Friday, November 21, 2008

What God Did

I just did something I never thought I’d get a chance to do. I just finished decorating a birthday cake for my daughter. At the beginning of this year, if you had told me that in November I’d be celebrating the first month of my baby’s life, I would have laughed in your face much like Sara did when the angel told Abraham she’s have a son. After 10 years of marriage, my husband and I had all but given up on the idea of having our own children. In fact, we were starting the adoption process when we found out we were pregnant. As we learned, God has a sense of humour (you can read more about this in my previous posts “The Unexpected Day” Part 1 and 2).

However that’s not all we’ve learned throughout the course of this year. As the reality of our pregnancy sunk in, a new reality began taking shape. At 35 years of age, with high blood pressure and a few other health concerns, we were facing a high risk pregnancy. My life changed overnight, and for the next nine months we prayed our way through regular blood pressure checks, glucose monitoring, countless ultrasounds, blood tests, non-stress tests and more. The risks were high, for me and the baby, and even on the day she was born we weren’t sure if either of us were going to make it. Our baby girl is a living, breathing miracle. A testimony of God’s faithfulness, and proof of the power of prayer.

From the moment we found out we were pregnant, we started to pray and had others join us in prayer. Right from the start the odds were stacked up against us. I was told to expect that I’d develop gestational diabetes. I was ordered to take it easy and put on medication to help with my blood pressure, all the while being told the scary truth of what high blood pressure could mean in pregnancy. My doctor even all but guaranteed that, if I made it through, the baby would be born by caesarean section. Being faced with such sobering news was overwhelming, and I remember going home after that first week of doctor’s visits in tears. Scared, completely overwhelmed and still in shock at what was happening, I had no other alternative than to turn to the Lord and trust that He knew what He was doing!

The journey for the next nine months was full of anxious doctor’s visits, and praise report after praise report as we sat back and watched God do what He does best. Prayers were said for us from every corn of the world, and as we journeyed through the pregnancy we saw evidence of the power of those prayers along the way. Not one of the doctor’s predictions came true, and in fact I ended the pregnancy healthier than when I started!

But the power of prayer was most evident to us at the end when our daughter was born. After waiting for two days to be induced into labour, I was finally admitted and induced on Monday, October 20th. We were ecstatic and expected that our baby would be born later that night or early the next morning. However, what started as excitement quickly turned to anxiety as the hours stretched on and on with little progress. By Tuesday night, when the second induction was forced on me (along with an epidural that I had hoped to avoid), I was exhausted and the doctor started to express concern. Threats of a c-section loomed before us once again, and we started to pray harder.

In the wee hours of Wednesday morning, after 38 hours of labour I was finally told I could start pushing. Not knowing where I’d find the energy, my husband started to pray (as did his mother, who was awakened around that time with an urge to pray for me). Two hours later, despite the doctor’s certainty that he’d have to intervene at some point, and a scary moment when the baby’s head got “stuck” and she started showing signs of being in distress, God saw fit to give me a sudden burst of energy and I pushed with strengthen no one thought I had to bring our daughter into the world. Every person in the room cheered as the baby made her entrance. “I didn’t think you would do it,” the doctor said to me. “God did” is all I could say.

Ten months later I sit here, in the comfort and warmth of our little townhouse, and listen to the stirring of my infant daughter. We named her Abigail, which means “the father’s joy,” and we have started a new prayer for her... that she would truly be a joy to HIM, as she grows and learns what He did for her. God is good.

(For a play by play of the delivery, visit our family blog at Laus R Us)

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

A new journey...

When I started this blog, I did so with the intent of sharing my life journey as a daughter, sister, wife (pastor's wife) and follower of Jesus. Never in a million years did I dream that I'd be adding to my list of life experiences the title "mother."

About nine months ago, my husband and I began a new journey... a very unexpected journey. (You can read more about it in my posts "The Unexpected Day" part one and two.) Now, as a I sit here listening to the fussy cry of my newborn daughter, I find myself on a new journey... a humbling, challenging, often frustrating but always rewarding journey... the journey of parenthood.

But before I begin sharing what God is teaching me on the parenting adventure, I must share the "rest of the story" in how He brought us through nine months of a high risk pregnancy, 40 hours of intense labour, and a scary moment of delivery in the birth of our daughter... Abigail Joy. Stay tuned as I relay what God did.

He is Amazing...

(As posted on our family blog -

I need to brag a little... not about Abbie Joy (although I could do that for hours too), but about my amazing husband. Sherman and I have been married for 10 years, 11 months, and I can honestly say that never before have I been more proud, more grateful, more amazed by him than I am right now.

His help with Abbie has been invaluable to me, his encouragement for me (especially when I melt down) has been uplifting, and his overall calm and gentle approach to Abbie and her fussiness has melted my heart. From the beginning of this journey, through the traumatic 40 hours of labour and heart-pounding delivery, Sherman has amazed me. Through the birth he was my cheerleader, my prayer warrior, my reminder that "this too shall pass." When the doctor finally declared that we were both "alright", he was my teddy bear -- melting into tears and expressing over and over how proud he was of me and of Abbie. Through the sleepness nights in the hospital, battles over breastfeeding and the overload of information coming from the nurses, he was my warrior and protector. In the recovery at home and the adjustment in finding a routine for our new family, he's been my saviour, my confidant and my shoulder to cry on. And even now, as I look over and see my baby cuddled up in her daddy's arms, he is my rescuer after a long day with her! I can't say enough about the man I married... he's amazing...