My Family!!

My Family!!

Friday, October 29, 2010

A Pleasant Surprise!

I had a great little surprise visit this afternoon. It was pretty uneventful day for the most part. I arrived home around 630am and wasn't quite read to go to sleep. I had a mission. Netflix had delivered a much awaited group of DVDs, and I was bound and determined to watch them. I officially had Disc 3 and 4 of Dexter in my possession, and I was beyond excited to watch BOTH of them. I lay awake on the couch for almost 4 hours finishing season four. It left me hanging! I sat in front of the TV for a good 5 minutes wide eyed, mouth dropped, stunned by the ending. I don't think I can wait for season five to come out on DVD. What am I going to do?

I finally crawled into bed with my two furbabies at 11am. Foster had a PT test this morning, so I knew I could expect him home a little earlier than usual. Little did I know that it would be 1pm! He came into the room, kissed me, got the puppies, and went to work on his homework.

I groggily rolled out of bed two hours later, and decided to start planning dinner. What was on the menu for this evening? White Chicken Chili! My mom's recipe that is perfect for a chilly fall evening. I purposfully tripled the recipe, expecting to eat left overs for a few day, not expecting company. However, I hear the pups barking frantically in the backyard. As I opened the door to yell at them and call them in with Foster and I, I recognized  a familiar face, Foster Miller.

"Foster Miller" is an old friend I haven't seen in WAY too long! He and I were friends way before I ever met Foster (yes, they have the same first name). My group of friends and family members were constantly trying to convince me to date Foster Miller, and on one drunk occasion, they ALMOST had me convinced. However, he has always been my friend, and more of a brother than a boyfriend. When I started dating Foster, Foster Miller and he hit it off. They even had a nickname for their friendship "The double Fs". I could not be happier. Who would have thought my boyfriend and my best guy friend would have no jealousy issues, and would actually enjoy being around each other!?!?!? Soon, their friendship grew, and they were spending more time with each other than Foster Miller and I were. Foster Miller is a former Marine, so Foster had a fellow military man to bond with and tell "old war stories" to.

Three years later, Foster and Foster Miller enjoy spending time watching football at the VFW, eating wings and playing video poker at the local BW3s. Today Foster Miller was doing some business in our neighborhood, and decided to grace us with his presence. Lucky him! I had the chicken chili simmering on the stove, and Foster had a few Yuenglings chilling in the fridge. We all enjoyed a bowl of chili, Foster and Miller enjoyed a bottle of beer while I sipped on some wine. We caught up, enjoyed each other's company, and ate some great food (in my opinion). If I ever get the time and energy to tell you how I helped him meet his first wife, it is a pretty interesting story. I am pretty good at playing matchmaker, but unfortunately, this match didn't last long.

Although it was going to be a pretty laid back night with Foster and I, the addition of our good friend was a welcome surprise. If all goes as planned tomorrow, he will be hanging out with us like old times for the OSU football game. Wait till you see the present I received from Foster tonight for the rest of the football season! I will be sure to post photos and an explanation of the thought behind the present.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Cameras, Articles, and Parties Oh My!!

As I mentioned in my last post, ALOT has been going on!!! I am glad to say I officially have my new camera, a Cannon EOS 50D. It is amazing, and I am getting a lesson this evening from our wedding photographer!! I have already captured some amazing pictures. this one was taken while driving 65 miles per hour, my regular camera would have produced a blur!

This one is a rare picture of Reagan. She looks so thoughtful, and I love the way the sun is hitting her!
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Rowdy is a HAM for the camera. He gets sooooooo excited every time I take it out. He is always ready for his closeup!

In other news, I contacted Military Spouse Magazine to see if they would be interested in the article that will be in the National Guard Magazine. One of the writers contacted me, we started talking, and instead she wants to do a feature on me in the March issue. It is a spouse profile focusing on family. When she read about my loss, she said it would be perfect. I don't know if I completely agree that it is perfect for the "family" issue, but I am honored that she wants to interview me, and will be a great opportunity to raise awareness of pregnancy and infant loss, and plug "Roses from Rosalynn and Project Sweet Pea". As far as my article, I guess I need to submit it to the main editor.

This past weekend, I had the opportunity to hang out with an old friend and fellow military wife. I had not seen her in 12 years since we graduated from high school. I am ashamed to say that, because she is such an amazing, inspirational, and talented woman. We reconnected through facebook and through our blogs. She writes a fun blog entitled "Scrapping the Story and Feeding the Soul" (click on it and pay her a visit).   It is a creativity filled blog about food, scrap booking, and raising her two beautiful children all while supporting her Air Force husband. I am sad we have lost so much time, but am glad we are reconnecting. Foster was reffing a rugby game near her husband's base, and she just happened to have a 31 purse party scheduled for that afternoon, perfect timing!  I jumped at the chance to hang out with her, and meet more military wives. I had never heard of 31 handbags. The premise of this organization is based off of Proverbs 31:17-18 "She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks. She sees that her trading is profitable, and her lamp does not go out at night." The company was started by a working mom who wanted to help provide for her family but not spend time away from them. Being a stay at home mom, Amy wanted to be able to help provide a little extra income for her family. She loves 31 Gifts because it is faith based, and Amy and her family are very strong in their faith.

When I got to her house, my nose was filled with the aromas of fresh baked goods and pumpkin lattes.

I watched and played with all of the goodies as she set them up on her mantel and table. Thirty-one has some beautiful baskets and liners, fun handbags, and even warm winter accesories like scarves and mittens. Of course I have a few pictures, but you can check out the whole catalog on Amy's Thirty-one Gifts page here or here.  She has been kind enough to offer a proceeds of her profit from a party to go towards my Roses from Rosalyn and Projects Sweet Peas. I will definitely take her up on the offer as soon as school slows down a bit, so I will be sure to let you all know when I will be hosting a party and hopefully makeing some amazing dishes like Amy did for her last party.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Strike Four....Your OUT!!!!!

I have been having so many interesting things in my life happen, that I honestly don't know what to choose to post about today. I hope I have more time this week to catch you all up on everything!

Foster and I have been spending some much need time together this weekend. We have been in the same vicinity of each other for the last three days, and it has been great.

I started my weekend out with my very first counseling session. I THOUGHT it would be a good kickoff to the weekend, because I figured it would put me in a good mood and clear my head. Boy was I wrong!! I walked in to a 60+ year old woman. She seemed a little stern, and not very comforting like you would imagine a grandmother-aged woman to be. As I sat down, she started asking me the typical questions, "What brought you in? Why now 6 months later?, etc" It seemed a little strained. For one, I did not feel like we could really connect, because we were decades apart in age, and there was really nothing we would find in common. Also, she comes from a generation that treated baby loss a whole different way. Most of the 50+ women I know who have lost a child, never got to hold, see or even know what gender their baby was.

I mentioned to her that I was having anxieties and thoughts that I knew were not normal. I had very dark thoughts when the subject of my deployment came up, I can't sleep when my husband is gone, and I have feelings of urgency to get pregnant for multiple reasons. One of these reasons is my mom. I know she does not worry about her own health, but I constantly do. She has not seen a doctor since my sister was born 25 years ago! She smokes and is over weight. She knows this, is aware of it, but still does not want to go to a doctor for them to just tell her she needs to quit smoking and lose weight. Now, to give her credit, she is a very hard worker, and is always active. She works all over the farm without stopping. She constantly reminds Bug and I that she could probably out do us any day of the week. This is very true, but I still fear for her, and along with this fear is the want to give her another grandchild before something bad happens.

First strike against this counselor is in the first fifteen minutes of our meeting she suggested medication. I immediately told her NO. Not only do I NOT want to be a zombie, but I am also currently trying to get pregnant, and I do not want it to affect my fertility or the next baby. Most anti-anxiety medication are dangerous to a fetus. Plus, I am not disabled by my anxiety therefore no medications are required.

I gave her an example of what makes me nervous. I get a little social anxiety when I am in large groups of people who do not know what has happened. Inevitably, when you are 29 and married, one of the first questions is "Do you have any children?" Well, we all know the answer to this is, "Yes, but she lives in heaven." However, if I follow up the question with this answer to a complete stranger, there is the uncomfortable silence, the pity filled facial expression, and the "I am so sorry," that follows. I always feel as if I am the one consoling them by the end of the conversation. This was her response:

"Well, you should answer 'No', because you are not a mother."

EXCUSE ME?!!!???!! Even my husband said he knows better than to tell a baby loss mother that they are not a mother. "Yes, I am a mother. I birthed her, held her, and still love her with every being of my soul!" I exclaimed.

"Technically you are not though, because you do not parent her here on earth."

"Would you tell a mother who lost their only child at 5 years old that they are not a mother?" I asked.

"No, but she was a mother."

"So was I. I agree that I am not a parent, because being a parent would mean I would have to have a child to 'parent', but I am still a mother!" I could not believe what was coming out of her mouth. I wanted to smack her.

Obviously strike two was this lovely exchange of words.

Strike three was when she disregarded anything I had to say about my faith. I mentioned my thoughts on my "feelings" prior to the loss and how I thought it might have been God's way of emotionally preparing me. She brushed it off and said that she believed it was just woman's intuition. I tried to tell her multiple times that faith is what has kept me strong so far, and she brushed it off as if I was using faith as a crutch. I wanted to scratch her eyes out by this point.

Strike four is when she was putting words in my mouth. I expressed my anger towards the Nat. Guard for not filing my paper work when it should have been done.  If it had been taken care of, I would not be stressing over the upcoming deployment, because I would not be in the Army anymore, and would not be going on the deployment. She turned all of my words around and said that she felt that I was angry at the Nat. Guard because I blamed them for my loss. Is that what I said? I don't think so! Now I was envisioning beating her head in with a stick.

As if this was not enough, she asked, "Since you won't let me put you on drugs, how do you expect to deal with these problems?" This was the third suggestion at medication, and I was getting a little annoyed.

"Ummmm.....isn't that why I am coming to you? Aren't you supposed to help me talk through them, and come up with other ways to deal with my issues?"

"I guess," she replied, "But do you think talking to me is really going to help?"

Well, I guess not.

I came out of that appointment fuming. I called Foster and unleashed, and then immediately called Military Onesource and requested a change in provider. They listened to my complaints, and quickly got me an appointment with another psychologist. Unfortunately, this one lives 30 minutes away, but hopefully she will be a little more compassionate.

Needless to say, my first experience with counseling has not been a good one, but I still have hope.

For you BLMs, how many counselors did you have to go through until you found a right match?

Has anyone else had such a bad experience with counseling?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

6 Long but Short Months....

< I awoke this morning overwhelmingly sad. I have been so busy with work and school, I have gotten very little sleep, and realized that I wouldn't get the chance to visit my daughter's grave on her 6 month angelversary. I was terrified that people would forget. I should have known better. I got a call from my sister today while I was at work that not only made me cry tears of sadness, but also of joy. She was the loving aunt, and went out to Rosalynn's grave site and spent some time with her and my Granny. My heart swelled, because I am so blessed to have such an amazing sister. Bug has the most gentle soul, and she truly loves her family, including Rosalynn. She took a beautiful red balloon out and released it so Rosie could catch it. She said the rosary with Granny and Rosie, and then read Rosie a beautiful book. As she put it "We had a little party in the cemetery." She did what I couldn't do for her niece today. div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;">

I was so relieved. A comfort came over me upon getting the news that someone who loved her so deeply visited her today. Kate did mention that it was a little depressing, because her marker is not yet placed. There is only a small piece of wood where her headstone will soon be.

A friend of mine from Missing Olivia, a fellow BLM and Army wife, sent me some pictures from her cross country trip. These were taken at Lake Tahoe, and although she took them a few weeks ago, she sent them to me today, and I am thankful that she did. For one, they are beautiful. She has a camera similar to my new one, and now I NEED to learn how to use it, because I want to take pictures like this. Second, I needed them today. I know it was probably not intentional to send them today, the 20th, the six month marker, but sometimes God has funny ways of working, and her timing couldn't have been more prefect.
Six months, wow! At times it feels like a lifetime ago, but then again, it feel like it just happened yesterday. The pain is sometimes too raw, especially if I am tired or stressed. Time is flying by way too fast, and yet the world came to a screeching halt for me 6 months ago today. 


Thank you all for your love and support. The messages on facebook, the calls and texts. I appreciate them more than you know. It made my fear from this morning dissipate. The people that matter have not forgotten, and hopefully never will.

I also have one problem I want a little advice on. Foster told me today that he told one of his guys that we would come over on Sunday and visit their new baby girl. Don't get me wrong, I am very happy for them, but I have a problem with this. First of all, it took me almost 2 months to visit my friend Mrs. Davey (from this post) and her new daughter. I have known her for close to six years, and love her to pieces. Also, the Eastwood's (also from the same post) baby I saw when they were still in the hospital because she knows the feeling of loss and had a very complicated pregnancy. I have known her since before high school, and was rooting her and Baby Eastwood along for 9 long months. There is a reason it was easy to visit them. Not only are they amazing friends, but they let me talk about Rosalynn, and ask questions like "How are you REALLY doing?" and REALLY want to know the answers. I am not close to this couple on Sunday. I don't want to see their baby, I don't want to hold their baby, I don't want to fake that everything is ok. I don't want to make them feel uncomfortable if we start talking about pregnancy pains and adventures like all ex-pregnant women do. I do not know how comfortable they will be with me in their homes. I just don't want to go. Foster insists that I do. He seems to think that it will be "good" for me, and does not see my side of the issue. I understand he wants to support one of his guys, and I will gladly cook some food for them, but please, please, please do not make me go with you. I partially wonder if he wants me to go because he wants my support as well. He may need me to be there for him so he will be strong. What do you think?

You Have Now Entered the Twilight Zone

This past Sunday I was returning home from a meeting with my American Sign Language class partner. I  was driving through downtown, one of the largest cities in my state, and noticed something very strange. There were absolutely no cars. I was heading East bound, and there were four cars heading the same way, however, there were none heading West bound towards down town. Not a single one! It was Sunday, and I know traffic is usually slower, but this was very eerie. I became all to aware of my surroundings, and I started to wonder if there had been some evacuation I was unaware of.

I decided to call Foster, because if anyone would have first knowledge of an imminent attack on downtown, it would be him since his job entails responding to such incidences. He would not answer his phone. I felt like I was in an episode of the Twilight Zone. As I got further away from downtown, I noticed police stationed at every exit of the highway, as if they knew something I didn't and I was about to be caught in the middle of a catastrophe.

Then I saw it, a group of cars heading my way, in the lead was a black SUV with flashing blue lights. All the sudden it dawned on me. The world was not coming to an end,  my boss was visiting. Following the SUV were three stretch limos with the American flag on the hoods. That's right, the BIG boss was in town. Obama had once again shut down the ENTIRE city upon his arrival.

Most people would think this was pretty cool, but with this being his fourth visit in a matter of six months, I was a little annoyed. Has the President ever come to your town? If so, you know what happens. All air traffic is halted, every street on the route to his destination is shut down, and every policeman in town is providing live road blocks. If you have anywhere you have to be, good luck! Your flights are delayed, your commute is interrupted, and it is prime time for crime! The last two times he has visited, I have been stuck in stopped traffic for almost two hours. This time I miraculously avoided the traffic, heck, I had the whole side of the highway to myself, but the thousands of cars that were backed up for miles off of the highway were not as lucky. Heaven forbid I had to be at work or class, I would have been up a creek without a paddle. I would have been furious, and if Obama had any chance of getting my vote in 2012, he would have lost it by the time traffic got moving again.

I am completely for protecting our Commander in Chief, but shutting down a whole city to do so seems a little extreme. I am, however, impressed by his reason for this visit. My university's Democratic club wrote him a letter requesting his presence at their annual rally, and he accepted! Never in a million years did they think he would, but he did, and that is pretty admirable in my eyes. I know it is probably part of his campaign, because it is no secret that our state always seems to be the deciding state in the elections, but I would like to think he did it out of the goodness of his heart, and to support his young democrats. One can always hope.

Sunday, October 17, 2010


I am stoked. Once again it is that time of year, Marathon time. No, I don't run it, but Foster does. This year, he has decided to participate on the National Guard team in the half-marathon. He has done 3 full marathons and quite a few half's. I love to watch him run, and especially in the cute shorts that the Nat. Guard issued for this race!

What I am most excited about is that I recieved my new camera!!!!! And I get to use it for the first time this morning. Well, not the FIRST time because I played around with it for about 2 hours yesterday, but that is beside the point. It is AMAZING! The sports mode takes multiple pictures in a very short amount of time, capturing every movement of the object. I was finally able to get some good pictures of my pup Reagan. She is so camera shy, and if she knows she is being photographed, she hides. I can be really really sneaky with this new camera. It zooms in so far that I can be in the next room and get a close up of her and she never sees it coming.

Unfortunately, the mega pixels are so high on this camera, I am afraid I am going to have to buy an external hard drive for my computer, or else I will crash it with 5 pictures.
Stay tuned for pictures of today's events. I am looking forward to the people watching, the action shots, and maybe even a few cool shots of downtown. I have a feeling that I will have a new obsession. To top it all off, our wedding photographer (the one who took the picture at the top of my blog) has offered free lessons to learn all the bells and whistles of my new gadget.

This is officially my Birthday, Christmas, and Anniversary gift, but it is TOTALLY worth it! I love my husband!!!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Welcome, and Enjoy

So I noticed I have quite a few new followers. In an attempt to make it easy on all of you, I will not make you go back and read 5 months worth of posts, and I will recap my life in a few short paragraphs to get you all caught up.

I am a 28, okay, 29 year old in 1 month. I am married to the most amazing man on the planet. He is my best friend, my confidant, and my life preserver when I feel like I am drowning. He is the opposite of me in so many ways, but the same in all that matters. He is an officer in the Army, and loves his country and his job ALMOST as much as he loves me, but not quite. We were married on 12/12/2009. I love the date, because now he has no excuse to forget it. Okay, I am the flighty one, so I guess this will help ME to remember it. Although he has a pretty stoic exterior, he has one of the biggest hearts, and lets me see it every day.

We have been through one year long deployment while we were dating. While he was in the sandbox, I did what every sane Army girlfriend does, I joined. I wear my own combat boots as a medic in the Army National Guard. This does cause for some interesting situations in our household, but I believe that it has helped me better understand Foster.

April 20th 2010 is a pivotal point in my life. It is the reason I started blogging, and is my motivation for what I do day to day. This is the day that we lost our beautiful daughter, Rosalynn. We were 34w4d into our pregnancy and her heart stopped due to a placental infarct (google it if you would like info on it). We were devastated. I was sent home with an empty womb, an empty nursery, and empty arms. She was 5lb 13oz bundle of beauty. She had my hair, her fathers nose and chin, my hands, and my lips. She was perfect, and now she lives with Jesus. I anxiously await the day that I get to meet her for the first time. If you would like to read her whole story, click on the link on the right hand side of my page.

Although my life has been filled with ups and downs, I try to maintain a positive attitude. I am a child of God, and turn to him every day for guidance and strength. I may slip like any other human, but with the assistance of my friends and family, I pick myself up, brush myself off, and persevere.

I try to entertain in my posts, because my life can be VERY exciting. I am a tech in an ER, a student at one of the largest universities in the country, and have the funniest two puppies you will ever meet. My family is boisterous and animated, and my friends are goofy.

I warn you, some of my posts can be dark and sad, because I do have my moments, but I am always honest. I do not hold anything back! Welcome, and I hope you enjoy the ride as we are now trying to conceive our second child, and I start training for an upcoming deployment scheduled for Summer of 2011.

P.S. If you are a follower, and if I am not following your blog, please message me and I will be more than happy to follow you, I love new blog friends!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Prayers Needed Everywhere

I did it, I finally called a counselor. After my reaction to the upcoming deployment, and after I had a meltdown at 1AM on Monday night, I decided I needed to call a counselor. I HATE to admit it. I HATE to say that I can't handle this grief, however the counseling is on the Army's dime, so why they heck not take advantage of it. If it helps, great! If it doesn't, I didn't waste anything other than an hour of my time a week.

It's weird, I was explaining to Foster that I almost feel worse now than I did 3-4 months ago. I have been talking to a lot of my fellow BLMs, and the one who lost their angels around the same time I did are having the same feelings. When I discussed this during my initial phone consultation this afternoon, the comforting voice on the other end told me this was completely normal. So many people expect grief to be like a sloping line, gradually getting better with time. In actuality, it is more like a spiral that slowly gets bigger. You pass the start point from time to time and the grief pops up almost as hard as it did at the beginning, however, as the spiral gets further out, the moments get further and further apart, and less and less crippling when they do pop up. She also explained that the most common time for this phenomenon happening is approximately 5-6 months out from the loss. I am glad this is part of the normal grief process.

Back to Monday night. I was finishing up my homework and started watching TV just around midnight. I felt alone all of the sudden. Foster was gone on an training mission, and the house was quiet. That is when it hit me that it shouldn't be like this. I should have a little girl to keep me company. I lost it. I was sobbing and had no distractions other than two very concerned puppies. They both laid their chins on my leg and lovingly looked at me with concern in their eyes. I attempted to call my sister, but I was pretty sure she was working. I was right. I did the only thing I could figure to do, I put a message on facebook in hopes that someone would still be awake: "Having a bad night and can't sleep". I wanted a distraction. I wanted someone to talk to get my mind off things or let me just cry. I know there have been many people tell me I can call them at any time, but 1 AM is pushing it!

Lo and behold I received a message from an old friend. She used to work with me in the ER until her husband joined the military, and now they are in Kansas. She wasn't sleeping either. She was in a hospital room, alone, as if in a prison cell. She is currently in isolation from receiving an oral radiation treatment for treating thyroid cancer. She can't be around her kids or husband for 8 days because she will still be radioactive. She called me after a few messages on facebook, and we proceeded to have a pity party for ourselves. By the end we were laughing and we both felt better. It was a very healing conversation, and just what I needed to snap me out of my funk.
I went up to bed and quickly fell asleep.

Bright and early I got a call from my sister. She had seen the missed call and was concerned since it was such a late call. When I answered I was not going to tell her about my night, but she could tell there had been something wrong, so she pushed until I finally caved. "I had a bad night," I replied.

"I did too," Bug said.

"Why?" I asked.

"Do you remember the pregnant girl I work with I told you about?"

Of course I did. I remember every person who is pregnant, because there is that slight jealousy that comes with it. I want to be in their shoes, "Yes," I started to get a little nervous, because her voice sounded sad.

"She lost her baby girl. She was going to be induced on Monday, noticed there was a decrease in movement on Friday, went in to be checked and there was no heartbeat."

My heart stopped. I was heartbroken. Another angel taken too soon, and my poor sister was close to this woman too. Then I started getting more upset, because unfortunately the policy is not changed at our work yet, and will not be changed until July. This is another woman that will only get 2 weeks off to deal with her grief, and I felt like I failed, because the point of me changing the policy was to help women like her. I was hoping there would never be another in our system, but there is, and so soon after me. I hope that she has some sick leave and vacation saved up that she will be able to take a little extra time if she feels she needs it. I am devastated for her. She is in for a rough road and I wish there was a way I could take away her pain. Right now, however, I need to focus on my healing, and hope that my first session goes well next week. Wish me luck, please please pray for my friend that her cancer reacts to this treatment, and of course keep my sister's friend in your thoughts and prayers.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Roses From Rosalynn

I am following a blog entitled "The Lady's Blogger Society". Today they had a post about unrealistic goals to be the perfect blogger. One of them happens to be to post at least 3 times a week. WOW! I have failed miserably in the last few weeks at that one!! Trust me, it is not because I am short on things to write about, or that I have not had interesting things going on in my life; it is mostly because I have become so bogged down with homework, work, and projects, that I have not had the time recently. Also, because I have been sick, and unfortunately, when I am sick, I don't feel as creative. In fact, all I want to do is sleep! I slept 12 hours Friday night. I got up around half-time of the OSU game, and napped on and off on the couch until Foster came home from drinking beer @ the VFW with his buddies. I was SUPPOSED to work, but my inability to breath, mixed with the nastiness that was leaking out of every orifice of my body, caused me to call off. Would you feel comfortable as an ER patient coming in and seeing one of the staff members sick as a dog, plus the multiple trips to the bathroom every hour have been exhausting!!!

I decided that not only do I need to be the soldier from now on, but I need to be sick more often! Foster is a complete sweetheart when I am not feeling well. Once again, he had most of the laundry done and the kitchen clean two mornings in a row! I am putting him in for the "Housewife of the Year" award!

My Birthday is quickly approaching, along with our wedding anniversary, and Christmas. I have been dropping hints for months that I want a REAL camera. The type of camera I can add lenses to, take a class through OSU and capture beautiful pictures. Well, God love my hubby, he has purchased me one. I BELIEVE it is a Cannon. I have not received it yet, although, I think he is going to give it to me before my birthday because he knows how badly I want to capture the beautiful colors of the trees as they change colors this fall. He said that our wedding photographer (the one who took the AMAZING photo at the top of my blog page) would give me free lessons if Foster purchased a Cannon for me, so that is what makes me think it is a Cannon. Don't you worry, as soon as I get it, you will know, and I guarantee I will be speing hours the first day playing with it taking photos.
As if I don't have enough going on, I have decided to get in touch with "Project Sweet Pea". It is an organization that makes bags for NICU babies and their families and Baby Loss Families. Each bag will contain a combination the following determined by the situation:
~disposable camera
~hand and foot print molds
~journal and pen
~hat and booties
~outfit (a little more dressy for the Stillborn in case they want to bury them in it)
~small bottle of shampoo and lotion for the baby's first (and sometimes only) bath
~a pair of tiny scissors and a little bag for mom and dad to get a lock of hair
~a teddy bear for mom to cuddle with, and a small one for baby
~baby brush and comb
~baby books for mom and dad to read to baby in the NICU
~gas card for mom and dad to get back and forth
~picture frames
~votive candle and holder
~holiday themed items to decorate isolettes in the NICU

I looked on their web page, and they do not have a chapter of Project Sweet Pea in Ohio as of yet, so I will be starting it up. It will be entitled "Roses from Rosalynn".

Roses have a very special meaning to me. They give me hope. I was given a rose bush by Foster's side of the family on the day of her funeral. Every time it blooms it puts a smile on my face and is almost like a promise for the future. I want to pass that same hope onto other families. I want them to know that no matter how grim the situation is, there is still hope, and never to give it up.

If anyone knows where I can get any of these items in bulk, let me know. I may be pleasantly surprised by some back pay from the Army, and I would like to invest it into my little project. I want to get some bags embroidered or screen printed with "Roses from Rosalynn" and a pretty pink Rose on them. As I get the project going, I will create a web page with all the info, and ways that people can get involved if they want. I am really excited. I have been chomping at the bit to get something going, and I feel like I have control over this project and can get it going pretty quickly! I am going to START the project in Central Ohio NICUs, however, would like to eventually expand it through all of Ohio.

Don't worry, I am still going to be part of BIHAA, but things seem to be moving too slow for me right now, and I need something extra since my momentum is still through the roof, and I don't like the feeling of sitting around WAITING for things to happen, so I make them happen myself.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

With One Voice

I decided to name my Sunday Blog "With One Voice". Foster was not thrilled by the name until I explained it to him. The reasoning behind it is I only have one voice. I can talk all day long about my feelings, God, and the lessons I learn through my experience, but with a little bit of prayer, maybe one of you many followers will take the lessons I have learned and apply them to your lives. In other words, I have made a difference with one voice!

Today I had so much to focus on, I had to choose just one topic. Foster and I decided to attend an after mass monthly lecture. Once a month our church will be holding a special lecture series called "Refreshing Catholicism". We were a little afraid that it would be a version of RCIA for current Catholics, but it was not at all! In fact, we actually got a lot out of it.

This week's discussion was "Who is God". It was a reflection of who God is portrayed as in the bible, and who he is in our lives. It really got me thinking who God has become to me. Going through RCIA with Foster really helped me renew and become closer to my religion, however, the loss of my daughter has renewed my faith and strengthened my relationship with God.

Why is it so many people turn away from God when bad things happen? Unfortunately, we are such an entitled society. We feel like the things that go good in our lives we owe to our own hard work, or because we "deserve them", and many people forget to give thanks. However, too often, when things don't go as planned, or our prayers go unanswered, we blame God and ask questions like "Why me?" or "What did I do so wrong to deserve this?"

Honestly, ask yourself when was the last time you thanked God for something good that happened? Did you thank him the last time you got a promotion at work, or did you attribute it to your talents and hard work? Did you thank him the last healthy check up you had at the doctor's office or did you attribute it to your healthy eating and work out regiment? Now think to the last time something horrible happened in your life; for instance, the last loved one who died. You were no doubt distraught. Did you ask God why? Maybe you even got a little mad at Him because you didn't understand why He didn't answer your prayers when you begged for Him not to take your loved one's life. Too often it seems that we blame the bad on Him.

Newsflash, death is a part of living. Every one of us is going to die at some point. Unfortunately, some die earlier than others. Life is NOT fair, and bad things happen to good people. In all truth, I wouldn't have it any other way. If life was all peaches and cream, it would be no fun! If my heart had never been broken, I would not be aware of how amazing my husband is and how blessed I am to be truly loved for who I am. If I had never failed at something in life, I would not know how amazing it feels to accomplish something I have worked hard at. Without the trials in life, the triumphs would not be as sweet.

How does this explain who God is? To me, God is like my parent. Yes, I know, we call Him the "Father", but I mean more of a personal relationship. He is more like a "Daddy". He loves each and every one of us. We are His children, and just like our parents here on earth, He celebrates in our achievements and swells with pride, but He also grieves in our tribulations right along with us. I honestly believe that He does not like to see us suffer. He does not like to see us in despair. Remember, He is the one who started The Garden of Eden, which was paradise where no one hurt or felt pain. Unfortunately, it was too much of a good thing and human nature took over, and He now gives us the free will to live as we want to.

On that note, as a Dad, he hates to see how badly we treat each other. I have to say that I used to wonder why people who are addicted to crack and beat their children are blessed to have little ones, but Foster and I had our first born taken from us. It is not my place to judge. God loves the crack heads, the thieves, and the murderers as much as he loves the priests and nuns and the best of the best. Just because our children mess up, does not make us love them any less. We have hope that they will find the right road and make the right choices, and it is never too late. God feels this way about all of us. I admit that I have made some really bad decisions in my life, but I am sure he just rolled his eyes at my mistake, forgave me, and hoped that I would learn and take the right path the next time. I know this is what my mom does every night, and I feel this is how God is.

I wish I could say something that would make the pain of loss and failure easier, but there is nothing. A wise friend of mine told me that it is in those darkest times that we find God and are able to do the best healing.

I just hope that in the end, I have done whatever it is "Dad" wanted me to do through this experience and learned whatever "lesson" I am supposed to walk away with.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

It is Approaching...and Other Random Thoughts

So, I officially wish there was a way that I could get an application that filters pregnancy and baby announcements. I just saw that a girl I know who had her baby 1 month before I lost Rosalynn is due with baby # 2 sometime in May. Am I happy for them OF COURSE, but it is like another reminder of what I don't have and do not have on the way. I was hoping I would be pregnant with my rainbow before any of my friends who were pregnant with me were pregnant with their next child. Oh well, life goes on and the world continues to go around regardless of what has gone on in my life. I can't expect everyone to put their lives on hold until I get pregnant again. All I can do is pray that God will bless us too.

On a happier note, October 15th is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day. I have been contacting local radio stations to inform them and ask them to please mention it at some point in the day. I was contacted by the local television news lady who wants to talk to me. Apparently she was already working on a story for that day. I missed her call when I was in class, so I was a little disappointed, I emailed her when I got home, so hopefully she contacts me again.

Kam and I are rolling with the silent auction for Back in His Arms Again. There is a board meeting this Thursday that I will not be able to attend thanks to work, but the ideas of the auction will be presented, and hopefully not turned down. I will keep updating about the organization. However, if anyone is interested in donating to BIHAA, click here and make sure to select Back in His Arms Again in the pull down bar. The money will go directly to the ministry. IT will help educate hospitals, financially help families of loss, and any penny WILL make a difference. You will receive a thank you card and tax write off papers. I will keep a button on the side of my blog for anyone interested donating in the future.

I decided after this weekend that I think I should be the full time soldier, and Foster should be the housewife. He had dinner on the table both evenings, and when I got back from drill on Sunday, he had the house clean!!! That is right, the floors were swept, the rugs vacuumed, the sink was clean and dishes put away. I thought I walked into the wrong house! I could not be any happier. My love cup was definitely full! I consider myself blessed to have such an amazing husband!

I also want everyone to know I have a solution for our national security. We need to hire the lady at the VFW. Foster and I stopped by to find out the price for renting the hall for the silent auction. We got to the door, and you have to be buzzed in. There is a key card access but this must be a new feature, because Foster and I have not been there in months. We could here the lady bartender saying "I don't know who they are. Should I let them in?"

Seriously!??! Foster was holding up his membership card WITH that post's # on it, and they were still wondering if we "belonged". After Foster pointed out that he was a paying member, and that he had not been there for a few months, she finally let us in. I was annoyed but slightly impressed by their security measures. You would think they were screening for terrorists. This could be the solution to our security problems!! She should be head of national security.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Sunday's Sermon

I know it has been way too long since i have posted what I learned from the Sunday service, but it is because I have not gotten the chance to go to church! I have felt like something was missing, because I have missed mass for 3 weekends in a row. THe first was because we were on a strict deadline back from North Carolina on Sunday, and HAD to be back in town to drop off the rental by 5pm. The following weekend I had drill for the National Guard, and unfortunately we were not released in time for me to make either evening masses. Then I was in Chicago with the girls. We were going to go to the evening mass when we returned on Sunday, but then we got caught in traffic for 2.5 hours on the way home so we didn't make it in time (that is a story I have yet to finish telling you guys!). So, come Hell or high water, I was bound and determined to make it this week. Thank the Lord, because our command released us early on Saturday so FOster and I were able to attend evening mass together.

I really needed this week's message. Obviously Foster and I are still trying to conceive. This was the third month of failure. I know this does not seem very long to people who have been trying to conceive for years, but as a Baby Loss Mom, there is an urgency to fill a void. Notice how I said "fill a void", and not "replace my baby". The"empty arm syndrome", not even close to the "empty nest syndrome" or the "restless leg syndrome", is what I am trying to ease the pain of. I know no other baby will take the place of Rosie, but I yearn for the day that my arms will hold a child.

"Then the Lord answered me and said: Write down the vision clearly on tablets, so that one can read it readily. For the vision still has its time, presses on to fulfillment, and will not disappoint; If it delays, wait for it, it will surely come, it will not be late." Habakkuk 2: 2-3

My feeling of urgency is useless. I must hold faith that God has his plans for me and Foster. We have no control over the timing that God has already planned for us, and we just have to continue to pray and try. It will happen in His time. I have to admit, every month that my monthly shows, it becomes harder and harder to hold to that faith. "Lord Increase our faith" (Luke 17:5) I find myself asking for this every month. I have to have faith that He knows what he is doing, and hope that the visions of being a mother come to fruition in due time.

This message at mass was just what I needed this week. I am sooooooo glad that Foster and I were able to make it to church together this week.

P.S. I LOVE my new projects from moms of Rosie's name....scroll down and check them out on the right hand side. And I also love the fact i have music to my blog now! all of the songs have to do with angels, roses, or have a special place in my heart. I figured it was time since my theme is "dancing through the garden of life". Enjoy!!!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

An Unexpectedly Wonderful Date Night

Foster wanted me to preface my story by telling you that he is currently cooking dinner AND doing the dishes while I enjoy a fragrant glass of wine and write all of my faithful friends and followers. Today the roles are reversed. I went off to work in uniform, and I come home to my husband in an apron. Well, maybe not an apron, but that would be cute!

Last night was great. I was on my way home from Weight Watchers on cloud nine. I once again was the biggest loser for the week with a week weight loss of 3.2 pounds. That brings my total weight loss to 8.8 lbs. My first text was to Mrs. Prince, because she has been suffering through the baby weight loss struggle with me, and because she has had her experience with WW. My second call was to Foster. I was ecstatic to let him know I had lost more weight even though I indulged a little bit in Chicago. While I was on the phone with him he informed me that he was already home. He had attended the few meetings he had to for the day, and since his entire team was on leave for the day, he was able to come home around lunch. I was a little depressed, because I had been so busy this week that Foster and I had spent very little time together, so this little surprise is just what I needed.

We decided we would have date night. We were the proud owners of two free tickets to AMC movies, so we were going to watch the movie "What If" and head to California Pizza Kitchen for dinner.

Those plans immediately changed when we walked into the mall, and Foster saw in big black letters "Christopher Titus" across the marquee at the Funny Bone. Titus is one of his favorite comedians. We will listen to him for hours on long car rides, and he is one of the only comedians I actually feel completely comfortable listening to in front of my mother. He is smart, blunt, and CLEAN. Yes folks, he is one of few comedians who doesn't use the "F" word in every sentence because they think it adds to their routine. I think he used profanity twice in his skit, and it was strategically placed to the point where it needed to be said.

I cautioned Foster when the light bulb went on over his head, that he was familiar with all of Titus' routines, and I asked if he thought the $50 for two tickets would be worth it. He hesitated, but when the ticket guy told us we could have front row seats if we ate dinner prior to the performance, Foster was sold.

After meandering around the mall for about an hour, we took our seats in the front row of the theater and ordered our food. I stayed true to WW, and he indulged. I did sneak a few bites of chocolate cake from him, but don't worry, I counted the points. We got a "private show" from Titus when he came out to do his sound check. It was before all the lights came on, before he was in the perfect outfit, and he not surprisingly, he was really personable. He reassured us that he would be practicing with old material, and everything that night would be brand new. At that moment, Foster and I knew we had made the right choice.

The show was AMAZING. I don't think I have ever laughed so hard at a live show. He stayed true to form, and did not disappoint with his new material. When it comes out, I HIGHLY recommend listening to it. He has some really good political stances, along with advice about how we should go back to the old ways when the entire "village" raised the children. He was political without taking one side or another. He was funny without being crude, and he was wearing a great pair of jeans that accentuated his cute butt. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention our seats were on the side of the stage, front row, so we got to watch his rear end for most of the show. I am sure Foster would have preferred a more straight-on seat, but I was content. I am sure Foster forgot about the rear view seats after he and I got our picture taken with Titus, and Foster was able to shake hands and chat with Titus. He informed us that we can be expecting to see him on the FOX network shortly. That is right, he will have a new show. I believe he said next fall and based off of his CD "Love is Evol" (yes,Evol...not Evil...also another HIGHLY recommended CD!!!).

We were planning on having a nice, cheap date, but got sooooooo much more. Needless to say, we spent quite a bit more than we were expecting to last night, but it was worth every penny! Thank you Titus for your part in an amazing date night.

I better go, Foster called me for dinner!

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