Grandma's Garden

I've had quite a few people reach out to me, sharing their stories, their strength and their bravery, and I am so grateful.  When it comes to the future, I am scared.  I am nervous.  I am doubting my ability to raise these three boys well without the constant presence of their father.  But everyone keeps telling me I can do it; reminding me of my strength and encouraging me to be brave.  I did it before, and I can do it again.

This quote is my new favorite for when I think of life four weeks from now:

"So, here I am telling you to HANG IN THERE!

You can do this-- whatever it is you are going through.

Even if you can't control your situation, you can control your thoughts,

your actions, your smiles, your laughter, and how you deal with your trials."

-Stephanie Nielson

Being apart may not be the best situation, but I can make the best of the situation.  I have our homeschool curriculum ordered, plans already in place to start chore charts and allowance for the kids, as well as high hopes for Josh's many trips home.

I should find out what we're having in September (eek!), which will give me something to look forward to.  And I have made the decision to stay with my in-laws instead of finding our own place. A big backyard for the boys to play in was tempting, but when they all got sick yesterday, and I saw what a nightmare dealing with that by myself would be, I felt instantly humbled and grateful that they would be willing to let us stay.  I prayed a lot about the decision, balancing the idea of our own space with what the kids will need, and the answer came loud and clear last night.  While navigating relationships and sharing space is not easy, those boys are going to need all the loving they can get, and you just can't beat a grandma's love.  Josh's mom was overjoyed at our decision to stay, and we are both looking forward to the fall, when we can settle into a routine after the chaos of summer.

We had our first prenatal appointment today, and got to hear Babyham's heartbeat.  What a sweet sound that is.  I am twelve weeks now which is exciting, and we found out that my c-section will most likely be scheduled for 39 weeks.  I was glad to nail that down so that Josh can schedule his flight home and (fingers crossed!) not miss it!  I will have a third c-section because after one failed VBAC I am once burned, twice shy!

All in all I am doing well.  I know that it will be hard (so hard) when Josh is in Alaska.  I will miss him... the boys will miss him... he will miss us...  But I also know that we can do hard things.  And if this is what it takes to get Baby #4 here safely, then I am willing to do it. 

"May your choices reflect your hopes,
not your fears."
-Nelson Mandela


{Photos courtesy of Carol's garden}


Ashley B said...

You have been in my prayers, Shelly!
I had a similar experience with separation back when I was pregnant with Sophie. Mark was working three hours away and we only saw him late Friday night to Sunday at lunch. The rest of the time, he was gone and I was on my own! It was hard and I missed him so much (you don't really realize how much you depend on someone until he's gone!), but we kept our days full and that somehow distracted us and got us through. So wonderful that you'll have family to help too!

Tabitha Studer said...

ditto on keeping you in my prayers, Shelly. I am so happy and excited for you and the boys that you'll be surrounded by extended family this coming year, and also heartsick that you and Josh will be apart for long periods. Brandon and I were long distance for six years! (albeit unmarried and without kids at that point, so really no comparison). This year will definitely one that you look back on someday and think, 'remember what we did for our family? remember how hard and crazy that was but also that we did it and it was for them.' love you guys xxoxo you are amazing.

ps. those pictures of flowers are incredible!