Do not be afraid my friends! This post is not about Justin Bieber or his 3D MTV biography. Throughout our lives there are always the things that we claim we will never do. Typically these claims we make are followed by the infamous saying we have all heard, “Never Say Never”. As I have reflected upon my life during the past week, I remembered a few of the things I said I would never do. These memories make me extremely grateful for The Lord’s sense of humor, unending love, and amazing grace.
(Prior to meeting Andrew) “There is no way I will get married right outside of college.”
“I won’t be the girl that has babies only three months after being married.”
“Stay at home Mom? At 22? NEVER.”
“I will never live to see the day that Duke football is ranked in the TOP 25.”
“My husband will never become apathetic about NC State Athletics.”
“My heart will never reside in Chapel Hill.”
Okay, so the last three are just for kicks and giggles! During my [hormonal, overly sentimental, postpartum] reflection, I remembered a scripture verse my Aunt Emily wrote in a card to me on my first day of high school. “In his heart a man plans his course, but The Lord determines his steps.” Proverbs 16:9 This verse made me smile as I reflected on the steps The Lord has used to guide me to where He is calling me to be as a wife and mother. As I confessed to you about the things I thought would never happen, I have yet to share with you how grateful I am that they all did.
My “never say never” claims were not due to the fact that I was ever anxious about marriage or motherhood. They were simply because I did not believe it would ever happen this way. I have learned that it doesn’t matter how you plan it. It doesn’t matter how you envision it. Without even knowing it, sometimes life has a way of finding you with exactly what you need, or exactly who you need.
This past week has been absolutely amazing. A week ago today I was in recovery after having an emergency C-Section and our sweet blessings were being delivered 11 weeks early. In their first week of life, God has blessed Andrew and I beyond our own imagination. As their parents, we are so grateful for the tiny miracles we call our daughters. Two years ago, I thought Andrew and I fell in love with each other fast– whew, there is nothing like the immediate unconditional love you feel for your children. When I saw Amelia and Leah for the first time last Tuesday morning, my heart was immediately full of compassion and unconditional love for my girls. As their mother it is not easy to see them with so many “accessories” and so tiny, but I know that the same almighty God who protected my girls in the womb is the same God who will be their Ultimate Healer. He is the same God who determined my steps.
The girls are both doing awesome for their gestational age! They are one week old today! It is hard to believe a week has already passed us by in the NICU. As they acted in the womb, we were correct in saying we have one of each. Leah is definitely her Mama, and Amelia is her Daddy– from the way they sleep to many others things that show their individual personalities! Amelia had an echo-cardiogram this morning, and the cardiologist report showed that along with the VSD she has a PDA. This is a premature condition in which Amelia’s ductus arteriosus is open. Our sweet girl is not able to close it on her own, so we started her on some “baby ibuprofen” basically to help her along! Leah has FINALLY pooped! Yes, over the past few days we have been praying for a bowel movement. Oh, how things change when you have children! The girls are still on the Bubble CPAP– but no ventilators!! PTL! The Bubble CPAP is not breathing for them, but is helping them by putting pressure on their little, tiny lungs. Since the girls are still extremely young, their brains aren’t as developed as full term babies. Therefore, they have apnea spells where they forget to breathe– heart rates go down and all we have to do is jiggle them a little bit! Our nurses have been very encouraging in saying the girls look really healthy for their age. Despite being born prematurely, the girls are very healthy and overall doing awesome!
I was discharged on Friday, and have been anxious to spend every minute in Chapel Hill. I am recovering well from the surgery, but am being reminded to take care of myself. It is hard to remember that I went through surgery too! Andrew went back to work today, but we are so thankful for Chick-fil-A and how understanding they have been in the past week! We spent all week last week together with our girls and I fell more in love with my husband. I am telling y’all, he is seriously the best Daddy and the most loving husband. I truly believe last week made our marriage stronger! For everyone that has reached out to us in the past week and during my admission through prayers, messages, texts/ phone calls, cards, flowers, gifts– and everything in between– THANK YOU! We have been overwhelmed with the amount of support we have received from so many people. Andrew and I put together a video for all of you who have followed in our story of the girls first week! We have so many pictures between the two of us that this would have been the longest blog post ever. So, enjoy!
My friends, sometimes the things you say you will never do will find you. Do not fear them or run away because you have a set plan. These “never say never” claims can sometimes be life’s greatest blessings– meet our two.
Amelia Grace, 11/11/2013, 4:26 pm
Leah Katherine, 11/11/13, 4:25 pm
Remember how the ole’ saying goes, never say never–