Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Thankful for the Joy...

Losing our sweet little babies took me to a dark place. I was so, so very sad. Heartbroken. Far more heartbroken than I have ever experienced. I have lost babies before, ended relationships. But never before have I been this heartbroken. I felt so much anger. I felt like no one was hearing my prayers.

It has been a little over a month now. I am still sad, still cry so easily. Any emotion at all brings the tears to my eyes. My husband. Oh my. He and I have come through all of this so very much in love. It's weird, how something so painful can bring about a level of love and closeness that is astonishing in it's strength. I don't quite know how to describe it, but I have been marveling at it, and reveling in it. I am so grateful for it, because it has brought so much joy back into my heart. I am so grateful for him. Thank you Lord, for the gift of my husband.

The kids are sweet. They were sweet the whole time, but I was having to really dig to feel the joy they usually bring me. It's back. Some of it is a little bittersweet. My Yebbi - the babies really looked like him. The shape of his head, his legs, they will allow me glimpses of what our little George and Gabriel would have looked like. My Ben has been sick this whole time. Usually this would have made him extra grumpy, but I don't know if he is picking up on the warm, sweet vibe running through our house, but he has been pure joy. Sweet, kind, huggable. Wanting to snuggle and be held. He, Yeb and Luke have been full of funny things to say and I have been savoring each and every one. I am so glad to be "back"! I love being in love with all these kids. I love tucking a little boy under each arm to read stories and say prayers at night. I love how smart and funny Kolbe is. I love how much Jonah loves his brothers and spends so much time playing with them. I love how he likes to stand close to me, to prove how tall he is, and that he is gaining on me rapidly. I love how my Jenna is such a help to me, and loves to chase after Yebbi and grab him up for a snuggle. My Kenzie Rose, she is like my right arm. We sing in the kitchen, in the car, doing laundry. It is so good to want to sing with her again. Thank you, Lord, for the gifts of my sweet children.

Our little house. I was mad at it. I can't really tell you why. I think, perhaps, I have always looked at it with those rose colored glasses. We moved here 10 years ago. It was the first house we purchased together. I loved it. I mean, really, really loved it. It's an 80 year old foursquare with some arts and crafts influences. It needs plumbing work, wiring, paint, and lots more. But to me, it was this little haven where we were safe. Where we were raising all these sweet little babies. Somehow, when this happened, my house bubble burst. I felt like the house let me down somehow. I know it doesn't make sense, but I didn't care if we moved, if I never saw this house again. But, my love for this place, the joy I feel here is starting to come back. I know a house can't keep you safe from life, but up until this point, I really felt like it had. I love our house again, and I am so glad. I don't love the stickiness, or the mess, or the plumbing, but I love the arches, and the french doors, the solid cherry woodwork, the huge windows that I cannot bear to cover completely, as they let in so much light. I am happy we live here, again. Thank you, Lord, for the gift of a safe and happy home.

I am so thankful to be able to feel joy again. I know I will never get over losing my little babies, but I will be happy, feel joy. Even feel joy in knowing that I have completed the mission of getting my children to heaven. I have six children in heaven, waiting for me. I will do everything I humanly can to make sure the rest of us get there, too. I love you, my little ones. I will meet you someday. Thank you for the joy you brought me, so very briefly, while you were here. I am grateful for the joy you feel at the feet of Jesus, for all eternity.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Thankful for an Opportunity to Share...

As part of our Christmas this year, we have decided to help with a very special project. My very dear friends' parents run New Covenant Mission in San Benito, Peten, Guatemala, and they have discovered 121 people living in the municipal dump, including 49 children under the age of 8. If you are looking for something special to do for someone else this year, please consider donating, or even shopping and sending clothing or small toys and books for the children. Our kids know about this project and are excited about it. Please check out the video and consider making it part of your Christmas, too.

In the video, Mr. Spurrier mentions that 40 some people live there. Upon investigating further, they have found that it is actually many more. My friend, Amy, gave me a run down of the ages of the children, to make it easier to shop. I have included her list, as I didn't want to mess up any details! I am really good at messing up details:

"They can't take anything that is perishable because it'll never make it thru customs. mom and dad are taxed less if the tags are still on it bc of the used clothing trade down there... sounds crazy, I know. They really could use hats, socks and gloves, stuff like that. It only gets down to about 60degrees at night this time of year there but when your body is used to 120 degrees and you have no blankets to cover at night and it's windy... they freeze. Little dollar store toys and trinkets are always welcome too.

Here's the breakdown of the kids:
Girls (ages 3-8) : 11
Boys (ages 3-8): 19
Toddler Girls (ages 2/3): 6
Toddler Boys (ages 2/3): 4
Girls 12-18mos. : 2
Boys 12-18mos. : 2
Girls 6-12mos: 2
Boys 6-12mos: 3"

If you are looking for a something very special to do with your kids this Christmas, please consider this project. Our family has decided to help with this. We were planning on buying things for our babies, but since we won't be doing that, we have decided to shop and choose gifts to send, and offer it up in prayer for our sweet George and Gabriel. I think it will help my heart, and I know my kids will love choosing small gifts and toys to send. I wish I could scoop them all up and bring them home, but I can't. So, we will help in the ways we can. Blessings to you all as we approach this holy time of year!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Thankful for My Husband

I don't know if I've ever told this story here, but since part of my keeping this little blog is having a record, I am going to go ahead and tell it. Seventeen years ago last month, my husband and I met at the Olive Garden for dinner. It was a blind date. He was waiting for me outside when I arrived late, dropped off by my brother. As we drove up, I could see him standing there, and I guessed it was him, I think by the shirt he told me he would be wearing. Before I got out, I asked my brother if he looked like an ax murderer or anything. His teenage reply was something to the effect of "No, he just looks like a guy". While he was being mildly sarcastic, it made me feel better, so I hopped out, and approached the guy in the plaid shirt, leaning against the wall. I introduced myself,apologizing for being late (my brother and I had to move a bunch of cars just to get one out so he could drive me over) and instead of some polite reply he said to me; "Well, I already let one table go while I was waiting for you. We have to wait for another one." Clearly, I had already made a bad impression. Lateness on a first date, especially a blind date, might make the other person think you are not coming. I probably was just a minute or two shy of him leaving all together, though he has never mentioned. Hmmm, I'll have to ask him.

So, we went into the Olive Garden to have dinner. Me, babbling away nervously, him, barely saying a word. I was starting to think I was talking to much, irritating him, or he just didn't like me. So, we ate, and drank copious amounts of iced tea. When it was time to go, though, he held my chair and then gently guided me towards the door. We were going to go to the mall to kill some time before our movie started. When we got to the mall, Doug mentioned that he needed to use the restroom because all that iced tea had 'swoosh (with an arm motion and everything) gone right through him'. Well, that finally broke the ice - he turned beat red at the admission, and I giggled, and we were finally a bit more comfortable with each other.

We had spoken on the phone, and decided to see the new John Travolta movie, "Pulp Fiction". Neither of us knew anything about it, but it was supposed to be his comeback movie. And how bad could it be, ya know? We both had loved the "Look Who's Talking" movies and all of his previous work. Seemed like a safe choice.

Well, we got in there, and first of all, tons of cursing, scary scenes, sexy scenes. etc. are really embarrassing when you are sitting next to someone you barely know. It's like you are not sure how to react to them. Never mind the fact that I REALLY don't like scary/suspenseful movies, they just make me a nervous wreck. I was just about to crawl under my seat to hide until it was over when the main female character says something like "Don't you just hate all this 'getting to know you' bullsh*t?" Ya know, just what I had been doing all night long. All the "Where do you work?", "Where are you from?","How many brothers and sisters do you have?", of course not delving any deeper, but still a getting to know you session. Talk about awkward. It was just plain weird.

Anyway, Doug drove me home in his truck, telling me not to worry about the smoke coming out of the heater vents because he had just hit a deer in it, and had it fixed, but they hadn't fixed it right. (This would be the first of many, many deer he has hit in our years together.) When he dropped me off, I just looked over at him, babbled out a "It was nice meeting you!" and ran into the house. I didn't even give him a chance to walk me to the door. I can't remember if that was on purpose or not, but the next time I talked to him, he let me know that he felt badly about not walking me to the door. He had been a gentleman all night, and I hadn't allowed him that last courtesy.

We started talking on the phone the next week. We talked for hours and hours...long distance! I still can't figure out how we paid all those long distance charges, but at the time, we didn't care.

During one conversation, Doug was sewing Elizabeth's pants. I don't remember why he mentioned it, but something happened to me when he said it. It became really clear to me what kind of dad he was. After all I had been through with Meg's biological father, this was amazing to me. He was so aware of his child's needs, he knew her pants needed mending.

Doug picked me up for our second date. We went to a haunted house. I was so excited. I had been daydreaming all week of how he would hold my hand as went we through the haunted houses.

Turns out, I don't like haunted houses, which I didn't want to tell him when he asked if I would like to go to one. I wanted to be all polite and go with the flow. So, not only did he hold my hand, the poor guy held my hand, tucked the rest of me behind himself as he dragged me through the place. I just kept my eyes closed and stumbled along. I am a total chicken. Just can't take that stuff!

We went on a hayride after that, and Doug shivered the whole time because he had just worn a little windbreaker. This isn't relevant, except for the fact that we always talk about how cold he was all night that night.

We wanted to go to dinner after that, but it was getting late. One of the only places we could find open was a Country Kitchen. The food was awful, the place was kinda dirty. We got out of there as fast as we could, but weren't ready to go home, so we spent a few minutes trying to think of an appropriate place to go to be alone to talk. We tried a park, but promptly got kicked out. Who knew you couldn't walk through a park after sundown? After that, Doug took me back to my parents'house, but as usual, it was a lit up and there were a billion cars outside, indicating that there would be no quiet corner to talk. So, we walked around the neighborhood until it got too cold. So we tried to say goodbye in the driveway, but we just weren't ready to leave each other yet. Inside someone had music playing so we danced in the driveway, talking and laughing long after the music went off. I think we were out there for three hours. Neither one of us was cold anymore, and I knew. I just knew deep down that this man had been hand chosen for me by God.

We dated for a few months, but we both knew what was coming. We were married a year to the day we met. We've been together through lost babies, sick babies, blended family issues, and everything that a married couple goes through. He's my best friend. I talk to him even when he isn't standing there (which sometimes leads to confusion, because I am convinced I told him something, and he has no clue), he's the only one who knows everything there is to know about me. He has never let me down, and has always been what I need. Plus, He ALWAYS smells good, is tall enough to make me feel small, and has really bad eye sight, so is convinced that I am hot, poor guy. I think God did a pretty good job picking him out for me, and I am thankful. I hope and pray that I have been all those things to him.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Finding Some Thankful...

Being thankful has been a little bit of a challenge for me lately, and that's not usually how I operate. I usually am steeped in gratitude for all I have, especially the short people I trip over constantly while trying to accomplish any given task. I hold them in my arms and whisper prayers of thanksgiving. My heart is usually full. Gratitude comes easily to someone who has had sick babies live and near disasters averted.

Then this happened. When we were going through it, I was heartbroken, but found small things to be thankful for. Like our parish priest dropping whatever he was doing the day we found out to come to our home to give us and our dead, unborn babies a blessing. Like the fact that we were able to deliver in a hospital that was very respectful of our grief, and of our sweet boys. And the nurses who gave us magnificent care. And Sister Kathleen who came to see us three times during our hospital stay to pray with us, and finally, to give our babies a final blessing.

I was grateful that my mother and father-in-law made sure our kids at home had a hot, grandma prepared meal. I was grateful that my sister had come to stay with them, so that they would have a grown up telling them that everything was going to be okay, dole out hugs, and provide some cheer. I was so very, very grateful that everyone heeded our request to go through the labor and delivery of our babies alone. We were able to sit in the quiet, hold hands, cry, pray, and let sleep come when it would. We didn't have to pretend for anyone, that we were okay. For that, I was especially grateful. I was grateful that my mother prayed for me, and reminded me that Our Blessed Mother is right here, always praying for me, when I wouldn't pray myself. I have been very grateful for the words of other mothers who have been through this. Your words have reminded me, blessed me, and helped me in so many ways.

It was after we got home, when I had time to think, that the anger over it all set in. I was so, so angry. I had prayed, and prayed, and prayed for the safety and health of my babies. I felt betrayed, sad, confused. You see, God has so rarely ever answered my prayers with 'no'. I have had babies, lots of 'em. Prayers answered. I have had sick babies get well. More prayers answered. I prayed for these little babies for weeks and weeks. I was so scared something was wrong. Maybe that was God preparing my heart, just a little, for what was to come.

It's hard being mad at God. I'm not as religious as some, and more religious than others, but I consider myself a woman of faith. I thought my faith was deep, and abiding, and would accept whatever God had in store for me. I never expected to feel anger towards Him. I was shocked at myself, and the level of my anger. I begged Him to understand - all the while knowing that He did. He knows my heart. He knows it so well, that He knew how angry I would be before I did. Perhaps that's why I had this sort of intuition that things were not going to go well.

I am finding my way back. Little by little, I am less angry...less questioning. I am starting to accept that He creates for His kingdom. His ways are not the ways of man. (Sound familiar? I have been constantly repeating this to helps.)Some of you Catholic mamas will be shocked at this...but I haven't been back to Mass since this all happened. I have found legitimate excuses. But they are still excuses. My husband and I stopped at our local Catholic bookstore the other day, and with it's quiet music, religious items everywhere, well, I just wanted to cry, standing there. I made my purchases and we got out of there as fast as we could. I know when I go back to church, I will cry. My soul is already clawing at me to go. I wish I could go alone. I need to find a daily Mass where no one knows me. Then I could sit in the back and cry all I want, and no one would say anything to me. I want to lay all this at His feet, at the feet of my Lord and ask Him "Why?!" and yell at Him, because He can take it, and then hug Him, and have Him hug me back and tell me that my little babies, all of them, are just fine. That they are waiting for me. I know they are, so I need to start finding my thankfulness again.
So, in that mindset, I want, need, have to try and remind myself of all the beautiful things for which I am thankful. Tomorrow, I will start with my husband.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A New Way of Thinking...

When I was pregnant, my mind constantly revolved around how we were going to move bedrooms around for our twins, how many nursing bras I would need, whether we would be painting the bedroom that would be the nursery (for girls) or just dress it up a bit for boys. Doug and I had a constant but friendly battle over names going, and I would have to say that a good 70% of my thinking revolved around babies, doctors, pregnancy, nursing, or some other baby related topic.

Actually, I have been either pregnant or nursing or both for the last nearly 16 years. All of it. No breaks in between. To suddenly have only me physically dependent on my body is weird. I feel like I am having a bit of an identity crisis. If I go to take a pain reliever, I stop and think first, and then realize, I can do whatever I need to, without consideration for how it will affect a wee one. To some this might be welcome, but it just makes me sad.

I need a new way of thinking about my life, my own body, and the way the future is stretching out in front of me. We've had so many miscarriages, and this last one is beyond anything we have gone through before. My husband is staunchly in the "no more babies" camp. I wish I were. Six months ago, I would have told you I was in that camp too, and meant it. But, six months ago, I was still nursing our baby, Yeb. Six months ago I was tired. Six months ago, I hadn't just lost my twin boys. I know that another pregnancy would not bring back my boys, but it might fill some of the ache. It might (I have long since learned that a pregnancy does not necessarily mean a living babe in arms) fill my aching arms, and it might help the tears stop. I know that this is a knee jerk reaction to loss. I have had this same reaction every time we have lost a baby. The urge to be pregnant, hold a baby, nurse a baby comes on so strong. I think I am driving my poor husband crazy. I know he understands, and I am also aware that he considers it a normal, though irrational reaction to loss. He is waiting for me to get over it, patiently. He gently reminds me of why it's not a good idea to have any more babies (aside from the fact that he turned 49 yesterday). But, BUT, BUTTTTTT. I am full of "buts". But I want a baby. But Yeb is still so small that it won't be that big a difference, but I have wanted a little girl for so long. But I am so selfish.

I know what my husband, who has been by my side for all of the last 16 years of babies, miscarriages, emergencies, sick babies, and so many other things, wants. We've been through a LOT. Not as much as some, but still... a lot. He needs to be able to be his age a little. Not a new dad every 2 years or so. But that isn't even why. He thinks I have been through too much. He thinks we've pushed our luck too far, too many times. 16 years, 12 pregnancies, 7 babies. Three babies very ill at birth. It's been hard, and scary. And incredible. It's been our life. I need a new way of thinking about life that doesn't mean babies... and that's hard for me. I have dreamt of nothing but having babies since I was about 12 years old. I just wanted babies. A couple of times I have gotten to a point where I thought I would be comfortable if we never had another baby. When I got pregnant with Luke, I was so tired, and I was a little dismayed. But, he was Doug's (and God's) idea. He wanted another baby - and so we had our Luke. Then, after Yeb - being born c-section and sick, we thought that would be a good time to be done having babies, but I never really ruled it out in my head. I had dreams of a sweet little pink bundle. Those dreams are hard to give up, even though I know that we have been abundantly blessed. But, I guess it's time. My body has become more of a death trap for a baby than a cozy place to grow. We are getting older, and we could even have grandchildren in the next few years. It's time to close this chapter and move on to the next one. I'm not ready. I still dream of that bundle of sweetness. I still want babies. I guess acceptance of this new phase of life will come in time.

If you are one of my babies reading this, I want you to know this...all the heartache, all the scares, all the hospitals and doctors and losses...every second I got to hold you, nurse you, love you. Each and every single second of that was worth all of this.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

A Bit of Normal

When it first happened, everyone wanted to bring food, and tried to surround us with love. I just couldn't handle that. I didn't want anyone to act like anything was really out of place, or really wrong. Our moms brought food, and my sister-in-law (my mother in law fed my kids while we were in the hospital, thank goodness, and my mom brought so much food, it lasted all weekend!). Some sweet friends from far away sent a gift card to a favorite local restaurant (I still can't figure out how she did that so fast), which we used for a bit of  "fun" for the kids. But, when my sisters and friends asked when they could send a meal, I asked them not to. I just hated the feeling that we needed help, or taken care of, or that something so bad had happened that people felt it necessary to bring food. My kids cried for days, and my crying just made it worse. I needed to at least get the kids to a place where they could feel like everything was going to be okay, even though for me and their dad, and for them too, it was going to be a long time to get back to normal. I think my sisters and friends understood my need for normal, or were just willing to give me whatever I wanted. Either way, it helped me feel more normal, to have to fix dinner, or hear my sweet husband moving around in the kitchen creating one of his masterpieces. He cooked so much that week, and took such good care of all of us. I think he needed to be able to cook, do the things he would normally do. When something happens that is so painful, and so not what you were expecting, then you need the routine and schedule, and daily chores of life to keep you sane. At least, we did.

The house is starting to feel more normal, though my bedroom, it's hard to be in there. It's where I would lay at night, with my hands low on my belly, to feel their tiny nudges and pokes. Just a few days before they died, my husband and I lay in that bed for the longest time, him trying to feel them moving, and me giggling and saying "Did you feel that? Oh wait, there is one over here! Did you feel that?" Finally, after some chasing around, and me holding my breath, and him being very still and waiting, he was able to feel the tiny nudges and the roaming around of our wee babies. It was a special moment, one we've shared many times, but always special because of the newness of each little being. This time there were two of them, and we were going to soon know who they were; Priscilla Grace and Suzanna Joy, or George Ellis and Gabriel Akers (It makes me so happy to see their names all typed out, I feel like it makes them more real to people, it certainly makes them more real to me. And of course they are real, even if  we were the only people, outside the doctor and nurse and a sweet nun, who ever saw them. They are real, we have pictures, and we held them. I have a tiny stack of their 'things' in my room.). I was so, so hoping for little girls, but my, oh my, I would give just about anything to have my sweet baby boys here, growing and getting ready for the world. I am starting to accept what a dear friend said to me the other day, this was a different kind of blessing, but a blessing all the same. It just doesn't feel like one yet.

In this house, with noisy boys and bossy girls creating chaos all day long, it has gotten easier to keep the tears at bay, but they are still hitting me at unexpected times. I find something I had bookmarked to buy for the babies, or I smell a smell that doesn't bother anyone else, and think "oh, that pregnant smell aversion!" only to remember that I am not pregnant, though I seem to be left with a few hormones and other symptoms that have not yet gotten the message. Still, I am treasuring the last bits of this and other minor discomforts, as they are the last physical signs that my boys were here.

I go back to work tomorrow, and I pray and pray that no one says anything to me. They all know what happened, but only my family and a handful of people know me very well. I hate crying in front of people, but if anyone says anything to me, I know the tears will start. I just don't like sympathy. I can't handle it, don't know what to do with it. I haven't been back to church yet, either. Though I know my sisters and friends have told most people, and asked them not to say anything to me.  I hope this doesn't sound whiny, but if it does, so be it. I don't know how to handle it, otherwise. I just need to feel normal, if that makes any sense. I can keep the tears under control, if people just act like it didn't happen. But, at the same time it is this huge thing that is in the front of my heart every minute. One of the bloggers I read explained it in one of her posts. She said she couldn't decide if she wanted people to ask, or not to ask, or ignore her, or just pretend everything was fine. I feel just that way. Ask, or don't, or ignore me. I don't know what I want. I just want some normal. But I have a feeling that "normal" is a long, long way away from here.

Monday, October 24, 2011

My Babies

 I have been waiting. Waiting for understanding, a little lifting of the grieving, or some sign from God that there is a reason and a purpose behind something so hard and painful. I have been waiting for a consolation, or some other little wink or nod from God. I need one, I am a weak and sorry human whose faith has taken a beating. He knows my heart, and I have found some solace in the words of others today.

Quite by accident I have found a post by a Catholic mother, to her Babies in Heaven. It had such insight, and reminded me of my own beliefs. It brought me back, a little to what I have known and held in my heart all these years.

I am very blessed, I have 8 living children, and I am so thankful for each of them. In our 16 years of marriage, I have also miscarried 6 children. Last week, we went in for the "big" ultrasound of our identical twins, only to find out they had died. I was induced and delivered my sweet baby boys the next day. I am so heartbroken, and having a hard time dealing with this loss. I am so mad. I prayed for these little babies everyday. I had a feeling something wasn't going to be right, but it all seemed to be going so well. But now they are gone. We named them George and Gabriel. With my first loss, an ectopic pregnancy, I had a dream, a consolation, of my baby. He told me his name was Matthew, and that he would be our special intercessor, that he would watch over our family, and pray for us.I never saw him, but I love him so.

We lost two more babies before I knew I was pregnant, and when I carried Caleb, we lost his twin. I believe that one of their names is Jordan, after the Jordan river where Christ was baptized. I have asked for the other names to be told to me, or come to me, but I am waiting.  I pray, hope and believe that my babies are together, listening to the angels sing, and waiting for us. We have told our children that they are there, in heaven, waiting and praying for us. And I think God knows us so well, that he knows we would do anything to get to our children, even if it is hard, even if it takes a lifetime. Even when we are human and aren't smart enough to do whatever it takes to get to Him.  I want them so very much, and I am truly struggling now, but I am starting to remember what I have known all along. Our Lord is in charge, He creates for His kingdom. His ways are not the ways of man. My babies are safely in His care. I await the day I will see them again - they are indeed a most precious incentive. As is the love that only the Lord can shine down upon me.

What A Husband Is...

A husband is someone who lets you cry yourself to sleep in his arms night after night.
A husband is the person who cries with you when you need him to, sharing the pain, rather than letting you feel the pain all alone.
A husband is someone who holds your hand, never letting go, for 23 hours of  pain and sadness.
A husband is the man who holds each and every one of your children in his heart, in his arms, and cherishes them as much as you do.
A husband is someone who takes better care of you than you would ever bother to care for yourself.
A husband is the man who feels like half your heart, half your mind, half your body, and half your soul. Being away from him is nearly as hard as anything else you've ever done, especially when your heart is broken, and he is the other half of it.
A husband is the one person who can make you feel like maybe everything will be okay someday, but doesn't expect you to be okay right now.
Sometimes, a husband is the reason you keep breathing...when even holding your babies makes you cry.
A husband is the man who feeds your faith back to you, when you can't find it on your own. He's the person who reminds you that God is there, and that He is in charge. 
A husband is someone who asks for nothing in return, even when he has given so very much, but makes you want to find something you can do for him, just because of his goodness.

A Lesson I Needed Today

 Have you ever shaken your fist at God? I have been doing so much of that lately. Another Catholic Mama put it into a bit of perspective for me...

Thursday, October 20, 2011

And the World Keeps Turning

The world keeps turning. There is news, and events. People's lives keep going, and I sit here and wonder how it can be. My world is at a stand still. I don't even feel like I want it to keep turning. It doesn't make sense. I have cried and cried, but still the tears come. I don't feel normal, but I am trying to create some normal for my little ones. My poor husband has held me every night while I cried myself to sleep, and has been awakened when I cry in my sleep. I know it won't always feel like this, and that when I move through this a little, it will start to get better. But you know what my deep, dark secret is? I don't want to move through. I don't want to move through, because they were here for so short a time, and every day that passes takes me further away from them. I don't want to change my sheets, because that bed is the last place I knew they were alive, and it was the place I went to cry when I found out they were gone. I don't want or wish to be sad forever, but I feel like my sadness is the last remnant I have of them. I don't really want my body to heal, because these are the last physical connections I have to them. I know that none if this is healthy, and that some people will tell me that it will get better, or not to dwell, or whatever. Right now, I really don't care. I want them. I know, I know, they were never really mine. But you know what else? I really don't care about that either. They were mine. They were a part of me. A part of us.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Prayer for Miscarriage by Mother Angelica

My Lord, the baby is dead!
 Why, my Lord—dare I ask why? It will not hear the whisper of the wind or see the beauty of its parents’ face—it will not see the beauty of Your creation or the flame of a sunrise. Why, my Lord?
 “Why, My child—do you ask ‘why’? Well, I will tell you why.
 You see, the child lives. Instead of the wind he hears the sound of angels singing before My throne. Instead of the beauty that passes he sees everlasting Beauty—he sees My face. He was created and lived a short time so the image of his parents imprinted on his face may stand before Me as their personal intercessor. He knows secrets of heaven unknown to men on earth. He laughs with a special joy that only the innocent possess. My ways are not the ways of man. I create for My Kingdom and each creature fills a place in that Kingdom that could not be filled by another. He was created for My joy and his parents’ merits. He has never seen pain or sin. He has never felt hunger or pain. I breathed a soul into a seed, made it grow and called it forth.”
 I am humbled before you, my Lord, for questioning Your wisdom, goodness, and love. I speak as a fool—forgive me. I acknowledge Your sovereign rights over life and death. I thank You for the life that began for so short a time to enjoy so long an Eternity.                                                                                              --  Mother M. Angelica

Monday, September 26, 2011

A Post, Of All Things...

Anyone out there? Hello? Is this thing on? You mean, no one is here because I have been so full of neglect that this little blog sees absolutely no traffic? Shocking. I click onto the dashboard nearly every day. I think of things I need and want to write about all the time. The problem? Energy. I just don't have a lick of it these days. The thought of doing anything that is not absolutely required has just been more than I was willing to deal with, sadly.
BUT, I seem to have turned a corner! Yay - As of this weekend, my second trimester started, and all that over whelming fatigue and nausea lifted. I feel much more normal, thank goodness! My poor kids. They have been lacking in clean laundry and real food when their dad is at work. Got caught up this weekend, finally.

So...on with the post and off with the whining. We are pregnant, which most people probably know, with identical twins due in March. This was sort of a shock, and sort of not at all surprising. The night before I took a pregnancy test, I had a dream. I was praying, and asking God for just one more little girl. He and I started chatting, and I said, laughing, "Actually, if you could make it red haired twin girls, so that they would always have a sister near their own age, that would be great!" and God replied in the dream, "Alright, alright, twin red headed girls! Now QUIT BUGGING ME FOR STUFF, ALREADY! I have already blessed you so abundantly!".

When I woke up in the morning, I didn't really remember much of the dream, it was just there in the back of my mind, and I sort of laughed. Later, realizing that my cycle had gone l day longer than it ever had before, I decided to take a test. I was FLOORED when I saw those two pink lines. Truly. I know you will think that's crazy, given the number of children we have, but I was. We had determined that we were done having babies, for a number of reasons. We made it a whole two years, which we had never done before...not that we had ever actually tried.

We made an appointment with an OB right away, as I was on the hunt to find one that would let me have a VBAC. During our first appointment, I had an ultrasound because I have had a previous ectopic, so they always do an early scan to be sure the baby is where it is supposed to be. When the tech scanned over the baby, I could see right away, even though it was super early, that something was different. I started talking the same time the tech did... we were both seeing more than one baby. It was startling, for sure. One gestational sac, with two little tiny babies inside it. Sitting in the waiting room, waiting to see the nurse practitioner, I had a fit of hysterical laughter. I could not get the giggles to stop. Doug was just sort of in shock. Twins! I just remember that dream...and knew it was true, even though the tech was not 100% sure what she was seeing, so we went in two weeks later to repeat the ultrasound. Sure enough, two little babies!

Now, we still don't know if they are girls or not, and of course have no idea about hair color...but really, how could they be anything else? Now to figure out husband REALLY wants Priscilla. What do ya'll think? I kinda really don't like it, but he's kind of awesome, and has wanted it for years. Priscilla Grace, and we would call her "Rissa". Hmmm. And we still need another name...and boys names, just in case...
Publish Post

Monday, August 1, 2011

So much to tell....

Whew - it has been so long since I have posted here that I hardly know where to begin! So much has been going on around here:
*Swimming lessons every day at the YMCA
* I have been working in the office on Tuesdays and Thursdays all summer
*This week is vacation bible school at our parish, and I have two nieces and a nephew staying for the week to attend with my kids.
*And the kicker: We found out about two weeks ago that we are expecting a baby next spring.

Yes, another baby. I am a little unnerved, just because I am so ooolllllddddd. And the last one didn't go very well. And I am having a hard time finding a doctor who will do a vbac. Which is seriously ticking me off. I had SEVEN natural births! SEVEN. And one emergency c-section. So because insurance companies have incredibly bad policies, they want me to undergo major surgery. I don't think so. Even the AMA says that repeat c-sections are unnecessary and carry more risks than a vaginal birth - so what gives? I thought the whole idea of a profit margin for an insurance company meant minimizing the risk? Well, I am just going to hunt until I find someone who both takes our insurance and will let me have a vbac, barring any unforeseen emergency. Unless...
Of course, there has to be an unless....unless, this turns out to be a twin pregnancy. I had an ultrasound today at the OB where I was initially told they would do a vbac (only to find out later that they won't). The ultrasound showed one teeny tiny (5 weeks, 2days) gestational sac, two yolk sacs and at least one baby. But, the image was too small, and they couldn't tell for sure. So, I go back in two weeks for another ultrasound to determine whether it is one or two babies, or even a viable pregnancy. There is no reason to think it wouldn't be viable, but you never know.
This of course makes me nervous, (everything makes me nervous these days). Our last baby started as a twin pregnancy and we miscarried one baby at 7 weeks. So, I am just praying to God that everything will be okay. I am not sure what to pray for as far as the 1 baby or 2 babies thing goes, so I am just praying that everything is okay. I don't know what else to pray for - so that is what I am sticking to!
So, if it does turn out to be a twin pregnancy - which scares the bejeezus out of me - there is very little hope that anyone will let me have a vbac. In Ohio - where we have sued our OBs right out of practice in many instances, no one will let you deliver naturally if you have twins, even if you have never had a c-section, so I am doomed to the section - which is why I don't know what to pray for. For those of you who have had c-sections, you know what I am talking about. Dreadful, hideous, odious pain. It was so awful, and I have ZERO desire to EVER do that again. So, I am just praying that everything works out, that everything turns out okay. To pray for anything else terrifies me, and leaves me feeling unfaithful. He's got this. I know He's got this. I just don't have a handle on it yet, so I am just handing it to Him, and He will deal with it for me. If ya'll could throw a spare prayer or two my way, I'd be grateful. I am going to have an interesting time waiting the two weeks to see what's up.

So, how's  your summer going? Swimming? Vacations? Anything good going on? Need a prayer yourself? I'll keep you in mine, for sure!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Our Crazy Fireplace Project

So, my sweet hubby took a week off work to do some projects around the house. One of them was going to be to build me a set of cupboards in the back of our kitchen for additional storage, but I found a dry sink for a great price at a local used furniture store, and that solved our problem, so I had a thought - actually - more of a vision - we needed to rip the gross, horrifying, pink, fake brick off our fireplace and replace it with something humans could stand to look at. So, this big project that in my head, would take an hour, turned into a three day saga of demo, grout, and splinters, but eventually gave way to a beautiful new fireplace!

 Saturday - Fake pink brick and messy house!
Saturday night - Doug's fireplace plans - we originally wanted to use field stone, but the fireplace is actually fairly small, and we decided it would be overwhelming.
Sunday after church - This is the "Oh sh!t! What have we done?" Stage of the demo process.

Sunday late afternoon - This is the "Holy crap it is crumbling and what is underneath here?" part of the demo. Turned out to be beautiful glazed tile with a flor de lis centerpiece and some other decorative tiles. We were so bummed that we couldn't save it - but whoever did this fake brick not only used tile adhesive, they for some reason felt liquid nails was necessary. Wish we had known what was under there, we would have used much gentler means of removing the fake stuff!

Sometime late in theafternoon Sunday - Uncovering pretty tile - this was upsetting. I was having a hard time not trying to save it - but the top was crumbling.

Sunday evening - We were going to remove all the fake brick, but the tiles at the top and the concrete material under them started to crumble. We were not up for redoing the entire fireplace - not knowing what kind of expense that would get us into, so we opted to stop the removal at that point and come up with another plan.

Flor de lis.

Sunday night - the portion to be tiled is mostly clear of adhesive, and Doug had to do a repair to the main arch of the fireplace.

Super late Sunday night - First part of the sandstone tile application.

LAAATTTTE Monday evening - Mackenzie Rose  and I stayed up and grouted the entire thing, while Doug started the surround.  It took us about 1.5 Harry Potter movies to complete the grout. We decided to leave the flor de lis uncovered as an homage to the original fireplace, and I happen to think it looks very nice! I think Doug thinks I am nutso for caring so much, but I think it adds something to have part of the original fireplace.        

Tuesday evening - Finished product. Doug built the wood surround using reclaimed Tobacco Pine procured from my brother's garage - he  recently finished a home building project so we raided his supplies. Thanks G - I think it turned out beautifully! 

We still have so much to do around here, including getting this fireplace cleaned up, but it is so nice to have one project DONE! Two if you count the whole dry sink replacing the cabinet thing! Whoo hoo! Onto house cleaning, creating and setting up a family closet in my laundry room, finishing the big boys' room make over, and cleaning and painting a room in the basement for sealing from water damage, and then cleaning and painting the upstairs bathroom. Also touching up existing paint and putting up some of those corner pieces of woodwork to prevent paint chipping.  Going to be a busy rest of the week, hopefully punctuated by a visit from my sweet cousin Suzy and her family. Can't wait!  

Friday, June 17, 2011

Sleepover Season - a.k.a - Summer!

 Summer is here, and at the Jeffery household, that means ....SLEEPOVER! We had our first sleepover of the summer last night. I gave away my two girls, and brought home most of the boys - well, all the boys old enough to spend the night! We watched movies, played Apples To Apples, ate popcorn.

This morning we made waffles and sausage, and then had a few adventures, the first being a trip to the library to see a magician perform. They boys LOVED it! They all laughed so hard, and the magician was really good! It was great to see them all together having so much fun.
We came home to find that Doug had made cheese crisp for lunch - which is a big favorite around here! I'll share the super easy recipe below. After lunch we were off to the berry patch to pick some strawberries.
What a  bunch of hard workers! They each filled a quart container with berries, and we got out of there! Didn't want them in the direct sun too long!
Out of the mouths of a few of the babes:
Sam (nearly 7): "I work hard because my dad works me so hard all the time."
Tommy (9): " These berries are the best strawberries ever! They are so fresh and delicious!"
Ben (4):" I don't want to eat them, I just want to SNIFF 'em!"
Luke(6): "I never been berry pickin', Mom, dis sure is fun!" 
Liam (5) (in the car eating berries): "These are so delicious, but I want to save some for my family." This KILLED ME especially since he ate about half the quart on the way home. Sorry Stace! What can I say? At least it's fruit, right?
Kolbe (8) (ever worried about rules and perfection): "Mom, is this the right size? Is this big enough? Did I get this out of the right row? How red do they have to be?"

Caleb ran back and forth and had a big time, with Jonah, the nearly teenage butthead chasing after because he was too lazy to pick berries. Butthead.

They are currently all over at the park for a last hurrah before Auntie Amy comes and sweeps her kids away, along with Liam, and brings me back my girls. Jenna and MaryKate won't want to part, but they got a nice sleepover, too - and an afternoon with a bunch of other sweet little girls at their Little Flowers meeting. A lovely way to start sleepover season Summer! Have I mentioned before that I love, love, love that my kids get to grow up with their cousins? I am so very thankful for that!

Cheese crisp - something we Karchers picked up while living in the AZ - is super yummy, and super easy. Just preheat your oven to 400 degrees, slap some tortillas on a cookie sheet, and layer a thin layer of monteray jack, or cheddar, or whatever cheese you like to eat with Mexican food, and put it in the oven until the tortilla is crispy and the cheese is VERY bubbly - usually about 10 minutes. Top with salsa, sour cream, jalepeno peppers, whatever you happen to like. We eat this a lot on Fridays - as we usually don't eat meat on Fridays ( I served them sausage by mistake this morning - thought it was Saturday!) but, you can easily add meat to this by cooking taco meat, or doing some chicken on the grill and adding it before or after baking. My kids love any and every variation, and it's super easy. Nice on a Friday when you just want to chill!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Because of Mary

It's not a feast day of Mary or anything. It's Pentecost Sunday. But for some reason today, I am feeling very sentimental about Our Blessed Mother. I have been praying to her particularly hard lately, for guidance and for her prayers. I think this have left me feeling very close to her, and I just felt like I wanted to share a bit of her with whomever may be stopping by this page. So, here are some quotes from some other people who love/d her very much, as well as some scriptural quotes about her, in no particular order other than maybe the ones I love the most. 

Now there stood by the cross of Jesus, his mother and his mother's sister, Mary of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalen. When Jesus therefore had seen his mother and the disciple standing whom he loved, he saith to his mother: Woman, behold thy son. After that, he saith to the disciple: Behold thy mother. And from that hour, the disciple took her to his own. (John 19:25-27 DRB)

Never be afraid of loving the Blessed Virgin Mary too much. You can never love her more than Jesus did and If anyone does not wish to have Mary Immaculate for his mother, he will not have Christ for his brother. ~St. Maximilian Kolbe

Thy glory is great; for thou art exalted above all women of renown, and thou art shown to be more queenly than all queens. Julius Africanus, c. 160 — c. 240

And Mary said: My soul doth magnify the Lord. And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. Because he hath regarded the humility of his handmaid: for behold from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. Because he that is mighty hath done great things to me: and holy is his name. And his mercy is from generation unto generations, to them that fear him. He hath shewed might in his arm: he hath scattered the proud in the conceit of their heart. He hath put down the mighty from their seat and hath exalted the humble. He hath filled the hungry with good things: and the rich he hath sent empty away. He hath received Israel his servant, being mindful of his mercy. As he spoke to our fathers: to Abraham and to his seed for ever. (Luke 1:46-55 DRB)

Mary is the lily in God's garden. ~Saint Bridget of Sweden

Saturday, May 28, 2011

What would you do? What would Mary do?

"When the time comes, as it surely will, when we face that awesome moment, the final judgment, I've often thought, as Fulton Sheen wrote, that it is a terrible moment of loneliness. You have no advocates, you are there alone standing before God -- and a terror will rip your soul like nothing you can imagine. But I really think that those in the pro-life movement will not be alone. I think there'll be a chorus of voices that have never been heard in this world but are heard beautifully and clearly in the next world -- and they will plead for everyone who has been in this movement. They will say to God, 'Spare him, because he loved us!'"
-- the late pro-life hero, Congressman Henry Hyde

We, as Christians, are called to be counter cultural. I tend to forget this sometimes, surrounded as I am almost entirely by family and friends of the same or very similar beliefs. Most things I watch or read are based in Christianity, or are outright a Christian publication or production. Not everything, of course. I watch the Food Network - and truly you could not find a less controversial network, which is what I LOVE about it. I know I can turn it on and not be confronted with violence, scary commercials for horror movies (I CANNOT HANDLE THOSE COMMERCIALS!) , or any kind of sexual content. I will also watch anything  non-fiction,  Glee, which is my guilty pleasure show, and I have an odd addiction to Friends that has lasted for almost 16 years.  Anyway (sorry, stream of consciousness moment there), as I have mentioned before, I think this tends to leave me truly shocked when I encounter someone who is pro-abort. I honestly am stunned and have to work for a minute or two remember that not everyone shares my beliefs. So, when it does happen, something ticks off in my brain, and it becomes my sworn duty to change their minds, including  if they are misinformed about the Catholic faith or something political. I mean, whether they like flat leaf or Italian parsley isn't going to get my goat, though for the record, Italian parsley is gross - just sayin'.

So, if you have been here this week, you know that I had a run in with someone I talk to on Facebook occasionally. I guess, used to talk to would be more accurate, as I unfriended and unfollowed. It was just too much, and nothing I said was going to change her mind. Her blog got many comments on it, all supporting her, which is pretty typical of the blogging community. It's rare that anyone disagree with a blogger on her actual blog, lest you be labeled a troll, or a hater, even if you have valid points. That's one aspect of blogging - people can turn nasty so, so quickly - the anonymity and knowledge that you are unlikely to ever run into them allows people to be far more hateful than they would dare to be to your face. In any case, I deleted my comments, not because they were wrong, but because I didn't want to be obsessed with countering every argument anyone made. I had already spent a lot of time countering her claims about the church and the church run hospital she went to - (She was mad because she wanted a tubal and they wouldn't do it at the Catholic hospital. To my mind that's a bit like going to a Kosher deli and asking for a ham and swiss on rye - it ain't gonna happen, and why on earth should it?! Private establishments are free to run as they please -and  not go against their dearly held beliefs just because someone demands it).

So anyway, I am sure she thinks I turned chicken and ran. I am trying hard to not go look. I just need to be done - but as i say that - and here's the point of this post - my question to you, dear reader is this...
Is it  my moral obligation to spread the Word in this instance? Am I turning away from something because it's hard, when truly the Holy Spirit wants me to get back in there and fight the good fight? Is HE the reason I can't let it go, or is it just because I am belligerent? Am I possibly ignoring an opportunity to convert this woman? I have been arguing with her for a couple of years now, getting absolutely no where. What should I do? What would you do in my shoes? What would the Blessed Mother do? Somehow I can't see her in a big battle of words, but rather praying for her conversion. Perhaps that's the best thing for now, but I'd love to hear what you think...

Friday, May 27, 2011


I know I can be overly passionate about some topics. Yes, my faith and as an extension, the abortion issue are among the things I feel strongly about. I was raised in a political family, one who feels very strongly about what is happening in the country.

I have been talking to a person from high school on facebook for a couple of years now. She and I tend to disagree rather vehemently on abortion issues and religion. I thought we were having heated, yet respectful arguments. But, I decided  a few months ago that the arguing was taking up too much of my time, and she often had inflammatory posts and statuses, so I just blocked her content. I didn't unfriend, just blocked it so that I would not feel like I had to comment on everything she had to say. I just felt like it was better that way.

I had also been reading her blog - she only had a couple of posts up before she stopped blogging, so it didn't occur to me to take her out of my Google reader. Yesterday she popped up with a truly angry post, directed at Christianity, and pro-lifers. To be fair, she was mad about legislation recently introduced to the Georgia legislature (among other things) by House Republican Bobby Franklin - crazy, nutso legislation. He's been introducing it since 2002, so it's old news. Why it is suddenly making news is beyond me. Anyway, she was very angry, and  criticized Catholic hospitals for not performing abortions or sterilization procedures (this is a whole other post). This of course, got my back up, and I had to respond. I probably over did it, and probably did not sound like the Christian I claim to be (I'm not perfect - a work in progress just like anyone else), but I just can't understand ... Can someone please explain to me how it is okay to kill a baby? Life at the moment of conception is scientifically proven - to me it is a no-brainer. But I want to understand the mindset. She accuses Christians of being brainwashed. I believe she has allowed herself to believe what she wants, hook, line and sinker - and it's all lies. The people who started the pro-abort movement in this country can tell you it's all lies. Why then, is it defended, and people like me, who want to protect the unborn, are mocked? I have posted this several times today, but I will do it again:
“If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Re...member the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours."
—John 15:18-20
For some reason, after posting to her blog my apologies for being overly harsh,  I decided to check her Facebook wall. I must be twisted or have some propensity towards self flagellation. She and some of her Facebook friends were mocking me, accusing me of reporting her facebook posts as spam (I didn't even know she had written any, I had blocked her content)  - it's okay, I know they think I am a nut. I didn't even mind when someone commented that she was talented for bringing a "True Believer" out of the woodwork. I took that as a compliment actually, but when she described me as "turning mean" when I couldn't get her to agree, I was actually hurt. I think our discussions have been pretty respectful. I don't use profanity, I try to explain my point as best I can.
I am honestly flabbergasted when people don't know what's behind planned parenthood, abortion, NARAL, and the like. They get so angry when a "woman's right to choose" is threatened, but they think nothing of the child. Please, I am dead serious, someone explain this to me. But please, be factual. Don't spout opinions and invented numbers. Don't tell me a baby is better of dead because of horrible parents or circumstances. I believe that EVERY SINGLE CHILD should get a shot at life. And yes, my faith is enormously wrapped up in this, but if you read my last post, you know it's not only faith, it is my belief in the Constitution of this great nation. It's being abused in so many ways, but honestly, this is the most egregious. When in the WORLD did we get so arrogant as to think we should determine who lives and who dies?!

Please - someone who understands this - please explain it to me. I truly don't get it. I am not sure that I will be able to comprehend, and I know you won't change my mind, but I would like some insight  - truly. And I'm not talking about the rape/incest/health of the mother 1%, I'm talking about the other 99%. Don't get me wrong, I don't agree with abortion under ANY circumstance. But I have heard those arguments, and I have my beliefs in regards to those as well. But how does anyone justify the rest? 

In the end, I went back and deleted all of my comments from her blog. They weren't being heard anyway. I unfriended on Facebook, as I thought that best to keep my thoughts from turning entirely uncharitable. I was spending too much time on it when it wasn't going to win any hearts. I need to learn how to pick my battles. That one was lost. So, I went upstairs, cuddled three smelly, gorgeous little boys. I read books and sang some songs and prayed with them. They will be the ones who win this. Our children will change their minds. I know it. I can feel it happening. So many are starting to understand, finally. They are starting to see. I pray it continues. I know it will - I just hope and pray I am alive the day this country decides it is done killing it's children. Jesus...have mercy on us and on the whole world...Blessed Mother of God, pray for us. Amen.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Pro-Life or Pro-Choice?

 I've been doing some reading and reacting tonight, and I just really felt this needed re -posting. I apologize if you have read it before~

What does it mean to be pro-life or pro-choice?  It's an interesting question. Katrina from They All Call Me Mom, wrote a post the other day entitled "Am I Pro-Choice?". In it she states that while she is in her heart, staunchly pro-life, she does not know if, given a vote, she could ever vote to outlaw abortion entirely. Katrina cites, as many others do, that she would never want a woman resorting to a back alley abortion, and possibly lose her life as well as her unborn child. When I replied with a few points as to why the procedure should not be legal, she invited me to cross post.
I have a two-fold argument when it comes to the legalization of abortion. The first, to get it out of the way, is the constitutional legality - is it constitutional? And should it be under the state government, or federal? So, the first part of my two fold argument is also two-fold. And no, I don't think that makes it a three fold argument! (Sorry, this discussion does not lend itself to levity.) (For an abortion legalization time line, check
1. I do believe that Roe vs. Wade was an unconstitutional decision by the Supreme Court. The court ruled that  "a constitutional right to privacy exists that protects a woman's decision to have an abortion" and with that, the U.S. Supreme Court legalized abortion on demand.This decision was based on a number of items of false evidence:
A. One being that the majority of the population wanted it to be legal. Founder of NARAL, Dr. Bernard Nathanson has admitted that he inflated many statistics to sway both the public and the courts to allow abortion to be legalized.
B. Secondly, the Court took into consideration when life begins, and it of course, did not have the scientific advances we have now, knowing full well that life begins at conception (not an opinion, scientific fact now admitted to by even pro-abort factions).
C. Because they did not take into consideration that life begins at conception, they did not extend Constitutional rights to the unborn. Because we now know when life begins, those rights are inherent, and make the arguments for Roe V. Wade irrelevant, and the law itself unconstitutional. 

2. Laws regarding every aspect of abortion had up until 1973, been under state law. The Roe V. Wade decision did not change abortion law, per se. It changed privacy laws which allow a woman to procure an abortion with almost no restrictions. If Roe v. Wade were overturned, it would - unfortunately, not immediately make abortion illegal. The laws on the books of each state regarding abortion would then be in effect. Some states, such as Ohio, would immediately go back to illegal abortion, but others, such as California and Colorado,  who were among the very first to legalize abortion, it would remain legal. As a person who believes in States Rights, I do not think that the Supreme Court, or the Federal government should be able to make such sweeping laws, and impose them on states that clearly do not want them.

The second, and really to my mind, the most important part of any argument, is the moral aspect. To define any nation's law, one must consider natural law(here's a  very educational and enlightening run down of natural law and how it pertains to the Constitution). I prefer to think of it as God's law, but in this ever increasingly atheistic society, that doesn't get you real far in an argument. Anyway, Natural law dictates that man has God given rights. And among these are truly, the right to Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Now, I know, you are going to say that this is a tired old argument. But, it is so essential in the practice of obtaining and maintaining liberty as a nation, that it must be presented in any argument where a person's liberty is at stake. Of course, for this discussion, I am referring to not just the unborn baby, but the mother as well. God has given each of us these rights, and for any of us to be truly free, to truly have liberty, we must be able to live without the threat of violence, to ourselves, or each other. This is the essence of liberty. Without liberty, and with it, the right to life given to each individual, we are not observing natural law. We are flying in the face of God's law. Abortion is violence. To the baby, and to her mother.

Now, I really don't want this to get too weighty, because you'll get bored and leave. But, this is a weighty topic. I can get so emotional about it, because the idea of it is shocking to me. Truly, truly shocking. It never fails to stun me when someone says they are pro-choice. Especially someone who is truly pro-choice. When they think an abortion could EVER be the best answer. To me, this is shocking in the way that slavery is shocking to all of us now.
But, it wasn't always. When we read historical accounts of what happened in this country during the years that slavery was legal, we are shocked. We, as a nation, cannot fathom one person owning another. We read about children being sold away from their mother's arms, and cry for those children. We read about slaves being whipped for some imagined infraction, and we gasp. We see pictures of slaves on auction blocks and are astounded that this ever happened here. Why are we shocked? Why does this seem so unfathomable?

Because it goes against God. It goes against nature. That one man can own another. That one man can sell another away from his family. That he can beat him, work him, and call him "property". That he can have him killed if he does not work as he should. He can do whatever he wants with him, because it's legal - seems to foreign to our thinking, because we cannot picture ourselves in either place. Not as the owner, and certainly, not as the slave. A war was fought in this country over the right to own slaves. Slavery wasn't new, after all, it had gone on since the beginning of time.  Many thought they could not afford to run their farms and businesses without slaves. Many felt it was their right to do with these slaves as they wished - after all, they weren't really human - they were some form of sub-human. Since they weren't fully human, they were not entitled to the same rights as humans. But, they were. They were human, created in God's image. Entitled to the same rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as any other human being.

We look back now and are grateful to those who finally saw the truth, and fought for it. They knew that slavery had to be made illegal. Many were willing to fight and die to make it right. So many people worked to smuggle the slaves out of the South, to freedom.

The sarcastic me wants to know if you see any parallels here. The me that wants to make a point wants to know if you can see how abortion is slavery. It is the same issue. The unborn baby has no control over her existence, just as the slave did not. The unborn baby can be killed, if the mother can't afford the child, or doesn't want the child, or if it's a boy, or if it's a girl, or if she is unhealthy. After all, the baby isn't really a baby, she is sub-human. Except that she is fully human, from the moment of conception. And abortion isn't new, it has gone on since the beginning of time  - but that doesn't mean it should be legal in a civilized society. Just as slavery should never be legalized in a civilized society. Certainly not in America.

Every person, black or white, born or unborn, has the right to life. Has the right to liberty (an existence free of the fear of violence) to live in the pursuit of happiness. Someday in this country, and please Dear Lord, let it be soon, someday, people are going to wake up, and see what abortion has done to us as a nation. We don't treasure children. We see them as burdens. We have people in this country that think abortion doesn't go far enough. We have people who think it's okay to partially deliver a child, and then kill her. Or slit her throat on a table if she has the nerve to be born alive. When does it stop? Does it stop with abortion? Infanticide? Euthanasia? Anyone is is burdensome? That' not where we are headed, folks, that's where we ARE. It takes one, just one thing to create an avalanche. If abortion is okay, because of reasons x,y, and z, then those arguments are applied to the disabled, the elderly, the sick and infirm. Don't believe me? Read about Terry Schiavo, Baby Joseph, the huge number of babies with Down Syndrome being aborted.

A baby is a baby, a person, from the moment of conception, until natural death. This is scientifically proven, and it is also Natural Law. God's law.

I have argued from legal and moral standpoints. May I now offer the emotional one? As someone who has experienced a unplanned pregnancy, I honestly do know some of the fear and worry that comes from an crisis pregnancy. I also know, that from the moment I knew I was pregnant I would never, ever let anyone hurt my baby. It was instinctive. It was visceral. I know that most, if not every single woman who has been pregnant has felt the same way. It's part of who we are. God's law, nature's law, whatever - it's how we are made. To obtain an abortion, some part of a woman must be silenced, must be numb, to let it occur. She is lied to, told that her child is not really a baby - that makes it easier to bear. But she knows. And she carries the guilt and the horror with her forever after.

If I could ask for just one thing, it doesn't seem like such a big thing, since lives are at stake, both the mother's and her baby's. If it could be made a law that every woman seeking an abortion had to first see an ultrasound, preferably 3D, of her child, and then make the decision. Could she look at her child, see her face, and still say yes? I am sure there are some who could. Most could not. That instinct to protect, the one she has been trying so hard to ignore, would kick in. I think most mothers would change their minds. Most would have their babies. Is it so much to ask that the abortionist, who probably is using ultra sound to find his wee target, turn the screen first, and show the mother what she is getting rid of, what she is losing? I think not.

And one more thing - prolifers are often accused of talking the talk, but not walking the walk. That is - they want women to keep their babies, but don't want to help them. I want to just say, anyone who contacts me with ANYTHING regarding a crisis pregnancy - I will do anything I can to help her. I will help her get whatever she needs. We would keep a baby for someone who needs time, and let the mom come back for her child. We would get her in touch with whatever services she needed, Pregnancy Support Centers, maternity clothes, whatever. We would help, and I know so, so many others who would help - So if you know someone who needs help, I am here. I am willing. Please, forward this along to anyone who may need it. I will be here, if she needs me.