Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Contentment is a bautiful thing

This is something I've been thinking about for a while and recently our Pastor talked about it at church.
Before I share about the title I want to say that I know this blog has been mainly about our struggles with babies and what we've been through can make for a very sad blog. I'm not saying this apologetically because even though I have no official followers (that I know of) my desire is that if and when people find my corner of the blogosphere God will use our story to encourage others no matter where they are at in live (as He's used others in my life), because all this pain can't go to waist!
Having said this I feel we are entering a different chapter in our story. It's almost like I can feel it in the air and I think I need to share accordingly. The blogs I follow are mostly of women that although they have lots to offer in many areas the main thing they offer is transparency and that is what has blessed me the most. I am not a perfect Jesus-lover, wife, housewife, mother, crafter, or woman but I belive that sharing with transparency helps us live the life in community God intended for His followers.



A state of happiness and satisfaction.

It's been an interesting journey which has helped me (us) put things in perspective and realize what is truly important. We all have dreams, we all want a good life, a big house with a yard, a paid off mortgage, two cars, a good pay check, a good job, more money, and better things. I don't think there is anything wrong with this desires but I do believe the world we live in has put all material things in the center of our lives and maybe without noticing we have allowed it.
Not too long ago I was not very content with where we are at. I was failing to count our blessings and I was focusing on what I wanted for the future more than all that I have NOW. I just wanted more. So I decided to make some changes. We live in a small two bedroom apartment. We've had a spare bethroom for the past two years so it's been really easy to bring things home and if we don't use them just put them in the storage room spare room. Growing up I remeber we had one of those, one day my mom decided it was time to clean it. It took weeks to go over everything in there! I have a vivid memory of a box that had been sitting there for years and when we opened it there was a pot with dirt in a bag, you never know when you'll need it right? Ever since my biggest fear has been to accumulate so much stuff that I won't even know what I have.
Every time we've moved in the last few years I've made it a point to get rid of anything that isn't been used but somehow I kept buying things that I didn't know where to put! It's amazing how fast a spare room can get out of control. Anyway, after Evan's birth I decided to organize every corner of our house and get rid of anything that wasn't been used (I needed a project). That unfolded a series of unexpected events.
As I cleaned and organized the house felt more and more my own. I realized we really didn't NEED anything and we have more than we NEED. One day I stood in the middle of the living room looking around and thought "I am happy here, this is my home". We had been trying to buy a house but we decided that's not the right move right now and since we decided that I embraced my home and took it upon myself to make the best out of it! This has led me to fing the best way to use what we already have to decorate, come up with inexpensive ways to create more storage space, fill our house with pretty plants and flowers, and only shop for what we truly need or has a specific purpose. I have also been focusing my energy on serving my husband. Cooking more often, keeping a cleaner house, eating dinner at the table, etc.
I cannot tell you how much this change in my perspective has impacted our lives. How good it has been for our marriage, we are happier now than when I was working full time and had more money. We have learned what contentment really is and it is a beautiful thing!
Stick around as I share my projects, my kitchen adventures, and the valuable lessons I've learned from my good friend and mentor S on saving money and living fully.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Our VERY Happy Valentine's Day

Yesterday was a VERY special day. Valentine's is normally not a huge day for us, I mean we do try to have a special dinner or get a little something for each other but it's just not big like Christmas or birthdays. Anyway, yesterday was different, it was a day we both had been looking forward to for about a month. As I said before it was the day after I passed the 20 week mark and when we had an ultrasound scheduled to find out if we're having a little boy or a little lady!
Before I make the big announcement I want to recap our day just because this is sort of our family's diary. If you can't wait or just don't want to read the whole thing feel free to scroll down and enjoy the news!
The day started at about 7:30am maybe earlier. I've been having trouble sleeping so I was up at 6:30 a few minutes later my Valentine got up and left the room so I turned on the movie I didn't finish watching the night before (Ocean's 13, can I just say I love those movies). Bruce came back to the room with a plate of strawberries and Nutella which is my favorite thing on earth right now. All I've been eating for breakfast the past month or so is this delicious idea I found on Pinterest:
Source here
Before you judge me I'm aware it's not the healthiest ever but I use whole grain bread, and I like to tell myself that baby needs carbs (bread), fat (nutella), protein (eggs), and fruit (strawberries) so if you think about it is a pretty balanced breakfast right? rigth? ok maybe not but I LOVE IT!
Anyway, he brought the french toast later with a huge Valentine's balloon
He left the room again and came back with a bottle of chocolate milk. This was sognificant because when we met in Brazil and then were in Chile togehter that's how he would let me know he had been thinking of me!
He left the room one more time and returned with this gorgeous orchid that makes me smile every time I look at it!:
After the movie it was time to get ready and get to our appointment. If you've read some of our story you know that our biggest concern wasn't the sex of our baby but what could be wrong. All kinds of worrisome thoughts crossed our minds during the days leading to yesterday, however when we went into the ultrasound room there was peace.
Bruce was convinced it's a girl and I wanted a boy... are you ready for the news. Let me say first that all of our concerns and worries were cleared. Every organ looks good and is working in perfect order. The heart is perfect and beating at 147 bpm. All the measurements are what they are supposed to beand our due date of July 3rd was confirmed! Are you ready now?
Ok without further ado I give you the big announcement:

Yes, Mr. Evan Matthew is having a baby brother!

For our Spanish speaking family!

We are beyond excited for our little man! I am thankful that God heard and gave me the desire of my heart and I am thrilled that in a few months I will be holding my dear son on this side of Heaven! After the appointment the news were of setting in. The news that we're having a boy, that he's healthy, that we will actually be holding a living baby very soon, that ou life is about to change even more for real! For the first time in a very long time we felt free to be excited, to plan, to talk about the future, to shop for baby, and to get ready for what is coming! It was so liberating and even today sharing the news with our friends and family the day was bright and beautiful.
What a wonderful Valentine's Day, it is one that will be hard to top but I don't have a problem with that and I'm sure Bruce doesn't either!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Review and announcement

Time flew by and just like that 2012 was over then I blinked and February was here. I know this is not the most timely picture but this is how we made the announcement to our friends and family. It also is sort of our 2012 in review, certainly other things happened during the year or did they? It really doesn't feel like it, I mean they must have but when something such as a precious Evan and a new addition happen to you in the same year I don't think you notice much more, I didn't.
When we sent this to our friends and family some didn't quite get it so I'll clarify:
The picture on the left with the three hands is our hands holding our Evan's little one and the ultrasound is the sweet new member of the Coy family! Isn't he PERFECT?
We are 19 weeks and looking forward to Valentine's Day which is the day after we pass the 20 week mark and the day they scheduled my ultrasound when besides seeing our little one again we get to find out if it's a little man or a sweet lady. It cannot come fast enough, update to follow!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Evan's birth story

Ever since I discovered the blogosphere I've read several birth stories and always wondered how mine would be. For a while and because I don't have a living child to account for it I never even gave writing Evan's birth story a second thought, till now.

It doesn't matter that he's not here with us he will always be the first child I gave birth to and I will always want to remember what a special moment it was and how God was present even in the midst of the most difficult thing I've ever had to do. So here it goes.

Contractions started on Wednesday May 23rd at around 8:30 pm. As I've said before I wish I remembered exactly when was the last time I felt him move but I don't. I know it was sometime between Monday at 3 pm (that was the last time we saw him on an ultrasound, he seemed so peaceful and happy just moving around mamma's belly) and Wednesday morning. Anyway, contractions started and as a first time mom I wasn't sure whether I was in labor or not. I kept praying that wasn't it. I googled and googled but I still wasn't sure. I was up all night. I walked, I sat, I folded baby clothes, I prayed. 

On Thursday at around 7 in the morning Bruce woke up and told me to call the nurse. I called, told her what was going on and she told us to drive to the hospital, I was not quite there but close. We got to the hospital and they kept asking if I was feeling Evan move, I thought I was so I kept saying yes, now I know that what I was feeling were only contractions, the mind is a powerful thing. They connected me to the monitor, contractions where regular and strong, very different from any pain I've experienced before. Then the monitor to listen to his heart, the nurse searched and searched but we kept hearing it, that piercing silence, the loudest most deafening silence I've ever heard. The nurse announced it "I'm sorry, but I think your baby passed away". What? This couldn't be happening. We held each other and cried. What are we supposed to do now? We had called my friend/adoptive mom/birth coach Sharon and she was on stand by, after the final verdict the nurse offered to call her. She was on her way. Meanwhile we called my parents, they were on their way form Mexico City. 

Sharon got to the hospital I will never be able to thank her for everything she was for us that day. She hugged me, cried with me and then was all the strong and sound of mind we couldn't be. You see she is a nurse so she has medical training but more than that she has delivered 7 kids, so if anyone has the experience I needed to go through this was her. They offer pain meds and with confidence she looked at me and said "I think we can do it without them, I'll be there, we'll do it together!". I didn't know what it was to deliver a baby but she sort of transferred her confidence to me.

They did an ultrasound to verify that our Evan was no longer with us, we saw his still body on the screen. We cried some more. The next step was to move us to a delivery room, to check my progress and see where we were in the labor process. When we were settled in our room they checked me, I was 3 cm. Contractions kept on going. They gave me a pill to dilate the cervix, it was going to take about 3 hours to get to 10 cm. I was exhausted but the contractions wouldn't let me sleep.

My friends Leslie and Melanie where there. William showed up. It was awesome to have so many familiar faces with us and know that we were not alone. I heard that throughout the day many friends were at the hospital some came in, some stayed out and prayed, some called, texted or e-mailed. I am grateful for every single one of them.

I took a shower and the contractions continued. Bruce has on one side of the bed and Sharon was on the other. Every contraction they would both hold my hand. My Bruce was the loving, sympathetic, tender support I needed. I would look at him and be comforted in his love and in the peace of having him right there going through it all with me, if not through the physical pain the devastation of having lost our beloved son. Sharon on the other hand was my strong, practical, always loving but firm coach. No matter what was going on around us or who was talking with one look I would let her know a contraction was coming she would focus her eyes on mine and breathe with me. Very calmly but firmly she would ask me to keep my eyes opened, look at her, relax and breathe. Breathing helped a lot, relaxing was hard I was trying to go against every fiber of my body that would want to tense up but when I was able to it helped a lot too.

About half an hour into it they came to check, I had progressed to 5 cm. At some point after that I got nauseated and threw up. They gave me some medicine for that and we kept going. Contractions became more regular and stronger. Melanie was monitoring and she said they were coming every 2 mins exactly. It felt like a lot less. I was so tired I started sleeping between contractions. A contractions would come, I would focus on Sharon, get through it and fall deep asleep, the next contraction would wake me up and it would start all over again. What I remember being the hardest is when in the middle of a contraction what was  going on became very clear. I would think "My baby is death, I'm giving birth to the still body of my baby boy, I can't do this, this is too hard!". Talk about pain! I remember even saying it out loud but Bruce and Sharon pulled me through, "You can do it, you are strong, I know it hurts but you need to do it!". 

They checked me again and I was at 7 or 8 cm. Sharon said I would soon enter into transition ans shortly after it would be over. Not too long after they checked me that last time I started having the urge to push but I wasn't supposed to. Sharon sent for the doctor, she said I was in transition. Every cell of my body was telling me to push and yet I had to fight against it. If you ask me I think that is the hardest part of delivering, thankfully it didn't last long. Finally the doctor arrived he checked again, I remember yelling "I'm going to push!" and I heard the best words I could have heard anyone say at the moment, "Ok, push!". Oh the relieve! After that it was like my body knew what to do and by listening to it I did to. When a pushing contraction was coming I would count "1,2,3" and I would push. It took about three pushes and Evan was out. It was pain like any other, it burnt and then it was all over. 

They took Evan to clean him and wrap him. Shortly after they handed him to me, he was the most beautiful baby boy I've laid eyes on. The doctors and nurses stood back in perfect silence and utter respect of the moment we were living. His body was far from perfect but he is oh so precious to his mom and dad. We spent two unforgettable hours with our Evan. We had pizza dinner with friends in the room. I was feeling surprisingly well. They moved us to another room and I was finally able to rest some while Bruce and Sharon went to the airport to pick up my parents. When they came back we asked the nurse to bring Evan back to the room. Abuelos got to hold him and meet him. William held him too. It was a beautiful family time that God gifted us with and that I am very thankful for.