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I am four weeks away from meeting my second child! It’s an amazing feeling knowing that we are so close, especially since this was a very long journey. With both of our boys we were not the lucky ones to conceive quickly. The first time around it took us seven months to get pregnant, while that is certainly not long compared to some people’s journeys it definitely is longer than we expected for being young and healthy. Little did we know that I had Lupus and it was playing a factor into me getting pregnant. This time around we were aware that it might take a while. But, I will say even though I thought it would take a while I did not expect it being a two-year wait.

Maternity_11I had weird symptoms for about four years off and on, but nothing that would tie anything together for the doctors to think, hmmm… maybe it’s Lupus. After my oldest was born I had a rough recovery and then around the time he was eight months old all the symptoms I had previously hit at once and more. By the time he was a year and a half I was diagnosed, finally. Truthfully, I was just glad to finally have a name, a thing, a reason for everything. I could finally know what I was working with. Getting any diagnosis is scary, especially one like Lupus since it is so mysterious and can attack any part of your body. It’s hard to predict and hard to treat. But, God gave me a peace from the beginning. My story is from Him, He has everything in control and Lupus is just part of my story and I have come to terms with that. He has plans for me!

Since I was young, one of the first things that the doctor asked was if I wanted to have anymore children. There was no question that I did, we had always talked about wanting to have a large family. But, it was going to have to wait… for the time being. Lupus patients can have safe pregnancies and healthy babies, but the best thing to do is first get it under control before putting your body through the stress of pregnancy. So that meant that I spent the next year working with the doctor to get everything controlled and to a point that I could get pregnant. That was hard, because by then in our ideal world we would have already been trying for another baby. Being told yes, but not right now is very trying…

After a year we finally got the okay from the doctor, everything looked good and we could try for our second child! Yay! And then came the next year… I honestly thought, oh it will take a while, but probably not longer than it took the last time. Well, it took exactly a year before we were pregnant. Since it was such a long wait I truthfully was in shock when I had a positive pregnancy test! You wait that long and eventually you start to think of it as a distant future thing, when it finally meets your present it’s so exciting you can’t believe it.

Fast forward a few months and I am sitting here, my oldest will be four next month and my youngest will be born within the next four weeks. It was definitely not the plan we had envisioned for our family, we had always pictured a two to three-year age gap. But, God has a much better, more beautiful plans than we can make for ourselves. Will we get to have four kids like we always imagined? I don’t know, and at first that saddened me. But now, I know that we will be given the number of children that God had planned for us from the beginning. If that means two, three or four it doesn’t matter, because whatever His plans are for me I am thankful! I am thankful to be called Mom and thankful for the two amazing little boys that God has blessed me with already.

A New Season Ahead

July 19, 2014 — Leave a comment

If you haven’t noticed, it’s been pretty quiet around my blog lately. I took about a 6 month break from pretty much all my writing. There was a lot going on and it just seemed like the thing that needed to happen, one less thing to think about in my day. But, only for a season, because I truly do love my writing time… and now I am back!

The Regal Ruby is our take on the classic Cherry Pie

The Regal Ruby is our take on the classic Cherry Pie

The last post that I wrote was about The Year of Pie. Well, many of you probably already know that I have started a company with one of my friends, Viva La Pies. This was all in the beginning stages when I took my writing break. I have wanted to own my own Pie and Coffee shop for about eight years now. It never failed that when we would visit family in a small town in east Texas, Chase and I would find ourselves in the local pie shop dreaming about my future shop. We had talked about the “someday” pie shop for so many years that when we began to get more serious about it, it was kind of surreal. Finally, Chase asked me, “if you didn’t try, would you regret it?” I had no question in my mind what the answer was, yes… I would always wonder what-if. And with that we had our answer. My business partner and I worked for several months perfecting our menu and getting it exactly how we wanted it. Then came time for the Kickstarter, because opening a pie shop can be rather pricey. We ran a month-long Kickstarter and unfortunately we were not funded. It was definitely a disappointment. But, that has not stopped us. And why should it? Right now, we are operating as a home bakery and are working towards our store front. God can see what is ahead, and for that I am thankful, because he knows the best time for this to happen. Not to mention, we have had a great receiving from our online followers once we started accepting pie orders as a home bakery.

Viva La Pies

Want some pie? Don’t worry, we have plenty!

 

Also during my writing break and in the middle of starting Viva La Pies, I found out that I was pregnant. This was a two-year long wait that we were very excited about! We were so ready to grow our family, and was starting to wonder if that was ever going to happen for us. Not to mention how my Lupus was going to respond. Thankfully Lupus has been so quiet, I can actually say that I don’t even realize I have it right now! Praise the Lord! Like I mentioned above, it was a disappointment when our Kickstarter was not funded, but it definitely made sense with what was going on within our own family, it would not have been easy to open up a store front while pregnant.

Now, I am home after two years of being in the workforce. Those two years taught me so much, and I am thankful for that time along with this new journey ahead. My days fill up fast as I have an amazing three-and-a-half year old who keeps me busy, a couple of days a week I work for one of Chase’s companies, along with marketing and baking pies for Viva, all while being pregnant. It’s busy, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything! I am thoroughly enjoying the blessing we were given that is allowing me to work from home right now.

Sometimes, our timeline looks a little different from God’s timeline, but He always knows what He is doing!

 

The following post is a guest article written by Ruby Andrew. Ruby Andrew lives in Bristol, UK and is an avid reader and blogger. Since her early years she’s had a passion for writing. Her articles have been published in leading UK newspapers. Her areas of interest are food, reviews (Book/Movie), Travel, Fashion, Lifestyle, Fitness and Health. She works as a guest blogger on her chosen areas of interest and currently writes on behalf of EHIC card. 

Say “Hello” to Ruby Andrew

Systemic lupus is called “the disease with a thousand faces” in light of the disease affecting almost any organ of the body, and the symptoms resembling that of many other diseases. A condition in which the body isn’t processing enough red platelets; manifestations can extend from throbbing joints, fever, joint pain, exhaustion, skin rashes, and frailty. Lupus is a life-long battle full of the ups and downs and the uncertainty of how the disease can affect your life as well as the life of your loved ones. Caring for loved ones who suffer from Lupus is the biggest challenge in the life of the caretaker, as they need to cope with the physical and emotional sufferings of their loved one.Here are the few tips on how to take the best care of your loved ones with Lupus and how to safeguard the health of yourself.

1. Learn About Lupus

Lupus is a ceaseless, immune system sickness that influences nearly 1.5 million Americans. As information is a powerful tool, knowing the information about Lupus helps you to take better care of your loved ones.

2. Learn Early Warning Signals Of Lupus

As one might expect, the cautioning signs vary for every individual. Signs can incorporate hair diminishing, expanded joint torment, expanded exhaustion, and raised body temperatures. Signs and symptoms will vary patient to patient.

 3. Give Them Emotional Support

Besides the physical symptoms, Lupus profoundly affects a person emotionally well as.

Now it’s the time for the caretakers to build positive support for the people who are suffering from lupus.

4.Educate About Nutritious Diet

Learn with your loved one the best diet for their illness.

5. Take a Break from Lupus

Ask your loved one how they are feeling. Both the caretaker and the patient need to take a break from Lupus and enjoy themselves.

It’s not simple having lupus and it’s not simple being a guardian of a friend or a family member with lupus, on the grounds that you must be prepared for anything at whatever time. There are many help and supportive networks accessible to patients and family of individuals with lupus.

 

Go On, Admit It.

September 7, 2013 — Leave a comment

This is not an easy post to write. You see it is very common for people diagnosed with any disease to struggle with depression. But, no one wants to talk about it. Why? Because if you admit to having dealt with this issue then suddenly you will be seen as an emotionally unstable basket case. At least that is what we believe others will see.

typewriterThe truth is, it’s very common to deal with depression. In fact the Lupus Foundation of America states that “between 15 and 60 percent of people with a chronic illness will experience clinical depression.” That is a significant number! So why do we fear to mention this “symptom” of our disease? Because we are scared that others will view us differently. 

I have dealt with depression. There I said it. And honestly it’s not even easy for me to admit to you right now. I am actually sitting here thinking about your response as I type this.

At first I didn’t even realize that I was dealing with depression. I thought that I was emotional for one reason or another. When I finally began to realize what I was dealing with I didn’t want to admit it out loud because saying it means that it’s a reality. The thing is I wasn’t depressed about any one thing, I would find myself crying for no reason at all and frustrated that I couldn’t figure out why. I struggled understanding what was happening because I never really had a melt down after being diagnosed. There was a peace that I felt when I heard the words Lupus. There was finally a name to the problems I was having, and I knew that everything was in God’s hands. But, what I didn’t take into account was the changes that happened days, weeks and even months ahead. Fatigue that caused our family to end a Saturday outing earlier than normal, nausea that lasted all day, painful joints that left me sitting on the couch with heating pads all evening. It could be much worse, but it was change that I didn’t see coming. I also now know that certain medications can have a side effect of depression. Eventually my emotions began to shine through and I was able to see that yes, I was dealing with depression.

I don’t believe that depression is something that can ever truly be a hurdle that you leap over and never come to again with a chronic illness. The difference is that once you know it can creep up along your path at anytime you know what to do with it. For me, I look at it as another way to help others. You see I truly believe that my Lupus is more than just an illness. It is a ministry. If I didn’t battle with the things that come with my disease then I wouldn’t be able to encourage others in the way that I can connect with them now. So I write this to you today to say that it is okay to not be perfect! It is okay to admit that our illness stinks! It is okay to admit that your having a rough day! Because then we can stand together and fight our illnesses side by side!

I am not patient. But lately I am finding that God is teaching me this very difficult lesson. There are so many dreams I have for myself and our family that I truly believe are dreams instilled in me from God. Sometimes those things just don’t happen overnight. In fact, that is usually the case! With the world of instant gratification the idea of waiting is unthinkable! Patience, who has time for that? I’ll just zap my food in the microwave and my “baked lasagna” will be ready in less than 3 minutes! Why on Earth would I actually bake my lasagna in the oven for half an hour? Patience! Ha! Do we even know what the world actually means?

Dictionary.com defines patience as the quality of being patient, as the bearing of provocation, annoyance, misfortune, or pain, without complaint, loss of temper, irritation, or the like. An ability or willingness to suppress restlessness or annoyance when confronted with delay.

Go ahead and make an entire meal from the microwave! Why wait an hour?

Go ahead and make an entire meal from the microwave! Why wait an hour?

I’m pretty sure that our microwave zapping, instant streaming, world in our hands by the touch of an iPhone generation doesn’t have much of a chance! And I am right there with the rest of the population. If my iPhone is taking a hair too long to upload a page I’m annoyed, don’t even get me started when there are three commercials on Hulu instead of just one! Speaking of commercials, my child doesn’t even know what they are! We don’t have cable. Instead we bought Netflix and Hulu, made our lives cheaper and no commercials! The first time he experienced the world of commercials he was at his Aunt’s house and the Mickey Mouse Club House was rudely interrupted by a commercial. He energetically let out “I want more! More Mickey!” This continued until the show came back on. Little did we know getting rid of traditional cable would make my child impatient! It wasn’t our intention, I promise!

I’m not sure about your family, but we like to dream big! Chase and I will be driving down the road and one or both of us will start dreaming of having more children, when we can take a big Europe vacation, update our kitchen, get a second car, Chase’s businesses grow even larger and I write full-time. Our list of dreams go on and on. Here is what I am learning, rather slowly, these things might actually be our future but they won’t come easy and they won’t come with the push of a button. Sometimes we have to patiently wait where we are, work hard and enjoy the blessings of our current circumstances because as long as we are following God’s path, the blessings are sure to follow! This is something that I am having to remind myself of more often than not. I see what we are working towards, the steps we are taking and the amazing benefits of our sacrifices to get where we are wanting to go. But I still struggle with the microwave mentality. Can’t it just happen now? I’m trying daily to overcome this awful mindset because I know that when you are so focused on what you want someday, you miss out on the amazing of today! And I don’t want to miss out on the blessings of my here and now!