Thursday, December 09, 2010

Thoughts on Pregnancy--Due Date Woes

As I said, the due date was (and is) the easiest for me to articulate when it comes to my apprehension about this pregnancy. My due date is May 17--the ultrasound guesstimate was May 21 (even worse in some ways!) but since those can be off a week either way, my doctor says we go with May 17.

Here's why it's bad...

The one-year anniversary of starting my call to this place--May 1. I really, really, really wanted to be here more than one year before having a baby. And yes, with May 17--it's possible, but oh so barely.

Easter is really late this year--April 24. Not quite in the 2 week window for due dates, but darn close--especially when Baby Girl was a full month early! Since she had no problems related to being early, maybe I just gestate shorter than average--it's possible. Really, really don't want to miss my first Holy Week/Easter here!

Synod Assembly is May 20-21. Not a huge deal, but I don't like missing these. Yes, I'm insane. I know.

May 31 is Baby Girl's birthday. Well in the 2 week window. She's young enough that if we have to change a day of celebrating, it won't be a big deal. But I don't want her to have to share her birthday! We'll probably end up doing one family party in May in the years to come anyway.

May 13 is when my stepson is to graduate from college. At this point, he says he's not going to participate in the ceremony, but I think his mom will probably make him. At least he won't care much if we can't make it because of the new baby. He is really laid back and takes everything in stride.

Now the biggie...May 22 is when my stepdaughter graduates from high school. (May 16 and 17 are her two final senior music performances) She was not happy to hear Baby Girl was on the way...she's adjusted beautifully. However, I knew she wouldn't be thrilled with the due date. When we told her I was pregnant, she said, "when?" Mid-may was what we answered rather than the date. Her words to her dad were "well, you better not miss my graduation." Ouch. I get it, I do. Every child wants her daddy there on special days. We have done everything in our power to get him to as many events as he can possibly. (And I've even gone alone to some events to videotape when he couldn't go--driving 3 plus hours in the winter to do so!) And I want him to be there for her. But if I'm having this baby, I want him with me more. Stepdaughter and I have always gotten along okay. There's never been "you aren't my mother" stuff--partly because I've never tried to be her mother, just someone who loves and cares for her. And sometimes, perhaps now more than ever when I'm more hormonal, I want to shake her and remind her how much her dad loves her, how much he's been there for, how much he makes every effort, and yes, while's he's not there every night and day since her mom and he couldn't work it out, she has had so many more opportunities to share special things with him than I ever did with my dad. She's had him nearly twice as long and more often than not, when she has a choice, she doesn't choose to spend time with him. (Especially now that we are 20 minutes from her and she has a car.) He lets her choose to do other things. He doesn't command she come over or beg her too, usually. He's asked on occasion. But I really, really, really don't want to put hubby in the position of choosing me/baby and her graduation. I don't want her to resent me any more than she might/does(?) for taking her daddy away from her. (Never mind--her dad didn't leave her mom for me, but I'm not sure how she thinks about it.) I don't want her to have reason to resent this baby too--it was hard enough to accept that she was no longer Daddy's baby--and baby girl no less.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Thoughts on Pregnancy, Part 2

At first, I didn't really want to tell anyone. I know there's the (un?)spoken rule about not sharing in the first trimester because the risks of miscarriage is greater then. And that was okay; I didn't want to tell. I kept expecting something to go wrong because I wasn't sure about what I was feeling. I didn't WANT a miscarriage, but I wondered how upset I would be if I had one. I've read blogs of many women who mourn intensely at 5 weeks (which was before I even found out) and name that child and everything. I don't really know when I start defining 'child'--but for me, it's not that soon. But everyone is different and I don't know the story that led them to that point; we all handle things in different ways. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't name the child at that point though.

Maybe we just aren't good at naming! With Baby Girl, we picked out the boy name well before I was due--it was the only first boy name we could agree on. (And my only naming criteria was that I wanted/want to use my dad's middle name as a boy middle name so they had to go together.) Baby Girl, we were narrowing it down--and made our final narrowing down to 2 on the way to the hospital! I named her when I saw her and have never regretted it for a second! But I guess that's beside the point.

And then I went for my first prenatal visit--just with the nurse. And found out the due date from her; I had found calendars on-line too. And it was reconfirmed why the timing was so horrible (which I promise I'll get to at some point!) which was the part I could most articulate as to why I was having mixed feelings.

One funny from that visit--the nurse was asking questions about medical history, etc. and asked if I had ever had fertility problems. I just laughed--I got pregnant while on birth control, uh, no! (I know infertility isn't funny--but it certainly hasn't been my problem!)

But there was a glimmer of hope for me about my due date--I was hoping we were really wrong! The nurse was able to find a heartbeat--which was really early for that with my due date and she said it was higher than she'd expect. That coupled with the fact that I was on birth control could have my dating wrong, even though we knew when I had my last period. For that reason and for the genetic testing my doctor now does, I was scheduled to have an ultrasound. Perhaps that would indicate a different due date.

That made me feel a better; though still uncertain.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Thoughts on Pregnancy

It's my blog, right? I can say whatever I want. But it sometimes is hard to admit things...and this is probably the best place to do it because those who read (those I know in real life and those I don't, but feel like I do from blogreading) seem like the people I can trust with these thoughts.

In early August, I had my annual physical. My doctor asked about whether or not we would have more kids. My response was that it was possible; we were discussing trying for a few months early in 2011. I also said, "Right now would be a horrible time to get pregnant; the timing would be really bad." (Because of the due date--more on that later!)

And then August passed and I was thinking lots of things. Hubby and I talked; he turns 40 in 2011. That's his cut-off for having kids. I get it; he has a 21 year old son, a 17 year old daughter and 2 1/2 year old Baby Girl. This is a big enough span--there's already the chance that Baby Girl and baby#2 will have close in age nieces or nephews. At least the older kids aren't trying to follow in their parents footsteps and start young! Stepson isn't really interested in girls, or rather he's socially awkward enough that he hasn't met people. Stepdaughter has a boyfriend, but (while I know it's possible) I think that both she and he are not to that point.

I was also thinking about the fact that I'm happy to be nearing the end of diapers and the need for 100% constant supervision. I'm in the throes of terrible two's and I don't know if I want to deal with that again. Baby Girl is still my heart and I don't know how I'll be able to share time and attention.

And then...I was late in September and in denial. I was particularly stressed; the start of a program year at a new call will do that to you. I had started a new generic of the same active birth control pill ingredient and when I've done that before, I've been late. And so I just kept going along. Until I realized that September came and went and I was REALLY late and I had other symptoms. So I took a pregnancy test.

And it was positive. Even though I can't read those stinking things...really, they are idiot-proof. I got the same kind I took with Baby Girl and I didn't read it right then either. Hubby looked at it and there was no doubt. And then when I paid attention to the picture that says which is which, I was like--duh!

And I wasn't thrilled. I wasn't elated. I was scared and unhappy and unsure. This wasn't how it was supposed to happen. I was at the point where I wasn't sure I wanted it to. But it had.

Monday, November 29, 2010


So I obviously gave up on the posting everyday in November thing--and I'm okay with that. I've been preoccupied with that which I wasn't ready to blog about until I made the news public in real life. And now that it is public, I'm still preoccupied with this baby. And still very busy with church, especially this Advent season. So I'll be posting more than before November, I think!

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Today I am most thankful for the fact that I took a day off of work. Despite a sermon for Sunday looming over my head, I decided not to work on that or other work things that should be done.

Now, that doesn't mean I did nothing. I gave Baby Girl a bath; I did mountains of home bookwork and filing; I cooked two real meals (but not Thanksgiving dinner--that's Saturday here!); I did dishes; I played with Baby Girl and read her books and snuggled with her. I helped prep our bathroom for painting, which MIL and FIL did today. We'll go look at vanities and countertops/sinks tomorrow--here in town in the afternoon. I'm guessing this home improvement store won't be insane that time of day. Oh and fixtures and towel bars.

I also read a magazine and watched some football and played on-line. It's not yet 7 p.m. and I'm just about ready for bed. When Baby Girl goes to bed, I probably will too. Tomorrow I will need to do some work--like that sermon.

But for now, I'll just continue being thankful.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Baby Girl Needs...

a new blog nickname. Because....

come spring/summer she will no longer be the baby in our house.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Toddler TMI

Baby Girl may not like this so much, but it's on my mind right now. We are slowly trying to make progress on potty training. Which is much harder than I thought because this girl is so smart--and always seems to know when she goes. My mom was visiting this week and so we kept Baby Girl home from daycare so that they could work just on potty training. I thought it'd work. Not so much.

Currently Baby Girl is on a poop every other day kind of schedule. (Which is amazing since I recall the first time a changed a diaper without poop! I think she was 9 months old.) Anyway...she was due to poop on Friday and didn't. So when she was moaning and crying Mommy at midnight, I thought it was because the poop was finally coming. She didn't try to sit up at first, so I lay by her and rubbed her tummy and tried to be soothing--not sure what was going on. Finally, she says, "I want to go wee-wee on the potty." So we got up, she sat on her potty--almost falling asleep--and peed.

She can wake up to pee, but doesn't know in advance during the day? Huh?

I know I'm just ready for her to be done with diapers!

Thursday, November 18, 2010


One important conversation had today. Was supposed to be over lunch, but sick children intervened. So it was over the phone. But it was important and good and I feel a bit relieved. Two more important conversations to go!

Now--if I could actually get some work a sermon for Sunday. That'd be helpful too!

Better posts will resume on Thanksgiving when I have a few days off!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Thanksgiving worship! ~ may need a tweak, but overall done
Confirmation lesson for tonight

Now...home to spend time with Baby Girl, back in 3 hours

1. reference letter
2. sermon for Sunday
3. Advent/Christmas plan

I can do this!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


I'm thankful to have the opportunity for our congregation to host the ecumenical Thanksgiving service in my city. But that means that I have to plan it...and I've been meaning to. But if I want any help (and I do), D-Day is in the morning. I have no experience planning an ecumenical service on my own. I'm meeting another pastor tomorrow to finalize it, but I want something to start with. I am becoming an awful procrastinator these last few weeks. I hate it. I just need to get caught up and then not get behind again!! Now...on to Thanksgiving. No more procrastinating by blogging tonight. Even if I don't want to fail anymore at this posting everyday thing!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Responsible One?

Yesterday after the morning of church, we went for a fast-food lunch. Baby Girl fell asleep on the way home. We got home, put her in bed and I laid down too--asking my hubby to wake me up in about an hour.

After that, these were my choices:
1. Stay in bed, sleep some more, spend a quiet (as quiet as it can be with a 2 1/2 year old) afternoon and evening at home

2. Drive an hour (one way) to a 2+ hour meeting for the church that I'm supposed to be at--and am supposed to bring two lay folks along to

Which was the responsible thing to do?

I did number two, even though I couldn't find lay folks to go. Which is why I felt even more like I should go. And I found it boring and frustrating. Many of the folks in the host city (not the host congregation) weren't even there. Really, I could take 2 hours of drive time to come to this and you couldn't take 20 minutes?

I still feel icky and tired. Today I wonder, was it worth it. I missed out on another nap, a time for my body to work harder on healing, restful time at home with Baby Girl and my hubby (and my mom who is visiting this week).

I can't do it all--why do I think others can? Why do all of us think others can? Why did we even have that meeting--it was so not useful. Ugh. That's all I have to say about it.

Saturday, November 13, 2010


I just feel yucky. My voice is fading. We'll see what tomorrow brings--I guess it will be what it is. Hopefully it will hold out enough for worship and Sunday School. The idea of a whole afternoon meeting is not appealing. I'd much rather curl up under a blanket and take a nap or watch football or anything else tomorrow. I suppose if I feel really awful I can skip, but I'm so not good at that.

Friday, November 12, 2010


The pile is neverending, isn't it? I try to do it all on one day though--it really makes me feel as if I've accomplished something. I can see the progress, even if it is fleeting. Today I didn't finish and that's okay because I don't have a super busy day tomorrow.

I love having Fridays home with Baby Girl, but wish I could accomplish more of the 'stuff' that needs to be done around the house. A 2 1/2 year old just isn't much help. And now I'm exhausted, my throat hurts and I want to sleep. But I must wait for a bit--the laundry that needs to be pulled out of the dryer half done should be done soon. I'll hang that, and then it's off to bed.

I'm sure it won't take me an hour to fall asleep like it took Baby Girl!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Toddler Bed

Two nights of good sleep! About a week or so ago, we converted Baby Girl's crib to a toddler bed. She hadn't been sleeping well prior and that didn't change. Except the last two nights. She has slept well--she even fell asleep in her bed last night! (Rather than on the floor and then moved to her bed.) We put a kingsize pillow next to her so it was blocking the opening because she ended up on the floor most other nights--in her sleep. That wasn't what woke her up either surprisingly enough. I think the pillow helped. It added warmth. Maybe she thought someone was laying next to her. And it kept her from falling out. I suppose she could roll hard enough to push it out, but I'm not worried about it. If she didn't get hurt before...

And besides, anything can happen at anytime. I broke my collarbone at age 4 falling out of a regular bed. Just hit the floor wrong I guess.

And I admit, I kinda like her toddling to us in the morning. Slowly walking toward us, shyling whispering "Mommy," pulling her up into our bed for a snuggle. I could use a snuggle now.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Inspiration Please Strike NOW

So I have yet to prepare my confirmation lesson for tonight. What I've done in the past is really boring--even to me. But the curriculum I have to use now has so little content on this topic (in my opinion). I am having trouble finding a middle ground. And I need something for tonight! This has to be done first before I move on to the piles of other things. Inspiration now would be very helpful!

Tuesday, November 09, 2010


I have always been a sound sleeper. Hubby tells me that once on vacation I slept through a tornado. (He looked out the window and said trees were blowing down to the ground.) I love to sleep--and need a lot of it.

Until Baby Girl. When I became a mom (and a breastfeeding one at that), I became a much less sound sleeper. But I still need lots of sleep.

Baby Girl (now 2 1/2) hasn't been sleeping well lately. That's debatable I guess--last night she wasn't up and awake, but she kept moaning in her sleep and crying out 'mama.' Which means 'mama' isn't sleeping well. I lay in my bed deciding whether or not to check on her. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don't. Sometimes I go in and lay on the floor next to her bed so I can just make comforting noises. Sometimes I fall asleep there--it's not very comfortable either. Last night was a bit unusual though; in the last few weeks, there have been many nights when she was really awake. And she doesn't usually want Daddy--which is good, since he usually doesn't hear her. And I end up awake anyhow. I guess I'd rather be awake and caring for her than just awake.

I am just so tired. And when I'm tired, I'm sluggish. And when I'm sluggish, not much gets done. And I have so freaking much to do! I have to push to get a ton done in the hour I have before I get Baby Girl. Maybe a to-do list for tomorrow will help!

Monday, November 08, 2010

Youth Ministry

So...youth ministry is an absolutely essential component of congregational life. I believe it. I also know that is not where my skills and talents lie. this small, struggling in some ways--vibrant in others--congregation I now serve, this was an area where there really wasn't anything. So I'm trying--a once a month high school group. First time there were 2 kids, last night there were 6. And I just kind of let them go to see how they interact with one another and me and talk about faith stuff and life stuff.

I came home with a splitting headache. And some thoughts about how I need to go from here.

1. I need to make a youth room happen. This has apparently been discussed ad nauseum for years and they are feeling pretty defeated I think. They are all smart kids; they understand we have a really small space and the space would have to be shared--in that it may be needed at times for certain other things. (So no black walls or graffiti or stuff like that) They need to know I (and the congregation) really do care about them.

2. I need to make some 'ground rules' next time. Nothing major--just things like, oh, don't talk when someone else is talking once we get started. I'm all about just hanging out time too--but once we start a conversation--let's listen to one another. Really--that's about the only one. They were pretty good about checking phones and putting them away, rather than texting throughout--so unless that becomes a problem later, whatever.

What else--I'm pretty clueless. But for now, I guess this will do.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Almost Dead Battery

I did want to post tonight, but the laptop battery is almost dead. And my battery needs enough recharging too that I'm not about to go after the cord. So there blogging every day!

Saturday, November 06, 2010


So I failed yesterday--though I wrote posts in my head. Does that count?

Yesterday was my day off--which means a day at home alone with Baby Girl (now in her TWOS--by which I mean we waited until 2 1/2 for the terribles to begin). We did laundry, got ready for in-laws to visit for the weekend, we cuddled and read books and napped, we went to see her older sister's variety show in the evening. We (okay--just I) got a little freaked out by what sounds like an animal in the chimney of the fireplace. Didn't see anything--Daddy will have to check this out today.

I only failed at the blogging thing. I was a good wife and mommy. And that's more important.

Thursday, November 04, 2010


I hate Wednesdays. One of my least favorite things about Wednesdays is teaching confirmation. In my last setting, I had 48 7th and 8th graders. I now have 10 6th, 7th, and 8th graders. Both have pros and cons. Overall, I think this 10 would be preferred.

But...Wednesdays are horrible on our family. Hubby was recruited for choir--they need more than one bass; he makes two. When choir decided on a meeting time, the selected Wednesday evening at the same time as confirmation. Which we all knew meant Baby Girl would be along and that hubby would have to be the one to care for her during that time if need be. This was okay for a week or two.

Then, a couple things happened. One--other parents have been having to bring their kids. Baby Girl wants so much to play with them, but they are old enough to be self-sufficient, but not old enough to play with her unsupervised. This is a challenge.

Two--Hubby decided to join/support fledgeling attempt at a praise group, which is meeting the hour right before choir. Which means we are all at church even longer.

Yesterday was particularly bad. I don't think Baby Girl napped at daycare--normally, 'grandma' tells me, but didn't say anything in particular. However, she fell asleep in her carseat on the way home. I let her sleep for an hour, which mean we drove to church before she woke up. This (and refusing to eat most of her supper) made her a particularly unhappy camper.

And our building is small enough that she can almost always see or hear me and has been in "mommy mode" a lot recently. A number of factors conspired last night and hubby finally took her home early leaving choir. This is not working--for her, or me. It also means a late bedtime and a fight to do so. The bedtime time itself wouldn't be so horrible if she had time to decompress herself at home before heading to bed. It makes Wednesdays even more stressful--and confirmation, when I'm distracted by her screaming or them having to walk through to where the potty is.

The problem is that pretty much everyone we know in this town that we'd trust to watch her during this time is busy at church on Wednesday evenings. I dont' know what we are going to do. But we can't keep this up--it's just not working.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010


Having a garage isn't something I thought I took for granted--but I realized that I have. For the last two nights, I parked my car in our garage! A novel concept--it only took 3 months to get one of our cars in our new garage. Our last house had a HUGE two car garage (extra long and extra wide) and an additional shed that was essentially a small one car garage. The only downside was that the garage was detached. That was a pain, especially when carrying a baby (and often other things) and trying to not let the screen door blow away and get the door unlocked and get in the house. An attached garage was on my must-have list for this house.

Which it is, but it is a TINY two car garage. We have 3 vehicles, a number of bikes, strollers, workbenches, and general garage stuff. One vehicle seriously will never go in the garage because it doesn't fit--with the garage empty. We lovingly call this hand-me-down vehicle "the land yacht." Thank goodness this is the one with a functioning remote start--we are coming up on winter after all. Nights have already been frosty.

We did get one estimate to add a garage stall. Way more than we expected! We will get another estimate, but yikes. It was almost double what we thought--and what we thought would have been a stretch. We do have a tiny shed too, but still--I'm not sure we'll ever get two vehicles in a garage at this house.

At least I get the garage and don't have to scrape windows! I'm grateful for that.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

I Hate/Love Fall

I hate fall. I hate the days getting shorter and the darkness descending earlier and earlier each day. I hate "fall back" with a toddler because I'm sure it won't mean an extra hour of sleep. I hate the weather not deciding if it's warm or cold. I hate it being chilly outside and then too warm inside, but not warm enough to open windows. I hate the cold, frosty mornings. I hate the wind. I hate knowing winter and snow will be here soon.

But I do love the colors of the leaves and the way the sun shines on them. I love when it is warm. I love seeing Baby Girl's face as we play in the leaves and throw them in the air.

I guess my hate list is longer, but I want to make sure to notice that there are always things to love!

Monday, November 01, 2010

NoBloPoMo -- is that right?

November Blog Posting Month? Something like that--it's been while since I've seen someone do the official thing--posting every day for the month of November. But it's a challenge I am going to take on. We'll see about success. And to up the likelihood of success, today's post will only be this. I'll save my other ideas for the next few days!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Doing it All

I can't do everything. I know that. I've always known it, I guess. But I'm getting better at realizing it.

However, how do I manage to waste so much time at work? Why am I not getting work done when I'm in my office? It's 10:30 a.m. and I've accomplished nothing in the nearly 2 hours I've been here! In order to be better able to get done at home what needs to be done on Friday and Saturday, today I must accomplish the following: a few items for tonight's board meeting, a sermon for Sunday, Sunday School prep (which is started). That's not much, but it's a lot. I have a seed of an idea for my sermon and that's all for that so far.

I have a meeting to go to at 3, home quick for supper, and back for meeting at 5:30. Must have this done by 3. So now it's to work!

Except--wow, this was boring! No one even commented on my last post which was funny--why am I even bothering?

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Green Hair and Blue Hamsters

Episode 1:

Baby Girl wakes up in the morning and calls out to me. I go in to get her out of her crib where she is standing with her arms outstretched.

Me: Good morning sweetheart!
BG: Mommy have green hair.
Me: What? Green hair?
BG: Mommy, you have green hair.
Me: I have green hair? No.
BG: You have green hair last night. Mommy have green hair. BG have green hair and we slide down it.
Me: I had green hair last night and you had green hair and we slid down it.
BG: Yes.
Me: Silly goose!

My best guess is a dream.

Episode 2:

Baby Girl is sitting on my lap playing with something and it sounds like she says 'hamster.'

Me: Hamster? Did you say hamster?
BG: Yes.
Me: Did you see a hamster at 'Grandma's' (daycare)?
BG: Yes, Kaylee has one.
Me: Did you touch it?
BG: Yes.
Me: Was it soft?
BG: Yes.
Me: Was it this big? (make hands into size of baseball)
BG: No.
Me: What it this big? (make hands smaller size)
BG: No.
Me: How big was it?
BG: This big! (smiling and putting her hands together over her head)
Me: Really? What color was it? (still thinking it's possible that Kaylee brought a hamster to daycare)
BG: Blue!
Me: A blue hamster?
BG: Yes! (smiling)

Conversation replayed by us for daddy later. Hamster still big and blue. Daddy and I kept talking and said something to the effect of 'was the hamster in your imagination?' to which we got silence and a smile. I think she knew she was making this up and didn't want to admit it!

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Hmm...that's a new one

So, a couple from the Kingdom Hall/Jehovah's Witnesses just left my office. They came by to offer me their publications and indicated they'd love to bring some by each month. They said that many people appreciate them and many clergy also like them. Hmm...

My best friend in elementary school was a Jehovah's Witness, so I kind of have a soft spot. I took the brochures. I won't be sharing them--nor will I get multiple copies next month.

I've got to admire their convictions--confessing their beliefs no matter what, but really--to a church? They weren't pushy, were friendly, and clearly not out for a fight.

But that is certainly a new one for me!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Rock, Rock, Zzzzz

Lately, as in the last couple weeks, Baby Girl has had a renewed interest in being rocked to sleep. This doesn't exactly coincide with being in our new home--the first two weeks here, she didn't want to be rocked. I have mixed feelings about it--but mostly enjoyment! I love to snuggle her, to feel her body against mine, to hold her until she gently drifts to sleep playing with her hair or mine. It's so relaxing--and I'm trying to only focus on her as I rock, to not think about the to-do list or what I should be doing that is 'more productive.' Oh sure, I sometimes think about sermon ideas or things I need to do, but it's still relaxing for me.

Which is precisely the problem. I rock her to sleep and then have no desire to do anything else. And 8:30 is just to early to go to bed--because it won't matter if I have 10 hours of sleep. I still don't like to see 6:30 a.m. And those boxes will not unpack themselves. But I'll get over it. I know these days of rocking are numbered. I'll take each and every one I can, her Baby Girl self snuggled into me as she goes to sleep and a depth of love that I can't put into words.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Balance and Guilt

So as I'm settling into my new call, my new home, my new life...I'm trying to find a new balance. A new balance in which guilt about not being good enough at anything seems to lurk just below the surface. And so, this afternoon, for this hour I'm sitting on my couch--home alone. I need to clean and organize and file at home; I need to write a sermon--ideally by 4 p.m. today so that it doesn't bleed into family time. But I need this too--just sitting in my home watching design tv. So I am--even though I could be wasting time in my office pretending to work. I'm trying not to feel guilty. I will go back to work soon and will really work. And my sermon will be done by Sunday morning--well Saturday evening this week as I'm preaching at a service then. I will spend the time I need to with my family. And stuff at home will get done when it gets done. I'll keep learning this balance. One design show at a time. Ha!

Monday, August 09, 2010

Me, Me, Me

Every so often, I go through this phase where I read lovely blog posts and want to comment, but change my mind because I seem to just be about me. I want to say something because I want others to know I'm reading and that I care, but I can't figure out what to say. Except something about me that is sparked by what I read. And so I say nothing.
And at the same time, I feel bad that I don't get many comments on this blog. And I have to re-evaluate yet again why I want a blog. I wanted a place to write, yes. But I think it's because I so deeply crave connection that I just can't seem to find. I'm trying here in my new place--to be less worried about what I say or who I am. But it's hard to make friends--who wants to be friends with their pastor? And I don't know that I want to initiate friendships--as in, invite certain people over for dinner and not others. Sigh.
But that doesn't seem to matter when I think of one connection this morning. Baby Girl wiped out on our new tile floor--barefoot, I'm not quite sure how she managed to slip where she did, but she cried harder than usual. No blood, no immediately obvious place of pain. And she let me pick her up and snuggle with her. Normally a owie involves a bit of a cry, a 'do you need a kiss?', 'yes,' a kiss, and then she's done and ready to go. Today she snuggled and even though she stopped crying, she just wanted to snuggle and nothing else. It was probably ten minutes--that's a long time for her these days. (Unless we are snuggling watching tv) It was so nice--an especially good thing for mommy as I prepared to take her to her new daycare for the first day today. That is, I guess, another post for another day.

Friday, July 23, 2010

BIGGEST Frustration in Moving

So, it's now official. The biggest frustration in moving EVER. My husband. You'd think I'd expect things to go this way--we've been married 9 years (next Wed. in fact) and been together about 13 years. I should know better than to trust anything he says about what he will get accomplished. And he comes by it genetically--so when I put my new house in the hands of him and his parents while I try to do my job (wedding rehearsal)--I should expect that virtually nothing that they say will get done will. My mom is here so she has had Baby Girl in her care and done TONS of packing. So that's been good--mostly. But Baby Girl is in the throes of terrible twos, she's certainly confused by all this, she fought sleep for over an hour tonight which is very unusual. My husband's words were "I will stay in the new house until all the painting is done so that we are ready to move Saturday when we have help.", immediately after closing, we picked the colors--2 whole rooms, and 1/2 of another. I helped with that and unloading the bit we had in my car and headed back to old home so I could do wedding rehearsal. So at 9 p.m., 1 room painted--and they are done for the night, but no worries--we'll paint it after we move the stuff. We had decided that we needed the rooms painted before we moved the stuff in! Oh--and he had planned to come to old home tonight, but now isn't. I am so frustrated. I don't know if any of this makes sense. And I guess it doesn't matter if it makes sense--because it doesn't matter what I think either--at least not about this.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


This morning on my way into the office, I dropped Baby Girl off at daycare and then stopped in at my old church to give them our new address and just chat with secretary and senior pastor. It was nice. A bit weird, but nice too. As I was telling them about everything, senior pastor said something to the effect of "well it seems like you have 9 of the top 10 stressors." While I'm not sure I'd go that far, it's true too. Lots of good stresses right now--related to buying and selling homes. It's challenging. Then add family dynamics, a toddler, 40 minute commutes, church dynamics, hot and humid weather--it's no wonder I have a screaming headache that drugs haven't yet touched.

And this is robbing me of my sermon mo-jo. I have to write a wedding sermon for this weekend. Think I'm going to use most of an old one--just need to update it a bit. But I think the bulk of it will work. Goal is to get that done before leaving here tonight.

And then the weekend sermon. I have an old one that looked okay--before I went to text study. Now, not so much. But do I have anything better? No. Goal is to do that tomorrow morning. Plan to take tomorrow afternoon off--moving related needs. Thursday afternoon and evening are full. I do have Thursday morning, but...

I want so much to be a good preacher. In this place that is struggling, they need positive encouragement and also a kick in the butt. And worship is the place I have right now. We will be living here soon so I can have a better shot at other venues, but for now--this is it. The last line of the lectionary text is "how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!" Okay, God, some Holy Spirit sermon writing mo-jo would be good about now!

I feel like I can barely manage a coherent thought--trying to work seems so pointless. But this has to be done. And I hate it--I hate that we are trying to move at what feels like the busiest time. Perhaps there wouldn't be a better one. But there are so many phone calls and strangers and different people, my extraverted side is getting a workout and it's draining the introvert! And my husband's goals of getting fully moved in one day is killing the J in me. I want to start organized and not rushed. But that's doubtful. I never felt like we got fully situated in our last home 7 years ago--and certainly not after the total rearrangement with the birth of our girl 2 years ago. I do not want to start that way again. It drains me.

Just some thinking 'out-loud.' Hoping it gets the creative juices going.

Monday, July 19, 2010


Today ~ see new home to do some measuring, meet couple about wedding this weekend

Tuesday ~ work--including evening meeting, hubby comes home

Wednesday ~ work, pack in the evening

Thursday ~ work, including evening meeting

Friday ~ CLOSE ON NEW HOME, wedding rehearsal ~ begin to survive presence of mom and in-laws and their desires to help (which will be helpful but also stressful)

Saturday ~ wedding

Sunday ~ worship, begin VBS week in the evening

Wednesday ~ allow radon mitigation installer into old home

Wednesday/Thursday (we hope) ~ close on old home

Doesn't look like much--until you consider the packing, the physical moving, the homes 40 miles apart, all the legal papers that need to get taken care of, the utilities that need to be addressed, the toddler and who watches her when, the finding of childcare in new community, the mom leaving Tuesday next week for a trip to see my sister, oh and the usual work of each week

All will be well. But good stress is still stress. So begins the marathon of the next few works. Sermons may be reworked from previous events.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


On the housing front:

We are progressing toward buying a home in our new community. The building inspector okayed it yesterday. We have to have our loan finalized by July 30. Closing to be end of August or before. Sale not contingent on sale of our home--in-laws will serve as our 'bridge loan' if need be.

One contingent offer on our home in old community. (They have an accepted offer on their home-contingent on the sale of another home). Possible other offer--hubby talking to that couple today. They made an offer, but we need another $4000 to make it comparable/doable. If they agree to our counter offer, those with the contingent offer have 72 hours to either back out or come up with the money to make it a non-contingent sale.

ETA: They did make the counter offer essentially, $3000 which we can make work. We'll draw up paperwork tonight, sign tomorrow. So, either the 72 hours will happen or that will. Unless the additional folks coming tonight make a better offer before we sign the papers--oh, that'd still give the contingent folks their 72 hours. I've called the bank to set up loan stuff; Hubby called our realtor to let her know that we want to get things going. Hubby thinks--oh, we can move the last week in July. Can we say VBS? I didn't tell him that; wouldn't matter if I did. I guess I'm like Martha in Sunday's text--worried and distracted by many things. I need to be a bit more like Mary today. Think that'll make it into the sermon--it just might. Except I'm concerned all people will hear is, "Pastor Silent is moving to our town" not anything else.

On the job front:

Hubby has a job interview for a much better job! About 15-20 minutes from our new community. That's in the morning. We thought he was a long shot for the interview, so this is promising. I so hope for him that he moves forward, though he seems not too confident. I wish I had more time with him tonight to help him prepare. I have meetings all evening.

Me--I'm doing okay. Wanted to have my sermon for this weekend done already; I know, it's only Tuesday, but I didn't preach last weekend, so I was hoping. I'm struggling with how to teach 100+ people (mostly adults) how to communicate and how to plan. No surprises, just not sure how to proceed.

On the home front:

Hubby is also working his summer job an hour away from home (not in the direction of the new community--the other way) where he lives in a hotel and is gone all the time. Except he's had to come home alot for housing things. mom is here. Still taking Baby Girl to daycare so as not to mess up her routine too much but mom is here to get her when I have evenings. It's mostly good; but it's going to be a long couple weeks.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010


I blog anonymously; it is my choice, my way of being my shy introvert self in this big internet world. It's my way of being private; a way to make it 'safer' for me to share deepest thoughts and feelings. Anyone who knows me in real life would have no trouble identifying me if they came across this blog. And I don't think I've said anything that would be deadly or career-threatening if found by a member of a congregation. I've said things I wouldn't necessarily want to be told--like when I was in the call process, etc. BUT I'm not blogging for anyone else but me. I'm not trying to start a conversation about what is wrong with a certain group and how it can improve.

I recently received a letter with the first entry of a blog and a blog address that does such a thing. Part of me really wanted to just trash the letter and go no further, but I decided to read the blog. And I find what irks me is that the poster's identity is 'Facilitator'--based on what 'Facilitator' writes, the higher ups in the organization that s/he says s/he has spoken with would know who it is. But the rest of us don't. Oh--and the kicker is that the stated goal relates to transparency. it just me or wouldn't somehow including your identity go a long way towards transparency?

Now I'm torn--part of me wants to comment (with my real name) on the blog and call him/her on that. But at the same time, I don't want to give the blog credibility. So...any suggestions?

Thursday, June 24, 2010

House Hunting

So today, hubby and I spent 3 hours looking at houses. We visited 10 homes--only saw 9. One we showed up and the people were there and told the realtor they had canceled. Oops. But we narrowed it down to 4; one we really, really like and the others with potential. The one that was my dream home months ago--well, it had serious water damage this spring. The realtor said there was no way she'd recommend buying it. With that, we can agree--it had a really nice main floor layout though. We didn't even look at more of the home, but since were spending the day looking I wanted to see inside.

Our house is now listed on our local for-sale-by-owner site. Two realtors have made contact with us about bringing their clients in to see it. That is awesome! (It just went up 2 days ago.) Using the MLS on our local realty site, there are virtually no other homes in the price range we are priced at now. (There are serious like 5 within a span of $50,000 and most of those are more 'in-town' while we are almost in the country.) We are hopeful. If we don't sell in 30 days (or sooner if we decide we need to move on our really, really like home), we will list with a realtor. That way it'll be better for us if we want to make an offer on a new home contigent on the sale of our current home. I am choosing not to worry until after we get home from our conference/vacation/time away this coming week. When we get home, we'll go from here.

If Baby Girl's sign about 'her room' was really a sign that that is our home (and it is still the one we really, really like), it'll still be on the market next week. If not, we'll go from there. I'm just glad it feel like progress.

Now--for at least one sermon. I meant to write last night, but I've been fighting a cold or something. I got into bed at 8:30 last night, just after Baby Girl. I was out by 9 and slept almost straight through until 6 when Baby Girl woke us up. I feel much better today; will feel even better when Sunday's sermon is done!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Crazy Busy

Life is crazy busy!!

We celebrated Baby Girl's second birthday on Memorial Day! She's such a big girl--Baby Girl doesn't so much fit any more. But it still does too--she's my precious angel, even as she asserts that she is indeed two and has the tantrums to prove it! Really, though, she's pretty laid back and not as 'terrible' as many other two year olds I've known. I cannot believe it's two years. She is still my heart. Next week, my hubby and I are headed south for a conference for me and an extra day just for us. We will be leaving her with her grandparents from Sunday morning until Thursday evening. That will be the longest I've ever been away from her--and the longest we've both been away from her at the same time. We have only both been away from her at the same time for one 24 hour stretch. I think it will be very hard on me. But I'm looking forward to the conference and time just with hubby!

This week, we have appointments for loan preapprovals and house hunts. We are listing our house on a 'for sale by owner' site--it should be up this afternoon. It's taking a bunch of my work week do do these meetings, but I'm ready to get this going! Pray for the house to sell quickly and for our house hunting... We went to an open house on Saturday and got the sign that it was time to move forward. We went to the upstairs of this house; Baby Girl went into the smallest bedroom (the one with pinkish walls), spun in circles and said, 'Baby Girl's room.' She loved the room next to it too (that one had a kid's table and chair set in it). So, while me might not end up in that house--it seemed like as good a sign as any to get us on the move. Or rather, a good sing for my hubby--I've been ready for some time!

Church is good--I'm loving the people and the place. Frustrations about some things, but things I anticipated to be frustrated about. So much could be written, but I need to write a sermon for this week (and hopefully start next week's so I don't have to do that away). I was hoping posting would get the writing juices flowing.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Is it cheating

if, during my 3rd sermon/4th Sunday at New Church, I use this (almost 4 minute) video as half of my sermon when it fits my setting so amazingly well?

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Radio Messages

There are some who would say that a certain song being played on the radio is a sign from God. I am not one of them. I don't believe that God will cause a dj to pick a certain song to play just because I need to hear it. I do, however, think that God can stir my heart so that I pay particular attention to a certain song.

This morning on my long drive to New Church, a song that I've come to love came on the radio. Some of the words are "I don’t wanna go through the motions I don’t wanna go one more day Without Your all consuming passion inside of me I don’t wanna spend my whole life asking What if I had given everything? Instead of going through the motions." This song had become somewhat of a mantra the last year (years?) at First Church. I felt like I was just shuffling along, doing what needed to be done, but it was mostly about going through the motions and I wanted to be giving and doing more, but not there. This morning, the song came on and I turned up the radio and all of a sudden it was quiet.

Hmm, I thought. And I turned the radio off and back on and then just decided to wait. I found out later that the tower had been struck by lightning which caused them to go off the air for a few minutes. And I really don't think God had lightning strike that tower just so I'd hear certain songs. But the words that came on mid-song when service resumed, "this is where the healing begins, this is where the healing begins."

I wasn't wounded, but I was disheartened. I was tired and 'going through the motions.' Now, I'm further along a path. I'm in a new place; I'm excited and looking forward. Thanks God--for this new place and for the songs.

Saturday, May 01, 2010

Day One

Today's my first day at my new church. I drove down this morning for a women's group--5 ladies and me. It was a much smaller day than my first day at First Church, but a good one. And someone/they had cleaned out my office. Yes, there is still a bookshelf full of things--many of which I'm not sure I want/need or even that they want/need. But it's tidy and clearly an effort was put into it and that means a lot! Small children even made 'welcome pastor' signs. It feels really nice. I will be installed tomorrow during worship and potluck welcome will follow. Then will begin the sharp learning curve!!

On the way home, I drove past First Church and my name was still on the sign. As long as we live here, I'm debating just watching to see when it comes down. (As opposed to emailing and saying--hey, my name's on the sign).

The rest of today is lots of work at home, hopefully going to get a haircut and getting ready for tomorrow and a new week. And a new schedule--Baby Girl will go to daycare 4 days a week--at least for now. I'm going to take Fridays off--because I finally can. Lots of driving will happen in the forseeable future. I need to get some books I think.

It's new and exciting--like many May 1sts have been for me. It's scary too, but in a good way. I just need to stay focused and grounded and not allow more worries than necessary to creep in. It'll be okay; it'll be good. As my CPE supervisor made me say to myself so often that I made a sign of it for my desk, "I am more competent than I think and more capable than I realize." Darn him for being right!

That and deep breaths and prayers and excited hugs and cuddles from Baby Girl when I get home will see me through.

Friday, April 30, 2010


I am home alone today--ALONE. I'm so very rarely home all by myself it feels very weird. I took Baby Girl to daycare as it is her usual day. I went to church and finished cleaning out my office and turned in my key. And I still forgot to look at the sign to see if they have taken my name off. I might just have to do that this afternoon to satisfy my curiosity.

I start at new church tomorrow--I really need pseudonyms. I have been invited to a women's gathering that is pretty early in the morning and I'm not sure I want to go. I even said that I didn't think I would, but I will. I was hoping to have the day home with hubby to keep working on our house. I guess it's more important that I start down there. I will go and then spend time starting to get my office in order. Unless the members went in this week, I have to clean up the stuff left by the interim. I realize that not everyone is as neat/spotless as me--at least when it comes to leaving places for other people, but I can dream.

It feels very odd to be done at the first church, maybe I'll call it that (First Church) as it was my first call. But new place--what to call it?

Anyway, it's just an odd place to be in--this in-between place. And not moving home yet and not even having a date on the horizon. When we moved here, we had our house for sale or maybe even sold with the closing set for the end of the month. Now we don't even have our house listed.

Hubby is looking for new job options for himself so he wants to hold off just a bit more as a different job would impact our home options and location needs, so.... However, I have this goal. We will be ready to take pictures for our on-line ad by Friday next week--a week from today. I'm going to take Fridays off in the new place, so it'll be my next day home. We may still have a few things to do--like clean closets, etc. we can take photos anyhow.

Wow--this was really boring. I thought I had more exciting thoughts. I guess I'm tired.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Frustrations in Moving, Part 2

House hunting--maybe? I found an awesome house on-line. From what I can tell on-line. I really really want to go see it, but we don't have ours ready to list yet. And, do we call a realtor we know? Especially since we are going to try to sell on our own. Or do we just call for an appointment? Or do we wait? Ugh.

I have too many books--too, too many. I am in the midst of boxing and packing and I have so many. I just want to be done packing my office!

And I'm packing to procrastinate the sermon writing. My final sermon here is this weekend. I have a one paragraph idea of what I want to say. It needs to be longer, but I just can't get into it. It will come--it always does.

Monday, April 05, 2010

Frustrations in Moving

Oh--there are many, and many more to be sure, but this is today....

MIL and FIL here to 'help'--brought with almost 3 year old nephew--who is getting along fairly well with almost 2 year old Baby Girl--but finding jobs for MIL to do is challenging. She wants to be helping but doesn't realize that occupying the kids is more help than having the tv babysit them while she tries to clean something

Trying to box somethings but leave enough that staging the house will be good. We want to get it on the market soon and start looking. So packing, but not packing everything. It's a challenge. We did decide to rent a storage unit today. Decided it was worth it compared to the hassle of sending things home with MIL/FIL to store for us.

And packing, packing, and stopping because all the boxes are in one of the two rooms where toddlers are now napping. Need to get something done but not sure what at this point--need help from Hubby but also know that he needs to be working on the garage's Easter, it's a new beginning, a new start...

My Easter sermon involved talking about playing peek-a-boo with Baby Girl...must remember her joyous smile!

Thursday, April 01, 2010

To Do Lists

My 'to do' list at my current congregation is getting shorter and shorter. It is feeling good to mark things off the list. The list doesn't include lots of things like packing up my office and turning over files, etc. but rather the tasks, the events, the sermons.

I'm trying not to start my 'to do' list for my new congregation too soon. But things are already creeping onto it.

And, don't get me started on the home to do list--yikes! Lots to do to get our house ready to sell; once we list it we can start doing serious house-hunting in the new town. It's not looking really great in our price range, but we'll manage.

Number one, however, on my list is the item I'm struggling with--Easter morning sermon. Have seriously been lacking sermon mojo here for some time; I was hopeful knowing change is coming would help. Not so far. I'll get there somehow; I always do. Just wish it felt more like a gift of the Spirit to have the opportunity to preach here and now and less like an item on my to do list.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

St. Patrick's Day

Okay--really not at all about St. Patrick's Day--just couldn't think of a better title. Tomorrow is the day that the letter goes in the mail and the church council finds out. Friday I'll be making some calls to some people that I think might want to hear directly from me. I'm nervous about this part even as I'm excited about the future. Prayers appreciated.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Expectations and Hopes

For now I will just say that things went as I hoped on Sunday. Now there are lots of expectations. I will write more soon.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010


Apparently we aren't the only ones who think our Baby Girl is a cutie. Last night we went to my stepdaughter's choir concert. As we waiting for the concert to begin, a little girl about 8 or so came over. "Excuse me, ma'am. Can I take a picture of your baby?" I said sure. She used a cell phone and took a picture. As she and her giggly friend walked away, she said, "We'll have to keep that one." It made me giggle. There were lots of other babies/toddlers there and Baby Girl was by far the cutest! :)

Friday, February 26, 2010

Inquiring Minds Want to Know

Okay--so 2 out of 3 readers want to know what's going on with me and a possible new call. And this is a lovely procrastination tool for the sermon that doesn't seem to want to get written for this weekend.

A congregation about 45 minutes from here will be voting whether or not to extend me a call on Sunday, March 7th. Their proposal for compensation was well below synod guidelines and even more below what I'm receiving in my current setting. (Because of insurance coverage costs.) My hubby and I met with them and proposed a middle ground--I took him with, it was ridiculous not to--we make financial decisions together and it would have delayed the process to have to talk to him before agreeing. So, I still would be making less than here/less than guidelines, but Baby Girl would have insurance coverage along with me and we think the 'quality of life' benefits would outweigh the cost. And Hubby could keep his job though we'd move closer to the new place. (He currently drives about 15-20 minutes in the direction of the new place from where we are now.) So, this tiny, struggling financially congregation will be voting on calling me AND a salary package bigger than they had budgeted for. So...we'll see.

And I'm okay because lots of things make it seem like it will happen, though it's by no means a done deal. And, if it doesn't happen, Hubby is committed to doing everything in his power to get a new job for himself to get me out of here!

So...there you have it. Now to the sermon for this weekend! Brilliant ideas on that are welcome! Somehow I've never preached on this particular Sunday of the church year, so I really have nothing.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Keeping My Mouth Shut

I am writing this because I need to keep my mouth shut.

I remember baptizing this little boy who died, marking his forehead with the sign of the cross. "Child of God, you have been sealed by the Holy Spirit and marked with the cross of Christ forever." I remember his bright blue eyes, the way he was one of the first children I ever made real eye contact with as they were baptized--believing, knowing, he looked into my eyes as I said these words to him. I remember when he was diagnosed and telling his mom that I didn't know what to say, but if there was anything I could do--come over and wash dishes even--I would. I read his website faithfully, trying to be connected when he did not get out of the house much and the family had supports beside us for actual visits. (Though we talked regularly with the parents.) I have felt more than once that I was to be here to do his funeral--most strongly felt that when I was discerning whether or not to move 2ish years ago.

And now, I will be involved in the funeral, but not preaching. And I began to question, was I really not the one who poured the baptismal waters? Am I thinking of the wrong little boy? But my pastoral reports indeed say that I presided at this baptism. According to senior pastor, he's preaching because he presided at the baptism. And I wonder--did that come from him or the family? If they remember him, fine. But if he doesn't remember....

I obviously would never say something to the family. Losing your 6 year old son is more than enough grief. I want to say something to senior pastor, but what good would it do? So, I'm keeping my mouth shut. I will do my best at the funeral and I will do my best to love the family.

God claimed this little boy in the waters anyway--I was just the hands; it could have be any hands. And now God has claimed this little boy again--for all eternity. I've got to get out of the way.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Not about me, but about me

So...I am hopefully done playing nurse to my family. Hubby is on the mend--feels good today. Sees eye doctor tomorrow. Baby Girl was her full, happy, bubbly, perky self this morning. She see's doc on Friday just to be sure.

I need desperately to get my sermon for tomorrow written, but just got a sad phone call (for lack of a better word). A little boy was just admitted to a hospice house this morning--he has outlived his diagnosis for much longer than any of us expected. My heart aches for this family--this little boy whose forehead I marked with the sign of the cross on his baptismal day just over 6 years ago.

A few years ago, I thought I was going to move, but had this nagging feeling that I was supposed to stay until I did his funeral. Well--I didn't move then--for lots of reasons. And now--in just a few weeks, a different congregation will be voting to extend me a call. (It's by no means definite; money is a huge factor but that's another post.) If they do call me, it'll be a few months yet before moving. Just recently I said to my hubby, I haven't thought about this boy's funeral for some time. But today, I wonder. Is this what I am here for?

Friday, February 12, 2010

So What's Next?

A toddler with a double ear infection.

And raspy chest so on medicine for that too so that it doesn't turn to pneumonia.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010


So my iphone wouldn't cooperate with attempt #1--which would not have been complete because that was Sunday morning.

Blogger/my computer ate attempt #2.

Here's #3...

Seriously, how much more can we take?

I spent from 3 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Sunday morning with my hubby in the ER
(Add this to the list of why I'm glad I'm an associate for now--my role for Sunday morning services was to lead worship/preside--senior could manage on his own quite nicely)

He is 'a freak of nature'--the doctor's term, really. Apparently people don't have 2 kidney stones (1 in each kidney) at the same time--at least very often.

Saw the urologist Monday a.m., which ended up involving a 'procedure'--code for knocking hubby out and putting stents in each tube from each kidney to bladder. Stones broke up with the scope so they should just pass, stents will be removed next week. But now there is pain from the procedure--mostly just when he pees, but also some pain from the stents being put in.

The good news, seriously, in all of this is that my mom was in town, so Baby Girl did not have to go with to either. She was able to stay asleep in her bed and then have someone who loved her and know her routine to wake up to. She's confused, we can tell. But she is loved. And it made 7 hours in the ER and hours in the waiting room at the surgery center much more bearable knowing whose hands she was in.

Add to this a waiting game for me about something potentially significant and I'm fried. Trying very hard to finish Sunday's sermon today so I can start on Ash Wednesday tomorrow. Yucky weather here, so at least when I go home this early afternoon I do not have to come back out for a meeting I was supposed to have. That's something at least.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Can we go back to 2009?

2010 is off to an officially crappy start. I've avoided writing about some of it because it seemed like it would 'out' me, but really if anyone knows me, the last post already did. I've told on Baby Girl a lot. What can I say, she is the bright light of every day! Sometimes the only light.

So here's the year so far:

January 1-2 ~ No big deal. Hubby, Baby Girl, and I went out for a really early dinner on December 31 and then came home and settled in for the night. She went to bed at her normal time (7:30/8 p.m.) and we watched the ball drop in New York (so 11 p.m. our time) and went to sleep. The days were home and uneventful.

January 3 ~ Morning worship--not a big deal, except upon leaving from colleague. "Oh, did so-and-so talk to you? They want to come see you on Tuesday." Leaving me with guesses but unsure about topic.

January 5 ~ First day back in the office after a week off. So-and-so calls to set up appointment, colleague does give me a bit of history about what topic will be. Meet with him--blog later (the sermon I want to write versus the sermon I need to write.)

January 7 ~ 6 p.m. Short version -- Hubby gets hit in the eye with a flying rock. Serious injury. Crappy weather. Friend takes us all (including Baby Girl) to emergency room. Arrive home 10 p.m. after two ERs due to stupid hospital system

January 8 ~ Crappy weather, friend takes hubby to eye doc so as to disturb Baby Girl less, hubby to be on at least 5 days of bed rest, pills, and numerous drops. Frantically arrange care for girl for Saturday evening worship and Sunday morning. Oh yeah, and try to finish sermon.

January 9 ~ a.m. visit doc, eye looking good

January 10 ~ 2 a.m. hubby wakes me up in severe eye pain and seeing (or not as the case may be) as he did right after rock, 6 a.m. call senior pastor and give him two options--I don't come to worship/important Sunday School event I'm part of or his wife takes hubby to eye doc when he calls. senior pastor goes with option 2. Rebleed--really, really bad for eye--increase drugs and bed rest

January 10 ~ 8:30 a.m. with Baby Girl go get oil changed, p.m. in-laws arrive and I take hubby to doctor

rest of the week ~ someone takes hubby to doctor every day, either FIL, me or both ~ I try to work and try to maintain some sense of normalcy in my home and with Baby Girl

January 17 ~ morning between services--pre-annual meeting meeting that I don't attend because it could get ugly regarding me and colleague, in-laws leave so FIL can have hernia surgery on Monday, hubby's eye improving

January 20 ~ ice storm, but get hubby to eye doc before it's bad to hear things are looking good--eliminate pills, keep drops, no need to see doc again until Wednesday

January 21 ~ a.m. hubby sees retina specialist, can't see retina as well as would like so needs to come back Monday, still really icy--don't want to have friend come out to watch Baby Girl so I can attend potentially horrid council meeting while hubby (who can finally drive) can go to older daughter's 7 p.m. recital, 5 p.m. hubby finds out that recital is at 6 p.m. an hour away--franctically prepares to go and take Baby Girl with, 9 p.m. I arrive home not long after them, 10 p.m. go to sleep, 11:30 p.m. woken up by hubby saying something about "kidney beans"--he's in severe pain--we do online research, call doctors, etc. --self-diagnose kidney stones, he's in bad shape

January 22 ~ 1 a.m. head to ER, loading up Baby Girl from sleeping--she stays asleep through move and all the way to the ER, wakes up then--about 2 a.m. is awake until 4 a.m. in the ER, hubby is definitively diagnosed with kidney stone, given loads of pain meds and sent home, 3:45 Baby Girl starts to melt down tremendously, I want to cry (she really was a trooper through it all--she's such a good, happy girl, we are so lucky!), 4:30 a.m. arrive home, sleeping Baby Girl stays asleep for transfer back to bed, 5 a.m. I curl up to sleep, 6:30 a.m. Baby Girl awake and ready to go! Hubby snoring away from all the heavy duty pain meds, I manage to get Baby Girl to watch some tv so I can doze until 7:30 a.m., 7:45 a.m. wake up hubby to watch her while I shower, 8 a.m. leave to take Baby Girl to daycare and head to pick up prescriptions for hubby, taken those home, 9:30 a.m. arrive in office--spend day (with exception of one home communion visit) trying to stay awake and write sermon for this weekend--which is annual meeting and potentially hurtful and the texts are about being the church (as I read them)--there seems to be a lot at stake.

Oh--and no time for this, but hubby has new job, don't know how many sick days he really has nor what his insurance covers; he had to buy insurance at this job and he's never sick, so I don't know which one he picked. We've seen no bills yet, but cannot be good.

I want to go back to 2009. 2010 is not off to a good start.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


This morning, Baby Girl was playing with crayons, which I took away when she started saying, 'icky' and I noticed red chunks around her mouth. (She has been told repeatedly not to eat crayons and also had them taken away for doing so.) I put them away in a different spot than usual and she saw that. She cried a bit, but got over it. We played and she said goodbye to me as usual--with hugs, kisses, waves, etc. I left for work about 8:15 a.m.

When I came home around 3 p.m., she didn't come running like usual. I came in and said, "where's my girl?" She looked at me, pointed, and said "crayons." I replied, "can I have a hug?" She looked at me, pointed, and said "crayons." I went over to her to try to hug her; "crayons," she said. I encouraged her to ask nicely (i.e. saying please) which she did. Then I gave back her crayons, asked for a hug and she happily obliged.

That girl forgets nothing! But obviously can hold a grudge, but not forever. I usually rock her to drowsy and then put her in her crib. Tonight, she wanted to be held until asleep. I would try to move her and she'd say, "NO" and push me back in the chair. She was quite content to snuggle. She makes me so happy. I still can't believe how much I love her!

Thursday, January 07, 2010

The Sermon I Want to Write vs. the Sermon I Need to Write

So, the lectionary is a good thing, yes? I knew this week was Baptism of Our Lord for a long time, knowing I'd be preaching. I hadn't looked at the texts closely prior to Tuesday morning. When Isaiah's/God's words struck me the most. "I have called you by name, you are mine." (The text is Isaiah 43:1-7.) And others..."you are precious in my sight; I love you." Words that most of us need to hear more often than we do. I read these on Tuesday morning, just after having been given a heads-up that I was going to have someone come in to talk to me in the afternoon as a follow-up to an evaluation given 2 plus years ago. The story is much more drawn out than I have in me. The conversation went well, but here are the highlights. I don't talk about myself enough in my sermons. (Really--I was taught that sermons should be about, I don't know, GOD.) I am not 'friendly' enough in the narthex before/after services. (Really--when you rush to put your coat on or make a closed circle to talk with your friends, I'm not going to interrupt you unless I have something more specific than good morning to say.) I've been here nearly 7 years; these aren't new things...but I can only change so much. Especially when I found out this follow-up (so late) is because a handful of people thought that they should 'eliminate the position' for 2010. At least council said, "no--if this was part of the evaluation 2 years ago, we need to follow up on it rather than having done nothing than told her that 2 years ago...and we don't agree on the step of eliminating the position."

Anyway, Tuesday night/Wednesday morning at 1 a.m. Baby Girl wakes up. I listen to her whine/moan/cry through the moniter about 15 minutes and then go hold her, rocking her for 1/2 hour before she settles down. Just long enough to be fully awake and hear the words echoing in my head that I'm not good enough. (And continuing to echo for at least an hour more after I get back in my bed.) I never have been and never will be. The good news is that I also had the words of Isaiah/God echoing around in there. "You are precious in my sight and I love you. I created you. You are mine."

So the sermon I want to write is basically this..."You want to hear more about me. How about this? I'm a shy quiet introvert who wants you to learn about me by taking time to talk to me, not by sharing stories from the pulpit. From here, I want you to hear about God. But today, how about this? In my life, I've hardly ever felt good enough...and Tuesday I was told I wasn't good enough to be here, to be standing before you. So I spent hours awake with that echoing in my head. The good news is that I had God's voice too--and too bad for you, that's the one I'm going to listen to. If I'm not good enough for you, fine. I am God's beloved and I am doing the best I can to be who God made me--and it's not by telling stories about myself or about shaking more hands after worship."

And the sermon I need to write is not quite the same....It will be about all of us needing to hear Isaiah's/God's words echoing in our minds. I just first have to get through the sermon I want to write and to hear the sermon I need to hear in order to get to the sermon they need to hear.