Monday, February 11, 2013

Mundane Updates

I realize that so many people are invested, now, in our lives and so I feel I owe it to you to give you a brief update on the little things.

-As for Ivy's eczema, we have figured that all out.  She has a ton of food sensitivities that I had her tested for at a very early age.  One of them was corn...and I realized that I was a bit naughty in sneaking handfuls of popcorn over the holidays as I made treats for our gift baskets.  Since I am still nursing Ivy, everything I eat affects her.  I have to eat for both of our food sensitivities which keeps me constantly on my toes.  Anyway, all that to say, we discovered that she is allergic to corn...more than just sensitive.  Once I stopped sneaking bites, the eczema has cleared up.  We keep her bathed and moisturized regularly and all is good on that front.  Thank you for your prayers and suggestions.

-Health-wise, our family is still sick.  Thankfully and most importantly, Ivy is at the tail end of her second cold in a month.  But, after a month of doing everything possible to keep my immune system strong, it could hold out no longer.  Mark and I caught the bug over this past weekend.  It's not so bad, I think because I have the best natural home remedies on the planet and I fight hard...but I am very tired and sniffly with a cough.  I'm sure it will pass quickly.  Mark and I have not been sick in a few years.  Illnesses are usually rare in our household.

-As for the trial with the second counselor.  Oye vey - that did not turn out well at all.  I will back up and explain that the first counselor we tried was good, she was sweet and compassionate and a good listener...but she was very young and did not have children.  We would prefer a more seasoned counselor who is also a parent.  So, I went on the hunt for another.  I got connected with this other counselor whom I discovered was in our area, worked evenings, is a Christian, and is also a widow with young adult children.  Seemingly perfect, right?  Nope.  She actually was horrible.  I don't know anything about counselors, but I am quite sure this was not how it is supposed to be done.  She spoke the entire time.  Mark got in like 3 words.  I barely got to tell our story without her jumping in.  We got a lot of "that's normal" comments.  She took soooo much time giving examples for everything single thing she talked about - for ex:  2 examples of what "fight or flight" looks like.  Who doesn't know what fight or flight is??!  On top of that, she maintained an awkward, upbeat, perky, lighthearted demeanor and even threw in some random "jokes' here and there.  It was so inappropriate and awkward.  I was itching to leave halfway through.  She told us how "normal" our reactions were; she told us "that it's ok to be angry at God" (duh); and she told us that "things will get better and we will look back on this one day and see it's purpose".....all things that anyone could tell me.  All things, we do not need to hear right now.
Anyway, so now we are just taking a break from the hunt.  That was emotionally exhausting.  Now, I have decided to wait until I meet someone who can personally endorse a counselor.  I am no longer going to take recommendations through the grapevine.  I guess we are picky?  Really, I don't think so.  But, we are officially looking for someone who is definitely a Christian counselor who specializes in grief and loss, someone who is a bit older/seasoned, a parent, someone who is a good listener with discernment and insight, and someone who knows how to be compassionate and solemn for such a serious topic as ours.  Mark and I are intelligent people, we cannot be patronized and given ridiculously basic platitudes.  So, if any of you grieving Mamas out there, who are local, have already found a counselor that you love...please pass on the name.  Thank you.

-And, finally, I wanted to thank all of you who took the time to answer my question in the last post about "Why do you pray?".  It really meant a lot.  You gave me much to stew on and think about.  Just hearing personal testimony in how God has worked in your life, through prayer, was uplifting for me.  We all know I will get back to that place eventually...but I am just taking my time asking all the questions and maybe not being so naive as I was before.  God has forever changed in my eyes and I need to figure that out and come to terms with it.  If you haven't left a comment on that one and still would like to, please do.

Here is a sweet picture that Kinsey took of me and Ivy last weekend when they visited ~

(how can anyone NOT smile at those darling spaced-apart teethers in that beautiful smile of hers?)

~ thank you for all of your support and prayers and consistency.  I say it all the time, but seriously, you have NO idea how much it all means to me.  xoxoxo


  1. I loved your "mundane" updates Jenny. Nothing mundane about it at all. So sorry the counselor is so hard to come by. I have no recommendations, but will pray you find him/her in God's perfect timing. Feel better soon. Ivy is so, so precious!

  2. Love her toothie smile. Ivy is such a joy-bug. And you? Well, I may be a bit biased, but you are gorgeous, my every way.

  3. Ok...I just figured out the "subscribe by email thing". Let's see if it works. Doy.

    1. Doy. Yes, I smiled at your goofiness. Love you mom.

  4. Don't you love "Doy"? Never spelled that out before. Duh? yes. But Doy? No.
    are you laughing?

  5. Sweet Jenny,

    I feel like we have become friends since I started reading about your precious girls. I will always read your mundane updates and try to send my love to each one.

    You are stronger than you know.

    I also want to say to your mom that she is in my heart. Watching your daughter battle the war that you must face makes my chest heavy thinking about it. I am also SO SORRY that she lost her adorable granddaughter. Thinking of you Julie.

    Your new friend,
    Bozeman, MT

    1. You are so sweet Pam. All of you who leave comments feel like sweet tender friends to me. It is a true blessing.

      And, thank you for your sweet words to my mom. She will love that.

  6. I follow your blog daily, but sometimes I choose not to comment because I don't have the right "words" to say. Now the more I think about how ridiculous that sounds because there aren't any words to say that could ever take your pain away. I apologize for not commenting... you are such a beautiful woman/mother and you have a beautiful family. Thank you for opening up your heart and allowing me to be a part of your lives. I've never personally met you but feel I know you. (I actually attended Ecola when Mark was at Bella) :) oh and I'm finding myself seeking out anything dinosaur. ♥

    1. Thank you, Allie, for taking a moment to leave a comment. I know how awkward it is. I know the struggle to find the right words. And, you're right. There aren't any. But, truly, just KNOWING that you are here and thinking of us and remembering Vienne...well, that is all that I can ask for and it fills a little space in my heart.

      LOVE that you are being drawn to dinos. Oh my heart.


  7. Jenny, as I read through the comments it truly amazes me at the wonderful people who are out there, and don't even know you. You are loved!
    So Chris and I too had a horrible experience with the councelor...we must have gone to the same one. Lol. Exactly like our lady. Too bad this happened. So 10 months later we are finally going to a councelor again, tonight. Hope it works out. She is Christian. I will let you know. She's in Tigard.

    I'm so glad your sweet Ivy is such a joy. We are blessed with these little girls we still have.
    Love to you
    And your mom is funny. Doy. I laughed out loud.

    1. hhmmm...I look forward to talking about our experiences together and I look forward to hearing how it goes for you guys tonight.

      We will chat soon. xoxo Love to you.

  8. I am so glad you blog so I can see how it is going for you! I love Ivy's precious smile. My heart, thoughts and prayers are always with you. Hugs! Andrea

  9. First, I want to tell you again how incredibly beautiful Vienne is and how I look forward to your posts. I am growing through them and learning more and more how to appreciate everything I have and not focusing on what I don't.

    I don't always comment but I always read and Madison loves to look at the prictures and the videos but it makes her really sad.

    I know how hard it is to find the right counselor. I want to share a bit about my experience almost 17 years ago. I know mine was a bit different but it was sudden, so unexpected, the end of the dream that I had taken 35 years to find. The first counselor that I saw was my stepmom's counselor after my stepbrother died. She had also lost her son at a young age. He was kicked in the head by a horse and died right in fornt of her. She was spiritual but not necessarily a Christian. Her office was in a lovely old victorian mansion in NW Portand. I was a new christian and on fire for the Lord so I was a bit skeptical but she helped my stepmom so much. I found htat with all of the counselors I have seen she probably helped me the most because she truly understood the depth of the pain. The pain I thought would physically kill me. What I learned from her most is that this is a process, a very, very long process. When you love that deep digging your way up out of such intense despair is a lot of work. And there aren't any words that can take it away even when they come from a professional. She knew when to just listen, she knew when to push me a bit, and she didn't try to "fix" me. She told me to find someone that I could talk with, saying the same things over and over and over, each time my sould accepting it just a bit more. Acceptance is very different than "getting over it" or all of a sudden being healed. I am still not healed, but I do have joy in my life. When you lose someone you love so deeply (and I can't even fathom your loss) there will always be a empty part of you. Because we are Christian we have the assurance that we will be reunited one day, but that came later. Over the years I have seen many Christian counselors, some wonderful and some awful (one told me that by missing Steve it was insulting Tony-seriously????).

    Don't be hard on yourself, or try to rush yourself. Know that counseling will help. I think that finding someone who has actually lost a child will really help. I think someone who understands and believes in God is important but someone who understands grief may be even more important right now. I will see if my stepmom remebers the counselor's name, I was in a fog and don't remember.

    Just thoughts. I don't know if this helps or not. Sending much love and prayers to you and Mark (and the rest of your family)!
    xo, Susan Morris

    1. Thank you for sharing all of this with me, Susan.

      The part where you wrote about having to come to accept this, which is different from "getting over it" or "being healed" made sense to me. Acceptance ended up being a bit of the theme from last week. I am realizing that that is where I am going to have to get to...maybe I am getting closer than I realize. I realize that there is absolutely NOTHING I can do to bring her I need to accept this burden that I have to carry for the rest of my life.

      I am rethinking my interest in a counselor, for now. I am looking more into just establishing a relationship with an older prayerful woman who can walk through this with me....someone with compassion and wisdom. I have been set up with someone like that and it is much more appealing to me.

      Anyway, I will share more on that later. Thank you again for your thoughts and insight.