Been pondering what to share this month and I suppose it may be time for a bit of a personal life and family update.. Fittingly so with this being the month marking 1 year ago that we received twin baby boys into our home. Seems a bit surreal and sorry if you already know all the stats, but I wanted to write it down for my own remembrance 🙂
Last July 5th we said good-bye to our first lil boy #MrSunshine and a few days later we welcomed twin 4 1/2 month old boys into our home on July 11th. Because it wasn’t any legal or criminal issues, but merely a lack of proper support, as soon as birth mom was back in shape the boys returned home, no questions asked. I won’t say how many questions and doubts I had, but I chalked them up to me being overly sensitive n attached to the boys in wanting to keep them. In those 5 months we had definitely fallen in love with Bubba & Buddy and were heartbroken telling them good-bye on Dec. 7th. We were not in any rush to take new placements in allowing ourselves proper time to heal (more on that another day.) Also I kept somewhat in contact with mom and told her we would like to support and help her with the boys when she delivers new baby girl in February.
On a personal life level, just prior to the twins leaving we felt led to do a few tests and check out why I have been having such severe menstrual cycles. Crippling to the point of vomiting and, well, I’ll just end it there. We didn’t really receive the quick fix we had silently been hoping for, except that the Dr. recommended I double or triple my pain meds and swap off with tylenol and ibuprofen. My body had become immune to ‘2 advils’.. He, however, felt pretty strongly that I probably have endometriosis. And if you know anything about it, the only way to confirm it & repair it is through surgery. He suggested we check out the Creighton Model FertilityCare System and do some blood work as cheaper alternative ways to definitely track what is going on with my body. So during this kid-break, we took the opportunity to take the classes & learn the CrMS charting. We have been really impressed with it so far. God opened and closed some doors pretty clearly to us in what to pursue, and at this point we are happy & at peace where it led us. If you have any questions feel free to ask, & hopefully we will have more answers in the future.
December & January We took a Florida vacation, celebrated the Holidays with family, partied in the Smoky Mountains and just did life TOGETHER.. Emotionally we just really needed each other. And I didn’t see myself being ready for another attachment in quite awhile. The end of January, I was in contact with the twins’ mother and we ended up watching Buddy while she was in unexpected labor with baby.. she was not early but with many complications, it was prolonged and we ended up getting Bubba a few days later and were so enjoying babysitting them! They seemed kind of in shock but definitely recognized us and our home. Baby made it, but by a series of complete miracles and would end up having a month stay in the NICU.
And then the text came…I was actually rather shocked and my heart was kind of confused with all of it: “The boys’ trial home visit has been disrupted and they will be staying with you again for awhile.” Babysitting was suddenly placement. Of course I was excited to see them, love on them and watch them grow again. But so much had happened in those short 8 weeks and my heart was not prepared for this at all.. They turned 1 a month later & we got to celebrate their birthday with them! But at the same time, it tore me apart. So confusing and traumatizing for them. So disappointing for the bio mom & family. That’s not all, we also got 2 more of their siblings, aka sisters. Two days later 3 year old Glitterbug came & a month later we brought Miraclebaby home from the hospital. Yes we are busy and yes it can be overwhelming. Also YES, our hearts are full!
There are so many things I wish I could tell you about them and their lives.. But obviously it is not my story to tell. Just know that these are some of the sweetest and most beautiful children around. 3 out of the 4 are high energy kids, and cause me pure exhaustion by the end of the day. They have adjusted to us and life here quite well, perhaps better than what we have!
It has been over 4 months now being a family of 6. Let me tell you, becoming an instant family of 4 kids, ages 3 and under is no joke. And 1 year twins in the middle?! Of course the first month is all fun and everyone is doing great. Month 2 the crazy is high and the real is coming out, turns out 8 wks can raise alot of insecurities for babies. Month 3 we all just want to quit; but we keep reminding each other of that moment we knew God wanted us to say Yes and we keep pushing through, verbalizing that we embrace this life and family. Month 4 we have found a new normal and most days we feel like we are ready and ok for the long haul this appears it is going to be. And we are learning how to specialize in each individual to bond with them instead of lumping them together in an overwhelming sense where no one feels valued. We actually love doing this again & treasure having a family. Routines have definitely taken shape and bring security to us all. I don’t know how I do it most days, but have discovered that the best way to not become overwhelmed is to not ‘plan’ to accomplish anything. Lessen my expectations. Be satisfied in playing on the floor most of the day. Feel full and accomplished without crossing off a to-do list. Believe me, it is still a work in progress, that last one. But I have to constantly remind myself what is most important and not just in a cliche type of way. FOR REAL. Currently I am learning how to carve out time for what God wants me to do on a personal level and am in search of soul rest even in the daily ‘crazy’ schedule.
Recently I was kind of berating God, why He had brought us to a place of peace in saying Yes, and then just left us sit and fend for ourselves in this difficult journey? Why does it suddenly seem like a heavy burden to bear?! He reminded me of the verse my yoke is easy and my burden is light and that I had been trying to carry this yoke alone. I need to come away with Him, into His yoke and it will be free & light. That takes intentionality. Time to stop. Rest. Commune with Him and allow Him to guide every footstep and not just go go go…. In the midst of 50 things pounding in my head that need to be done, schedules & appointments nearly colliding, visits being rescheduled 5x in 1 day….I am learning to literally lift up my hands and say, You control it God and make it work out. Show me what I can cut out or do to make it work. I know You care & You will make a way.
I just really wana shout out to my amazing husband & partner in all of this, he pulls more than his share of the load. He changes just as many poopy diapers as I do, bathes the boys 99% of the time, does the nightly ritual of putting baby to bed & 100% cares for the boys if they wake during the night. Not only is he the entertainer of all things play in the evenings, he is also the first one out of bed & has coffee brewed for me when I drag myself out 10 (or 20) minutes later. He often cooks us breakfast, or half of it at least & never complains about helping me with last minute meal prep. He never leaves the kitchen until the table is cleared. If it looks like the dogs may fare too richly under our table he will find the broom & remedy that. He washes many dishes, and loads/unloads the dishwasher whenever there is a need. Many laundry-day evenings will find him helping me clear our bed and put away what I didn’t get folded yet. If I’m feeling like I need space, he usually figures out a way for me to get groceries alone or takes the kids on a drive or takes them outside. Anytime there’s even the slightest opportunity that one can ride along with him, he will be the first to suggest it. My chocolate stash stays well supplied. I am so grateful that he helps me around the house until the toys are picked up and things in order so that I can sit with him after the babies are in bed. There’s alot more, but you get the picture, he is Super Amazing & I wana be more like him. I’m seriously so humbled how well he loves me in word & action.
We were very grateful to family for watching our brood so that we could celebrate our 5th Wedding Anniversary in May. It was seriously one of the cheapest and best vacations we ever had. Originally our plans were a bit more elaborate to celebrate the big five. But then when we had to downscale we knew right away it was the perfect opportunity to relive our first dates and part of our honeymoon in MO. Something we had often talked about doing, and I’m so grateful circumstances led us in that direction. While it is awesome to make new memories, it is so soo good to stop and remember where we came from and how it all started. Even experience those first heart flutters again. 😉
We took the kiddoes to the zoo and the parade.. felt like big accomplishments and they loved it! They spend many hours on our swing set Dan built and the pool has been brought out of storage. We also added 2 baby kitties to our family and thankfully their airways seem to handle frequent squeezing quite well. They absolutely love pizza, so Lil Caesars has seen us quite frequently! We have had more than our fair share of sicknesses, Dr. appointments and teething irritability and are always so grateful for the few days of good health! And we have gone on multiple road trips, we love traveling and the kiddoes do fairly well with it as well. So yeah, its been pretty interesting around here.
And just like that we are halfway through 2017 already and it feels like it was just January. I’m presuming the rest of the year will evaporate just as quickly. One day blends into the next and the months slip away without us hardly noticing. We hope to look back at these days with fond memories and not just a blurred image. Are you saying Yes to what matters today?
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