Saturday, March 23, 2013

Sweet Ayla

I posted this 4 years ago today...

Today my precious baby girl turned 2 years old! (yesterday we had her little party and she was definitely the little "belle of the ball") Memories of her birth flooded my mind all day as I played with her and held her and just stared into her beautiful blue eyes. I am so thankful to God for my darling girl. 

When I found out that I was pregnant with her, Joe was convinced that we would be having twin boys. I didn't believe the ultrasound technician when she told me it was a girl. We actually had five confirmations through ultrasound and I still didn't believe it until moments after her birth in the delivery room. My pregnancy was very similar to the other two except that I was more nauseous with her than I was with the boys. After going for my 20 week ultrasound appointment my doctor informed me that the radiologist detected that her brain ventricles were "mildly prominent" and that she had a choroid plexus cyst. He told me not to worry but to schedule a level three ultrasound and to make sure my appointment had the genetic counselor there as well. The hospital could not get me in for three weeks. I was in agony. I was so worried about my baby and could do nothing but wait and pray. Of course I googled and looked up everything I could on the internet about this condition which only scared me all the more. Everything from developmental delays to hydrocephalus popped up. I remember specifically one evening when I was crying to Joe about how upset and worried I was and he looked at me with a wisdom that I never before had seen in his eyes and said, 

"If God chooses to give us a special needs child, He will. He has a reason for everything and if it's His will, it's His will and it won't change the love I have for her already, as a matter of fact I'll probably love her even more!" 

He had this reassuring peace and strength that I did not have. I remembering blaming myself for wanting a girl so badly and thinking this is what I get for wishing for her. 

Before I got pregnant with Ayla, a friend from church came up to me and asked me when I was having my little girl. I was like What? How do you know I'll have a girl? She told me that she had envisioned my Joe, the boys and me with a little girl standing in front of a church and she had a feeling that I was going to have a girl one day. ...a couple of months later, Ayla was conceived... So after finding out about Ayla's condition, I ran up to her at church and in between sobs managed to explain what was wrong. She laid hands on me and prayed with me and as soon as she did, I felt this peace just come over me. That sick feeling in my stomach disappeared and I was at ease. At that moment, my faith grew more than it ever had before. I knew there was a God. The "God who sees me" saw me right then and there! So many people were praying for my baby. They were praying for God's healing and for His will at the same time. 

So the weeks passed and I went to my appointment. The genetic counselor wanted to be in the room and the technician scanned me and looked me straight in the face and said , 

"Her brain ventricles are completely normal and there is no cyst." 

I started bawling my eyes out! I was so relieved! The doctor came in and scanned me and said it was probably an error. He said that they probably measured the wrong area of the brain. I thought, maybe...or maybe, just maybe...God performed a miracle and healed my baby. Why? I don't know why. All I know is that my God, "El Elyon": the Name, is the God who sees me. He hears my cries and calms my fears. He is Jehovah, God and through His precious son chose to give me life and I will forever praise his most holy name! 

Lord, today as I celebrate the birth of my sweet Ayla, I thank you for hearing my cries and calming my fears. Thank you for my precious girl. May her life continue to be a testimony of your grace to an unbelieving world.

2nd Birthday


Kissing 5 goodbye!
Today I am thanking God for giving us these last six years with our little miracle.  We have been blessed with dollies and drama!! How grateful I am today for our sweet Ayla who has brought us so much joy!!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Another One Bites the Dust

I grew up watching the "Bad Boys" (a.k.a. the "Detroit Pistons" for any of you who were under a rock in the 80's or not in the Detroit area or were toddling around or not even born yet you young-ins!)  Isiah Thomas was my favorite because first of all he was a point guard and second of all he was short...(6 feet 1 inch did indeed look short next to the rest of the bad boys)  We watched them win back to back championships, it was awesome!

My dad loved the game and my older sister was the most aggressive basketball player I have ever seen to this very day.  Thinking back on the way she would hold the ball and growl as she flung her elbows from side to side still sends chills of fear down my spine.  I never dared try to take the ball from her, she was and still is pretty darn tough!

So I grew up playing basketball through the 8th grade.  I even went to McCracken Basketball Camp the summer before Junior High and suffered through a running cramp the entire week, if you didn't know that was me!!  I didn't continue in high school because I became a cheerleader...much to my big sister's dismay (we were polar opposites and still are but opposites attract, right?  I think they do as long as you don't live under the same roof because we have a great relationship now but definitely had our fair share of WWE, WWF at the time, smackdowns and they were scary, let me tell you...I think Natalie would agree because I did have some pretty sharp nails...)

Needless to say I wasn't as strong or aggressive as my big sis, but I wasn't a china doll either.  I could hang pretty tough, even if it wasn't with NKOTB (never liked them, sorry girls, remember I had an older sister who probably would have ended my life if I did, we liked U2!  But I have to admit I couldn't hide my love for Debbie Gibson and she still rips on me about that!)

My boys are really into basketball right now regardless of the fact that their dad is Mr. Hockey.  For any of you Trentonites, don't worry they still play hockey but are really enjoying the court too!   I also would like to add that our Trenton Trojan boys varsity basketball team has won districts and their first game of regionals...the farthest they have gone since mother-in-law's brother is the coach and it is all very exciting, so I guess the boys have inherited some basketball-loving genes from "daddy hockey's" side as well!  Unfortunately the gene wasn't passed onto Joe and I will never forget the first time I played him in "Pig" when we just started dating and he literally turned red and got angry when I beat him.  The boys did however take on the "Very Competitive" trait for sure!

So back to my original point...As some of you may know, I had a really bad scare last year.  It was the day after Easter and the boys and I were shooting hoops in the driveway.  They had the net lowered and Micah dared me to dunk.   And in my sparkly flats I ran up and dunked but closed my eyes and held onto the rim because I was afraid the ball was going to hit me in the head.  Next thing I know I am on the ground under the whole backboard, rim and net.  Blood was pouring from my head and the boys were terrified.  Later Jonah told me I screamed, "Help, Help me Jesus in heaven!"  a few times.  And THANKFULLY (bold caps don't express my gratitude) he did help me!  Miraculously, I was not seriously injured.  I did take my first ride in an ambulance and experience my first concussion and looked like a creature from Avatar for a week or so...but overall I recovered amazingly well.  And I do admit, laying in bed for a week being pampered and loved on by my kids who are still traumatized to this day that their mama almost died in front of them was pretty wonderful (I know, I'm bad...when the kids are talking back or complaining I do pull out the "remember-when-I-almost-died-in-front-of-you?" card)

And a couple of people have brought up the big fall to me recently.   And no they didn't call me "Floor Jordan" or "Vanilla Thunder" while bringing it up even though I have been referred to as both, hahaha very funny!  And on Sunday at Micah's 3 on 3 tournament I was simply walking down literally 6 bleacher steps.  Ayla and I were heading to the vending machine and I BIT THE DUST and accidentally tried to take down an 80-something year old man on my way down to the gym floor.  I was down and down hard.  The pain in my foot and wrist were over ridden by my embarrassment.  One mom chuckled and said that was soooo something she would do and the rest of the crowd stared wide eyed and I just know they were all thinking "I am so glad that was her and not me..."  I kept apologizing to the old man, I really do think I may have hurt him, he moved to the middle of the row for the next game, he wasn't going to let anyone else grab his poor shoulder on the aisle way again!  I got up and Ayla was so concerned!  Now I have fallen hard and flat on my back in front of all three of my kids at the basketball court...We got out in the hall and I didn't want to go back into the gym.  I held Ayla on my lap and held back my tears as she asked me over and over if I was ok.  I don't know if I was more excited that she cared or that she wasn't embarrassed of me.  I did make my way back into the gym and avoided ALL eye contact with the crowd!

Someone told me that maybe I should stay away from the basketball court.  That we don't go too well together.  That may be true.  Sometimes I feel like that with God.  I believe a certain way, deep in my heart I have this desire to be one with Him  And then I do something foolish, sometimes I don't even see it coming and my feet just fall out from underneath me and I wind up embarrassed by the things I have said or done, my example failed again. I don't want to look the people around me in the face.   Sometimes, I am trying too hard to do something on my own that I am not cut out to do and the whole thing falls on top of me and I have no where to look but up...And maybe I should just stay away from church to save myself the humility of  biting the dust in front of the congregation.  But then I am reminded that if I never failed, if I never wound up down on the ground, I would have no need for a Savior.  I am less but He is more, and His love for me will always be enough!!

And I don't think that I am going to be able to stay away from basketball, we have too long of a history together (even if I do have a scraped up foot from the latest fall!)