. It snowed for two days before we left for AZ. It's supposed to snow tonight. (Update: It's snowing NOW) Apparently Colorado didn't get the MEMO that March 21st means Spring, not a continuation of Winter! I have a request for God in Heaven, AND, if everyone jumped on my bandwagon, MAYBE, JUST MAYBE, He'd say YES! Here's my idea: In Heaven, there can be Winter, but just in one area and it's only optional...you know, for those who just love to freeze their buns off! Just a thought. Creative suggestion. Whatever you call it, I'm just hoping in my neighborhood in Heaven, it snows in my neighbors yard, not mine...

We did find Spring, or really Summer, in Arizona. We had a great time visiting my folks, my grandparents, my aunt, and my best friend, Stacey, from growing up. That's a funny story I'll share some time. Em swam every day and asked the name of every cactus. I think I remembered most of them...The whole desert was in bloom and gorgeous! But, we left just in time as it hit 97 the day we left! Anyway, we got home last night and I leave before Jesus wakes up tomorrow (Just Kidding...He never sleeps, so you can call Him ANYTIME) to head to MN and then drive to SD to share on Friday morning.

A couple answers to some questions...
  • I'm still waiting on Noah's records to be sent to the Infectious Disease specialist, not a geneticist, to be reviewed. His office will call me when he's reviewed them so I can make an appointment. I am not holding my breath that this doc will have the answer to why Noah died. He would need physical evidence and perhaps poop from the CDC, so since neither of these still exist, my purpose in visiting him is to gain insight if there is anything in me that is dormant currently that could be 'activated' so to speak during another pregnancy.
  • Jason and I traveled a lot with an organization in the 90's called Teen Mania Ministries. We led groups of teenagers overseas on missions trips to Venezuela, Mexico, Siberia, and Russia. I also led two teams from the college where I worked, one with a colleague and another with Jason. Those took me back to Venezuela and Mexico to different cities. I loved both organizations and personally think everyone should cross a country border for their eyes and hearts to be opened to the fact that God made the world with variety. We've also traveled to Mexico with friends and family for fun. We went to Europe for two weeks (Germany, Italy, Switzerland, France, and Belgium) with our friends Chad and Cristine before any of us had kids. Jason had to go to England for work when Em was almost 3. We tagged along and hung out exploring mainly London for two weeks. Loved it! That's where I met Brooke Shields. Right before I was pregnant with Noah, he had to work in Japan, so, I tagged along for that week. I loved Japan and the people there. Our contact was a great guy that took us to some great spots. The Christmas after Jason's dad died, we went on a cruise with his mom and brother and sisters to Puerto Rico, Aruba, St. Maarten, St. Thomas, and Curacao. Our honeymoon was 10 days in Maui. I've been to Canada a couple of times. It's beautiful. This fall for our 15 year anniversary, Jason's earned a lot of points through flight and hotels that we get to go to the Mediterranean for a little over a week to celebrate. I still have to go to a few more states here in the U.S. to cover the map.
  • The book is coming along. I am very random so will need help from an editor to put it all into order, but I am pleased so far with what God's given me to write. I am waiting for some of our medical intervention to write the final chapter...it will be a proactive chapter on how we can raise awareness on things we have uncovered.
  • Someone wanted to see pictures of what I've done in the other rooms of the new house. JACK SQUAT would be the answer:)
  • My Ob/Gyn called me the other day. He is the coolest. I love him, in a strictly platonic sort of way, of course. He thinks if anyone should have more children, it's me and Jason. He was out of town for his son, Noah's, graduation when my Noah was born. I asked if he'd be in town, or even practicing, if I had another. He said it depends on how long I wait...
  • Jason and Em and I are going to see a Lyme specialist out of state in the next couple of months. It will be interesting to see what we dig up...I'll keep you posted.
  • And YES, anyone who wants to add a link to Noah's blog on their own blog is more than welcome. Though, a warning to anyone who links to it may be in order since I'm just kind of outspoken...

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Busy, busy

I have to do some business here: Jodie R. I only have your UK email address! I have an email for you but it came back to me...same goes for Randi Jo! FYI: My email address is under my "About Me" section on the left...

I have to confess that as far as blogging goes, I really only know how to type...Jason is the one that added the pictures and links and changed the polka dots to match Noah's room. Early on, people would ask me questions and only until several months ago did it occur to me that I could post a comment on my own blog in response to a question. I've still never done that. In fact, at my old job when I carried a pager, the days I lost it, I would call our office secretary and ask her to please page me...she would sweetly say, "Of course I can do that, but you could call it, too..." Technology + Me = Scary Stuff Sometimes. Some people sent me 'Me Me's' (did I spell that right) and I didn't respond because I didn't know what a meme was...Some kind readers awarded me blog awards and nominations but I didn't know what it meant (only do to an extent still) or how to link their 'kudos'. An old friend from college wanted to nominate Noah's blog last year for the Blogger's Choice Awards but she waited for my cue and I never gave the 'go'. I really wanted to share God's love in whatever venue He opened up but life got busy and I never got around to it. Regarding that, she wanted to nominate the blog for either 'Best Religion Blog' or 'Best Parenting Blog'. Really, it's difficult for me to think that Noah's blog fits into any category since I'm, well, scattered, and, to put it frankly, I can't imagine that taking one's child off a ventilator merits 'Best Parenting'. (I said it, you didn't, so don't feel badly...).

This is a random post, but thought I should cover a little business. I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to do a question and answer post, really about anything. I'm a very open person and love to talk about life, love, hardships, heaven, opinions, religion, health, grieving, friendship, scripture, whatever. No, I don't think I am "Dear Abby" or anything, but I didn't want people to think I was ignoring questions from over a year ago or even just recently. And, honestly, I love encouraging people and helping others wrestle through the hard stuff, just as others have stood by me.

I thought I'd throw it out there and see what happens.

And, in case anyone wanted to know, here's a 'Meme' to get the ball rolling:
  • I like all things chocolate.
  • My eyes are blue green.
  • I've always said I was 5'10" but I'm 5'9 1/2"
  • I was born in OH 1972, moved to CA for one year, back to OH until 1978, on to AZ, then to MI for one year of HS, back to AZ until 1990, then to OK for college, up to MN for 7 years, then to CO 6 years ago. (No, I was not a military kid.)
  • This summer I celebrate 15 years of marriage to my best friend.
  • I grew up as a competitive swimmer and played basketball in HS. We won state.
  • Majored in: Theology with a Missions emphasis. Minored in: Espanol.
  • I've been to 4 continents. I hope to hit a 5th next summer with my family loving on orphans and digging water wells.
  • I'm a middle kid. No, I don't feel ignored or like any less of a person. Yes, I am a peacemaker...for the most part.
  • I wear black most days, not because I am in mourning, though, I suppose that's appropriate, but because it's slimming, and, though I'm tall and can hide my weight, black helps me out.
  • I hate wearing sleeveless shirts. (See above)
  • My favorite food is any kind of vegetable. I love most veggies, except not a fan of collard greens...tried that once...not so much. I'm not a vegetarian, though...I love meat! I'm an O blood type, so I crave protein.
  • I would much rather read than watch TV.
  • I've wanted to go to Australia ever since 2nd grade because of the influence of my great teacher, Miss Kitzmiller. Hopefully that will make continent number 6.
  • I hate running. I like people who run, but I would much rather walk, ride my bike, ski, swim, or skip or gallop! No running! College mandatory 5k's every semester had a negative effect on me.
  • My parents have been married for over 40 years.
  • I've been invited to use Facebook but don't really get how to do it. (Again, see the equation above...)
  • In Russia, my goal on the subways was to make strangers smile back at me. Everyone was frowning!
  • I used to fear heights. If anyone from TM remembers the day I was on the 'Pamper Pole' for 45 minutes, well, I did it again 10 years later and jumped right off! I had had a child by then, so a stinking pamper pole was a piece of cake!
  • Obvious one: Favorite band of all time...U2.
  • I want to walk a marathon, perhaps this summer, in memory of Noah and to raise funds for several charities...I'll post on this soon.
  • I played the Viola in 4th grade. I can't read music but wish I could and want to learn how to play piano before Jesus returns.
  • I'm a very free flowing person, so structure placed upon me is a good thing.
  • I'm an idea person, but don't always know how to put feet to my ideas and dreams.
  • Noah's delivery was AWESOME! Jason, my little sis, and 3 dear girlfriends got to welcome him into the world. Em's delivery...well, that was just plain long and painful, but like you hear, once she was born, I forgot about the pain.
  • I'm an oxymoron because I am very open but also love my privacy.
  • When Jason and I got married it was 122 degrees!
  • We said early on in our marriage: Let's have 2 to 4 kids in 3 to 5 years. We had a miscarriage at 6 years, Emily at 9 years, and Noah at 13 years. Guess you can't plan some things...
  • I have always struggled with my body image. I don't hate myself, but I've always wished I were the skinny sister...
  • If I could do anything with this life, I would tell as many people as I can about God's love for them...so, I guess I'll just do that.

Random, I know, but hopefully it opens things up for lively discussion. I'm off to AZ with Jason and Em tomorrow for a quick visit to see family, back next Tuesday night. Wednesday home. Thursday at the crack of dawn I leave to share with some ladies in SD. Jason and Em will enjoy a little father daughter time and I'll enjoy a little me time and some girl time. Have a great weekend!

Ade xoxox

Tuesday, April 08, 2008


So, I am always curious and intrigued by the answers I hear from people when asked about their faith or what drives them. Typically when the answer of a person is a declarative membership to a specific denomination or organization, "I'm a Baptist...I'm a Presbyterian. I'm a Lutheran. I'm a Catholic. I'm a Mormon. I'm Unitarian. I'm non-denominational. I'm Charismatic. I'm New Age. I'm a follower of The Secret. I'm Christian Reformed. Dutch Reformed. Reformed Reformed. I'm Southern Baptist. I'm an Atheist. I'm Agnostic. I'm Muslim. I'm Jewish. I'm philanthropic. I'm Conservative Southern Baptist. I'm Evangelical Free. I'm Anglican. I'm Roman Catholic. I'm Orthodox. I'm Mennonite. I'm Republican. I'm Democrat. I'm Methodist..." I hesitate and wonder. I know the person desires to be associated with something bigger than themselves...kind of the point of religion and politics, ya know, but the fact that the first thing out of their mouths is the brand and type of their church or un-church, well, to me, it's always a red flag.

Now, before you go postal on me, I'm not judging you for belonging to a specific denomination. A long time ago I used to say emphatically that I was Catholic. After that, I made sure everyone who met me knew I was a Born-Again, Charismatic Christian. If you asked me today, I'd tell you that I love God with my whole heart and am so grateful He sent Jesus Christ to die on the cross for me. I will only live for Him and I will die for Him only. I do not pledge my life or loyalties to the Pope, Joyce Meyer, Kenneth Hagin, Beth Moore, Benny Hinn, Joel Osteen, Oprah, or any other big name 'evangelist' type, no matter their 'faith' or religion.

The only man that walked the earth that I would live and die for is Jesus Christ, who was 100% man and 100% God. The reason I am writing all this today is I feel strongly to encourage anyone reading to figure out Who or who you believe in and follow accordingly. The reason a denominational or organizational answer is a red flag to me is that some people associate more with their name brand church or community than they do with Christ, or whoever it is they believe in. Speaking specifically to people who associate themselves with the name "Christianity", the reality is, some people don't know jack squat about Jesus. They read more novels and watch more Oprah or 'JesusTV' than anything every written by the Creator of the Universe, ie the Bible and have no clue that this Jesus, the One way to God, made it possible to be free from the curse and live for eternity in Heaven, but they have no clue what Heaven is. "It's a nice idea and nice people go there, but bad guys don't..." Really? How do you know that? Did someone tell you or did you actually read it yourself? As a stay at home mom, some women find more comfort from reading whatever is on Oprah's Book Club or on her 'Favorite Things' episode than dusting off the family Bible and finding the true keys to abundant life. I don't hate Oprah, but she didn't die on a cross for me or for anyone else (just thought I'd throw that out there...)

Jesus didn't come to earth to say nice fluffy stuff that made people feel good and tingly. He didn't blow sunshine at people and say, "I'm the son of god." He said in response to this: "I charge you under oath by the living God: Tell us if you are the Christ, the Son of God," "Yes, it is as you say." Jesus didn't ever claim to be one way to God. He claimed to be the only way to God. He also never left God open for interpretation, meaning, whoever you think God is or who He is to you. This isn't like which pair of jeans fits you best or if you like your spinach fresh or sauteed.

This message does not have to be offensive...we either follow Jesus Christ or we don't. We know Jesus said He is coming soon. When that day arrives and we are asked about our faith, not our good intentions, our denomination or organizational membership, but our faith, what will our answer be?

Saturday, April 05, 2008

One day, this might help explain a few things...

I want to share a link to a movie that will be at the Tribeca Film Festival that may or may not affect you or someone you know or love. I've said it before and I'll say it again, I know there are many in the medical community that are still truly healers by nature, that is, people not driven by big money, politics, and drug companies or insurance demands. We met many of them at Children's with Noah. I've gotten emails from people wondering why I am not angry at the doctors for not having an answer in regards to Noah. My usual reply is, "Doctors only know how much they have either been told or studied themselves." This is true, but does not mean they don't keep looking for answers. I am frustrated that any doctor that begins to look outside the box for answers for their patients are often deemed 'quacks' or 'renegades'. They are judged by their medical peers, and some rightly so, while others, healers, are getting their licenses suspended.

From our experience at the hospital, something happened that I would venture to guess happens in many fields of practice. The specialists that are called on to a case state their clinical assumption and all the rest of the docs follow suit. This is profitable when the clinical diagnosis lines up with pathological or seriological confirmation of stated condition or disease. It is neither encouraging or mind-easing to the parent or family member of the ill patient, or the patient.

You see, most of Noah's serum labs (sent to actual brick and mortar labs approved by insurance) came back 'normal'. None, however, merited a clinical diagnosis of a rare genetic disorder, therefore, none was able to be given him. Defined that means that his levels for which he was tested fell between ranges considered 'normal'. The reason I say that is if a range is "0 to 7" and you test 7, you are on the edge of normal, but considered 'normal' by the medical community. You may very well be normal, but you know how you feel, and you feel 'off' not 'normal' but the docs tell you you are 'fine' according to their pre-regulated tests. It isn't their fault they are telling you that since the test instructions tell them that particular range is 'normal'.

Have you ever not felt good, but not bad enough to really merit a visit to the doc since they'd just say something simple like, "It might be a virus or little bug going around. Get some rest, plenty of fluids, yada yada." In some cases, that is the deal. A little bug. There are a lot of bugs. That is why we wash our hands. There are a lot of bugs. That is why the flu vaccine from 5 years ago doesn't kill the flu bugs of today, and the one from today doesn't kill all the flu bugs of today...There are a lot of bugs. A lot docs know about and many others that are newly being discovered and researched. When our bodies are healthy because we feed them properly, get rest, exercise and drink plenty of water, those bugs usually don't stand a chance against our immune systems. Our bodies are like superhero bug fighting machines!

In light of all things 'normal', yet really not accepting that since our son was in respiratory failure, had chronic diarrhea, had a rash at home prior to admittance, and was losing strength by the minute, we were blessed with a couple of 'outside' docs (docs that didn't work for the hospital and were not controlled by drug companies or insurance regulations). We sent Noah's blood and stool off to outside labs for testing outside the box. To put it in simple terms, it's kind of like this: there are big chains that are available in almost any city...you would recognize these restaurant chains, for example, anywhere you went because they are big name, mass quantity facilities. You hear that there are some other great restaurants in town that are exclusive to that city, are reputable, have fabulous fair and safe and great reviews, but, since you know the other particular chain, you consider it the safe choice. One thing is consistent, you can always expect the steak at one Outback to taste the same in the next town. However, you missed out on the gourmet steak at The Chop House because, well, Outback is better?!

Does this make sense or am I confusing the issue? (FYI, for those out of town, The Chop House is reputable, long standing steak house in Denver...yummy)

Noah's, along with my blood work, over a year ago, produced interesting results that the folks at 'Outback' only looked for with their prize winning recipe. Their battery of tests did not reveal what further testing did.

I have continued my research into Noah's lab findings because A: it could have only been passed through my placenta and/or breast milk, B: I've had another kid in my placenta who is 5.5 years old and want to make sure she doesn't have these bugs, asymptomatic and C: I, in good conscience, do not want to get pregnant again until we figure out if either Jason or I carry more of these bugs.

Click on the link below and view the trailer.


The ID doc I've been referred to does not treat for the condition, or co-infections, related to the bug in the movie trailer aforementioned. Many don't or won't treat chronic sufferers because their symptoms don't all fit nicely under 5 bullet points in their CDC medical journal.

Why has this disease become a 'relative' choice for doctors to treat or not treat? In science when you don't know enough about something, you do research. In medicine, unless you have a diagnosis, a doctor won't treat. What would they write on the insurance form? Noah's lab didn't show the antibodies, or at least for standardized testing, he was 'normal'. He did, however, have the antigens. I tested in 'outside labs' positive for several buggers. Out of the 5 antibodies tested for recently, I showed one, therefore, 'normal' according to my doc and traditional medicine. I know two women who have this disease full blown who also tested 'normal'...You see, insurance covers the first test...further testing that actually reveals conclusive information comes out of your pocket.

Regarding emails sent my way wondering why I am a little crusty toward traditional medicine, big business drug companies and "insurance"...no further questions.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Puke, B, & J

These are pictures of a little peanut that woke up at 4:40 this morning dry heaving...Dad's out of town, so she was sleeping with me. I had tucked her in and then went downstairs to work on the computer, pray, and keep track of Tricia's transplant surgery. The blanket (royal blue, orange, white) was made by Jason's Gramma Betty when he was a boy. Since dad's out of town (and since I didn't want puke on our bedspread...I'm not going to lie) she snuggled up with this to think of him.
The bucket you see behind Em's head is, well, where she continued to dry heave every 15-30 minutes from 4:40 until around 8:30. So far we have been in the clear. She couldn't even keep down water, but recently just had a tiny. She informed me that the bucket 'tasted' like the basement. I just bought the bucket last week and we mopped the basement since the cleaning crew didn't really do that prior to our move in...Apparently she now knows what concrete tastes like.
This is the picture of a kid that earlier this morning informed me she didn't want to eat breakfast, lunch or dinner. The same kid just had a honey stick to get some electrolytes, informed me she wants breakfast, told me I should indeed go out to dinner with my girlfriend tonight, and thinks that she'll be sitting in our bed all day watching retro re-runs of the Electric Company we got from the library. We'll be watching the re-runs and I'll be feeding her, but the going out, not so sure...

So, we'll save our P, B, & J's for tomorrow or Saturday. I wouldn't want to be spreading her germs to homeless people whose meals are few and far between.

When Jesus said to feed the hungry, I'm thinking He meant while you aren't contagious?

Wednesday, April 02, 2008


As I hit my knees yesterday morning, I got smacked upside the head...God wouldn't let me pray. He brought to my attention some outstanding unforgiveness in my heart. How frustrating. Now I have to go repent. Well, I had already repented to God, but I have to repent to some other humans. It's so humbling being a human...created in His image but a by-product of the Fall. Seriously, Adam, Eve, that better have tasted SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO good. Anyway, I'm thinking in Heaven there won't be room for unforgiveness, humility will be a no brainer since we'll be living in God's presence and we all know what happened when the last Guy was prideful in Heaven...

Anyway, I'm praying as much as I can about a lot of things lately, but since I'm a dirty, rotten sinner, I was wondering if I could get a few more of you out there on the horn to God about some people who are in need of prayer RIGHT NOW, especially today and this week...

Angie and family: http://audreycaroline.blogspot.com/ Their daughter Audrey will be born on April 7th. God knows the amount of time she will get to spend with her family outside her mama's loving womb.

Tricia is in surgery RIGHT NOW at Duke (on Nate's birthday!!!) She is getting her new lungs. Nate, her husband, Gwyneth, their daughter, and her family and friends need encouragement. http://cfhusband.blogspot.com/

Please feel free to share other prayer needs here, as we all know there are many...

And, if you could pray for me, that God would lead me in how to repent humbly and lovingly...I usually deal with conflict and unforgiveness right away...this one's been festering and apparently that's bad (smiley face).

P. S. Em is excited to do P, B, & J day, number 2, tomorrow! She's bringing friends this time! I love my kid!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

The number of our days

"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

So I've been thinking lately how worked up I got when the doctors said that Noah was going to die. I thought I believed that God's word was true and that only He could number our days. Unfortunately, I believed it the way I wanted to believe it...I thought that only a few months was no life at all and that since our family has more longevity than we know what to do with, that Noah would live against all odds well into his 90's. Obviously, I didn't believe God's word. I interpreted it for my own use...let me tell you, a lot of churches do. But that's another post...

You see, if I really believe God is the Author of all truth, that there isn't a lying bone in His body, then I must believe that regardless of the standard age expectancy of man, 7 months and 2 days were the "days ordained for me (Noah) were written in your book before one of them came to be."

So, I think about how many people have heard the words, "You have 3 months to live" or "You have stage 1, 2, 3, 4 and have such and such amount of time" or "Your baby has this condition and will not live outside the womb" or "Unless you get a transplanted body part, you won't make it to your next birthday ", etc., etc. I could go on and on. I realize that the physicians are not trying to blow sunshine or give false hope, but my heart here is to encourage anyone reading that humans are not God and have not ordained any one persons number of days. What I am saying, though, is that God will sometimes use humans to 'enlighten' us to a general time frame. What we do with that information is really up to us...

I'm having a hard time getting across what has been on my heart, but flow with me here...I have met, or known of, many people who have been told that their life was going to end in such and such amount of time. For the most part, they find a renewed sense of hope, even in their grief, and reason for living than they had been experiencing doing the daily grind up until that point. All of a sudden, the life they thought was so great and valuable actually has value...it's actually a treasured life to live instead of one to endure. Things that were important take on new meaning. Life changes. Perspective is altered. Because of those, I have been inspired. For others, however, despair sets in. The reality of death is paralyzing. "No, I don't want to die!" "I don't want so and so to die!" The one absolute in life, death, is knocking at one's door and most would try to do anything to keep it at bay. Except He ordains our days...

I, for one, have lived too many days without eternal perspective. Jesus said He was coming back soon. Granted, that was over 2000 years ago so some might not be in the habit of waiting for His glorious return. Life has gone on and people are busy...But, if God were to say that on such and such a day He was returning in all His glory, how might you live?

The reality is, all our days are ordained. God has said He is returning on such and such a day but we have not yet been informed of it. As a result, we get comfortable. I get comfortable. "Oh, surely that won't happen in my lifetime" or "I don't know when Jesus is coming back, so I have time to do such and such..." Imagine what your life would look like if you only had X amount of days...Imagine. God has blessed us each with gifts and talents, resources and passions. We do only have X amount of days.

Imagine what our lives could look like if we lived like they weren't our lives at all...