Friday, March 30, 2007


I have to find a way to be a Christian. I don't know where to start, but, I know that's where I've decided to go.

I think I've seen this before. I had to make a difficult choice. When I was alone growing up at home, I was set to be rescued from my circumstances by a man; that's what I wanted. Yeah; it's what I wanted but year after year went by, and the pain of no such person materializing got worse and worse. Eventually I broke and decided I'd rather be saved by God in His own way than keep on waiting for my conditions to be met. And then, He helped me transform my thinking so that I could rescue myself. So, that worked out pretty well....

Now I see once again I am fighting what isn't fair in my life in the same way. I've set conditions, again. And, so far I haven't settled for anything less. I want it my way. I want fulfillment. Meanwhile time is ticking away, and my heart is wasting away. All these attitudes were stages I think I had to work through, and perhaps I've completed all of the negative ones now. This last one I'm engaging is very similar to the one I mentioned from the past, above: lowering my standards, to include a larger scope of fulfillment on God's terms.

Still, I don't know how to reach around the pain to grasp faith. I don't have any ideas. I have complete lack of confidence that I will walk away from this post and be any better at closing the disconnect. At least at this juncture I'm open to the potential. I have to, and I am willing, to offer at least that small hope.

What a good baby

I was not prepared for how good a baby boy little Elijah is. He is so mature for his age. As soon as he arrived he looked at his mommy and stopped crying. He knew exactly what nursing was and didn't need me to teach or encourage him. Amazing! And on the first night in the hospital, we settled down to sleep and he began to fuss a bit.... But, mommy said "Go to sleep," and he stopped, and did just that... for several hours!

And still, he knows his mommy. He is a pleasant distraction for someone who is already so distracted! I took him to the lactation clinic and the nurse said, "Elijah gets the gold star today for weight gain." That's because in one week he gained a whopping 12 ounces... approaching a pound. Imagine if he grew a pound a week for the rest of his first six months. That would make him 8 + 22 pounds at six months, but, hopefully he won't grow up quite that fast. :(

Still, every day I look at him, his face has changed. It keeps getting fatter and bigger. He looks so familiar when I examine his features. It's part Ben's family, for sure, there's something else there I haven't identified yet.

There is nothing more wonderful to me than the little things we share. When he's eating he'll put his hand on mine or softly stroke my wrist. He loves to hold my hair and it doesn't hurt me. He lets me kiss him and sometimes it doesn't make him irritable :)

All the time I spent being pregnant, I never once imagined these sweet days.

As of last Thursday he is 9 lbs 6 ounces and 22 inches long. What a good baby.

Drive-by Disillusion

Surrender can't be on my terms. If I'm the one who is losing the battle, that means privilege is not mine.

Today I was driving and as I neared home I passed as I always do the very small and old apartment complex as I turn onto my street. Every time I have ever passed these homes I think about those who live there. All of them are Mexican-American, and many of them stand outside drinking beer and fixing their old cars. I know a few of the children who live there. I've done my best to reach out to one family there, a single mother and her three children. The kids have been over to my house several times through the years, and the eldest tells me in the summer that he can't come over to swim in my backyard because he has to go with his mother and pick berries to help make money. It breaks my heart and I love that mother very much even though I've never spoken to her.

This time when I drove by I thought of the image they must see in me (we wave when we see each other every time).... I'm wearing sunglasses, dressed nicely, driving a nice car, singing along to the music with the sun shining. I must look perfect to them. Like everything is going my way. Meanwhile, what am I thinking? I am thinking about what I don't have... which is obviously so much less than they.

Disappointment wouldn't be what it was if it didn't truly disappoint. If it were not inexplicable, unexpected, or unfair.

Does life hurt? Yes. For some people it hurts more than others. Some people have more than just one thing to be honestly saddened over.... A missing father, trouble making rent, social rejection; just a few of the things I could imagine in my mind that might dampen the cheery sunshine that's over everyone today.

As I wave and pass by, what if the feeling they feel when they see me, is disappointment and disillusion with their own life? What if when they see me they wonder why, and think life is unfair?

Have I lost touch with how wonderful what I have been given, truly is wonderful? I don't want to be the ignorantly prideful type who does a drive-by insult to those who live more humbly than I. If I think I've learned what it feels like to live with something unfair, I ought to practice discretion and gratitude over the good things I have.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007


Yesterday evening we got home at about nine o'clock from the hospital. Went straight to bed but this little boy got sick from our desperate attempt to satisfy his pre-milk-coming-in appetite with formula. He threw up, so I gave up trying to sleep to just be with him. Took him to the bathtub. He didn't like the water, either, so I quickly wrapped him up in a warm towel and put him against my chest.

All night long he had been giving fuss to try and nurse, but this time I guess he was just too tired to bother the head-bobbing because of my skin. He buried his head down into the towel, and grabbed a fist-full of my hair to hold on. The whole little realm taken up by his body was well within just my navel to clavicle. I looked down into his fetal wrap and was amazed, taking in what surely was the most life-like ultrasound I could have ever hoped to have. I felt a little intimidation this angle to see just how big his head was.... His index finger was inserted into his mouth, and he wimpered every other breath.

It must have felt natural to him to roll up in a ball and be held. After all, we were only 50 hours postpartum. I remained there, rocking him, looking at him... awestruck. And pleased to be the one he wanted to bring comfort.

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