Thursday, January 12, 2012


Or, possibly just some asked questions:

Q:  Where did you get the name Dean?  (OR, why didn't you use another M name?)
A:  Dean Mark was the name we had chosen if Mia had been a boy.  And if Micah had been a boy.  So, it's been around for awhile.  The middle name is obvious.  Dean came from a good friend of the family that passed away a few years ago.  You see, Mark's grandfathers both passed away when he was quite young and he doesn't remember them.  Dean was the guy that filled in those roles.  He was the guy that was with Mark when he shot his first deer.  He was the one that liked to tease and have fun with him.  He was a fantastically wonderful man.  We miss him.

Q:  How is it having a boy?
A:  It's great.  We feel more than blessed.  So far, other than the obvious fast diaper changes, it hasn't been too different.  Dean is quite the flexible, happy baby, but I think that's more to do with his third child status than being a boy.

Q:  How is Austin?  What are you doing there?
A:  Austin is wonderful.  We are so thankful God has brought us here.  We are working on God's team to bring God's name to Austin.  Starting in our neighborhoods first.  We are trying to meet all our neighbors and form  relationships as well as enjoy our missional community.  A missional community is a group of people intentionally living life together in order to know Jesus and make him known.  It's loving each other as Jesus would have us so that others will see His love.  We feel blessed to be partnered with God in this.

Q:  What does M(4) + D equal?
A:  I pray that it equals a family seeking to make God's name great.  I pray it equals love, obedience, service, and determination.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


August 1st started out in a rush.  I woke up early and quickly realized something felt really weird.  In my groggy state, I stumbled to the kitchen, made coffee and started a roast in the crockpot before I realized what was different:

I was having contractions.  Coming 5 minutes apart. 

They weren't very strong.  They didn't last very long.  But because I wanted a vbac, I knew my doctor wanted me at the hospital when my contractions reached 5 minutes apart.  So, I timed.  And they remained.  I took a shower.  And they remained.  I called the doctor and he said to come in.  And they remained.  I called our sweet friend, Hope.  And they remained.

We headed to the hospital and... well, they spaced out.  About 15 minutes apart.  We checked in to the hospital anyway since they were expecting us and for the next few hours they remained at 15 minutes apart. 

Wherein I cried and asked to be sent home, since I was barrelling toward another c-section.

My sweet sister and niece were almost to our house anyway, so they decided to come for a visit.  So they played with and watched the girls while I tried to rest and nap -- all the while contracting every 15 minutes.  We played.  We ate.  We laughed.  We went to Amy's Ice Cream.  And watched Food Network.  It was a fantastic time with some of my favorite people.  It would have been even better if those annoying contractions wouldn't have kept coming, especially since they kept getting stronger. 

We went to bed much too late, but we didn't want to leave the fun.  Mark joked that my water would break around midnight.  I told him he was mean and fell asleep.

Until 11:50pm. When I leapt from the bed as fast as a 9-months pregnant lady can leap. 

My water broke. 

Mark is some kind of prophet. 

Doctors were called.  Sisters were informed.  And the road to the hospital was driven again.  Where this time I would check in to stay and finally meet my little man.

I met the absolute best labor and delivery nurse in the entire world.  And saw the on-call doctor again (my doc had the night off).  They were both very encouraging when it came to the vbac.  And the natural birth I hoped to have.  They let me roam the halls and walk and move around as much as possible.  They completely made the experience.  After praying for months for a great L&D nurse, it was amazing to see God's answered prayers. 

The labor experience was tough.  But God is good.  Mark was amazing.  We prayed together and he read scripture over me.  He encouraged me and didn't let me quit even when things got hard.  It was such a sweet time of proclaiming that I needed God to get through the pain.  And I needed Mark, my God-given husband, to support, protect, and love me.  For such an independent and self-sufficient person like me, it was humbling and a huge learning experience.  I wouldn't trade it.

My mom came in around 9.5 centimeters.  She jumped right in and helped me through the last bit.  She was amazing.  And then it was time...

The doctors and nurses let me take control.  It was the coolest experience to feel my son being born.  And then he was there.  And he was healthy.  And he was ours. And my first words were "Thank you, Jesus."

Dean Mark born 8/2/11 at 6:26am.  He was 7lbs 9oz and 21inches.

He got to hang out on my chest for almost an hour. It was easily one of the best experiences of my life.