Sunday, November 20, 2011

No Time to Grieve (2)

I left you last with the horror birthing a baby that I would never hold in my arms, into a toilet.

I now take you to the next day.

It was just that. Another day.

My girlfriend came over to make sure that I was resting. she put the children to the chores that they were trying to wiggle out of, she prepared dinner, and helped me put together a birthday cake for my husband.

You see, October 26th, the day I labored and bled and lost a blessed life to the sewers, was my husband's birthday.

Now, the date reserved in our family to specifically celebrate my husband's life will also be the date that I remember as filled with pain and grief.

And. Yes, there's more. And, my husband's uncle died that day. His uncle was that kind of uncle that all the kids love. The kind whose relationship didn't dim or end as the children grew. He was a good friend. A man who always had time to listen. A man for whom a surprise visit was never an imposition.

I hope Uncle Tony is rocking our baby.


Friday, November 11, 2011

No Time to Grieve

*Please note that details regarding this miscarriage are not withheld, and may be viewed as stark, grisly, and overwhelming.*

The last time I posted, I was expecting. My family was planning for a new baby. We were choosing names, deciding how to rearrange closets, planning the purchase of a new stroller, marking the calendar.
Now, when we flip the 2012 calendar over to May, we will see the due date marked, but we won't have a baby that is due on that date.
Our baby was born on October 26, 2011. She shouldn't have been. She had already died at 7 1/2 weeks gestation, but she stayed with me for another 6 weeks.
I had been to the OB, and and two ultra sounds confirmed that the baby was far too small, that there was not growth, and no heartbeat. I walked around for a month and a half knowing that the baby we had been planning for and had grown to love already, was dead.
For six weeks, the hormones that the baby's tissues and the pregnancy products put off rendered me still morning sick. My breasts were still tender, and constant hunger continued to plague me.
We told our children that the baby had died. They had many questions, good ones, too. They wanted to know if the baby was coming home soon, whey did the baby die, and would they get to see the baby. It helped to answer their questions. I didn't have a definite answer for all of them, but they accepted that, too.
I had a decision to make. I needed to decide if I would allow things to progress naturally, with out a defined time frame, take a pill that would induce labor, or have a D&C. None of those options sounded good to me.
So, I waited.
Then, I began to bleed. And I cried. I have miscarried before. Last time, that baby was only 3 or 4 weeks gestation, and we hadn't had time to adjust our emotions to expecting and loving a baby. That miscarriage was, physically, very easy. More like a heavy period and embarrassingly easy to dismiss. At least, I thought I had dismissed it.
Now, though, I called a friend, and told her that I was bleeding. She came to my house and picked me up, along with my little ones, and took us to her house.
Then, the surprise came. I started having contractions. They were hard, painful ones. Just like labor.
I bled and bled and bled. I'm not sure I have actually seen so much blood. Every time I had a baby in the hospital, the blood was cleaned up before I was up and around to see any of it. This time, there was no doctor, no nurse, no orderly.
So I labored, over a toilet. I already knew that the baby was too small for me to recognize. That even if I bled into a bucket and saved everything, I would never find it. So, I didn't. I bled into the toilet instead.
I flushed my baby down the toilet.
This slays me. This hurts, and disgusts me.
*more to come...*

Saturday, September 24, 2011

I've said before, right on this very blog, that I refuse to be ruled by my circumstances.

I have taken a stand against circumstances. I would NOT allow things to happen TO me.

BUT - I missed out.

Circumstances do happen. Things often happen to people. That's part of life. We are not in control of the universe.

What I missed out on, possibly~probably, was...


Two friends have mentioned this recently.

One spoke of learning to love through even through the circumstances that robbed her son of what we call a full life and deprived her of the 'common' joys of motherhood.

The other spoke of Paul, and his prayers for the churches of his day. He did not pray that circumstances would change. He prayed that people would grow through those circumstances.

Things happen, and I can choose whether I act or re-act.

Even when crushed, I can choose whether to glorify my pain or my God.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

In a Hurry

When you are buying hair conditioner, and you read the label and find the word conditioning, don't assume anything.

I shampooed my hair twice this morning.

If you see frizzy Cousin It traipsing about today, just wave and smile!


Friday, September 9, 2011

Here We Go Again!

It appears we'll be adding another creature to TheZoo.

*I know, we thought that, too!*

We believe that His plans are better than our own,
so here's to the New Zoo Review.

We don't know what kind we're getting, but we know about when.

Now's the time to figure out an addition to the building,

or mucking it out in the real estate world!

Please join is in prayer, planning, and laughing along this unexpected adventure!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

New Blog Design!

Hey! Check out the new ZooMama Chronicles blog design!
More fun to come!


Sunday, August 7, 2011

Planning for School

I was in the throes of planning for another year of home education. There was a panic creeping in, as I kept glancing at the calendar, counting out the too few weeks left between today and the start of the local school year.

I'm not near ready.
Forms haven't been sent to the school, final okays and purchases of curriculum and material haven't been done, and my lofty plans to organize the past few years of school disarray never came to fruition.

Then I remembered.

We didn't receive last year's curriculum until January of '11. Giving us until January of '12 to finish.
Relief, calm, exhale.

Then, the realization that I am right on task!

I am where I want to be in the planning stages for next year. This organization stuff just might pan out!


Saturday, August 6, 2011


It's terribly exciting. My FaceBook business page Made by the ZooMama has just under 300 fans.

My heart is palpitating.

I'm breaking out in a nervous sweat.

The most intelligent thing I can think of to say is

"Freaking Sweeeeeeeeeeet!"

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Crochet Adventures!

My husband thought maybe he was indulging me in just another hobby. Something I might start and not finish. Something I'd give up on after a bit. Yes, I do that.

Then I SOLD some of the things I made. Yeah! Really! That got me pretty excited. Now I crochet anytime I can. Mostly in the dead of night when everyone has gone to sleep. Occasionally, when Jerry has a day off, I crochet all day and finish a few items.

Some of what I've made recently is listed on my FaceBook page MadeBytheZooMama.

Check out the Zoo's new adventure, and pass it along!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Where on EARTH have I Been?

I've been crocheting!

Okay, there are so many other things, too. Housekeeping, childraising, preparing for another year of home education. We even took a short vacation! (more to come on that!)

Mostly, I've been working up hats in all sorts of shapes and sizes. I've given most of them away, but I also sold some! I'm hoping to sell more. Can't wait to see what happens with this venture~! You can find me Facebook page under 'Made by the ZooMama'! Come visit!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Anniversay Celebration! (Pt.2)

As promised, part two of the Amazing Anniversary Adventure.

If you know our family, you know that adventure is a regular part of our lives. Why would something go smoothly when it could be memorable, instead?

After we had a nice home cooked breakfast and the snow tires were back on the van, we attempted the pass again. The area where we were previously bogged down was now clear and wet. We still encountered snow further up, but made it to our first 'plan B' destination. We shopped and ate and chatted and held hands walking up and down the cobblestone roads. Without a stroller!

We headed on toward our final destination and checked in to the resort. The room was fantastic. Mostly because it was ONE room with ONE bed. No cribs, no pallets, no cots, no fold out couch. And television! You laugh, but we don't have television at home. We watched the news and American Idol, and flipped through a bunch of unfamiliar shows. And took a nap!

Dinner was great. There was no mac'n' cheese. No PBJ. No pizza. There was Lambchops with Pomegranate Molasses, asparagus, marinated flank steak, and salad with croutons that no one stole!

The next morning, I soaked in the tub with a book. No one pounded on the door shouting their extreme emergency of "He LOOKED at me!" Hubby took a walk on the beach. Later, when I went out on the deck I saw that he had drawn in the sand "I (heart) U!" How freaking romantic is that ?!?!?!

Then, we took another nap. We had a late check out for purchasing the date night package, and we were so tired. Hard to believe, I know. Then there was a pounding at the door. Housekeeping wondered if we would be leaving soon. She knocked 45 minutes early. *sigh*

We did check out and made a beeline for Starbucks. Hubby noticed the building for the local radio station, so he tuned in. We were making our way toward home when we heard that the pass we were headed for was closed due to an avalanche. Another change in plans. Fortunately we had left early. We were planning on stopping in to a couple of places on the way home. Instead, we headed toward another pass, which extended our drive time by a couple of hours.

We stopped at a pub called Pour Me for lunch. I liked the name. If a place has a punny name, I'll probably do business there.

We made it back to our home city to find out that the road home was closed due to flooding.
Double *sigh*.

Fortunately, one set of friends kept a couple of the kiddos one more night, and another set of friends put the rest of us up for the evening. We had a great visit and hung around leisurely the next morning while hubby went out to check on the road.

We finally made it home. We're already in the midst of planning another adventure.

My brother is getting married in another state.

Any bets on smooth sailing?

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Anniversay Celebration! (Pt.1)

What made me imagine that my family could embark on adventure without the 'adventure'? Who knows. It all began with the idea of Hubby and myself going overnight someplace - without the Zoo. The sitter search began. It didn't take long. We have wonderful, generous friends that actually like us and enjoy our children. We had two places to split up six kiddos. There's where the adventure really begins.

One of the sitters fell ill. These things happen, no hard feelings. BUT - now what? The sitter that was left bravely (and maybe foolishly) offered to take all six. Well, she has a daughter with some physical challenges that prove nighttime to be difficult. The idea of having all of those kids, with two of mine still two and younger possibly not sleeping well away from home, gave ME nightmares!

So, again, I put out the call and three more people responded almost immediately. Angels!
The kiddos are all delivered, parents see the smallest ones successfully tucked in, and go home to pack up and sleep before the early morning departure to a tranquil lakeside retreat.

We got up around 5 am, stopped for coffee, and took off. Conversation, lovely, uninterrupted, fully thought through conversation! Oh, how I have missed my husband! Yes, he comes home every night. We just don't often talk to one another.

About this close >-< to the top of a rather long incline, we encounter snow. Loads and loads of snow. Snow falling, snow on the ground, snow piled up 7 feet on either side of the road. But, we saw snowplows going down, so they must be headed back up, soon. We fishtail and slide and get stuck. It's fantastic riding along in Hubby's little rollerskate.

After several tries, including an attempt to drive behind a snowplow, we turn around and head for home.

Here we are, Hubby is putting the snow tires back on the van, a bucket of chains in the back. I am making breakfast. We are giving it another go! Wish us luck. Lots of it, please!

(to be cont'd...)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

The Plant

My daughter needed two potted plants for a science experiment.
I bought them, then left them in the back of the van for a week.
They stayed in place, and the soil was still moist when I finally removed them from the van.
As I brought them into the house, I noticed that they looked very different from one another.
One was healthy...
and the other wasn't...

Both plants were the same, grown at the same nursery, both were shipped in the same truck, both sat for sale at the same store, were bought by the same person, were checked out at the same check stand. Both plants endured the same harrowing ride in the back of the van over the next week. I hadn't forgotten about them. I know they were safely nestled in their places and wouldn't fall over. I knew they had plenty of water, and I had a plan for both of them.
But they reacted differently. One plant stayed healthy and whole, beautiful to look at.
The other one...didn't. It is in a sad state. The leaves are wilted, and it seems to have no desire to return to it's healthy state.
Both plants are now in a sunny window, both are being cared for and looked after. I still have a purpose for both plants. I can still use them. Even the sad, sick one.
I hope the healthy one continues to flourish.
I hope the sad, sick one becomes healthy and whole.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Just a Short Little Nap, Please?

"One day, Jesus said to his disciples, "Let's cross over to the other side of the lake." so they got into a boat and started out. On the way across, Jesus lay down for a nap. And while he was sleeping, the wind began to rise. A fierce storm developed and began to swamp them, and they were in real danger."

Luke 8:22-23

I'm guessing that Jesus didn't take a nap because he was in a bad mood, or that he wasn't content with his ministry. I can be certain, because of scripture, that Jesus didn't lay down for a nap because he just couldn't handle his hectic schedule and wanted to get away from it all.

He DID have a hectic schedule. He DID have people clamoring for his attention everywhere he went. He DID have people constantly question his wisdom. He was away from his family and home during his ministry.

Any bets that Jesus lay down for a nap because he was tired?

Moms, when you say you need a nap, when your flesh is ready for a rest, does it happen this way for you, too?

I lay down, I close my eyes. My muscles begin to relax, my joints loosen, then BAM! The "wind begins to rise". Something happens that calls me out from my place of rest.

If I went to the resting place with an attitude of having 'had it up to here', then when something with the children requires me to get up from my rest, I am going to be, well, less than happy about it.

If I have been joyful (choosing to be content, even when things aren't going MY way), then an interruption to my rest will be dealt with peacefully and perhaps I can return to rest.

May those times I seek out rest be to renew my flesh, not to escape life!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Hard Life

We sift through the advice, the warnings, the advertisements. We ask questions, we pray, we read and research. And sometimes, sometimes we just stumble around.

Parenting is sometimes just hard. There are days when life happens, you know how you ought to respond, you love your children, and it still feels really difficult.

Did anyone ever tell you that? That life is hard?

I browsed an online book store this week and saw titles that had all the answers! They had phrases like 'Three easy steps to...' and 'One week to a better...' and '...has never been so easy'.

I understand the desire to have some things be made less work. Streamlined process is more efficient. But what if efficiency would ruin something, rather than make it better? What if time spent in the trenches, sweating it out, working so hard you feel sore for days after, is the best way?

Parenting is like that. Somedays you just have to sweat it out.

And today, October 30th, 2014, I feel exactly the same as I did when I originally posted this content on January 13, 2011. It's still true.