A Smiling Six

Abby Mae turned six on Friday.

Her smile says it all.  I have zillions of pictures of her, but this one makes the top ten without question.  Sheer joy encompassed her in the Chuckie Cheese ticket blaster as she frantically grabbed at colored scraps swirling all around, shrieking with delight.

And to think I almost didn’t get to write this.

Nothing short of miraculous is her life.  Even her birthdate, 3-16, symbolizes the hand of God upon her soul.  I tell the whole story in one of my favorite blog posts titled 3-16, linked below.

https://drinkingfromthewell.com/2017/03/16/3-16/

 

A New Birth

27C

My son, John, turns five today. I can barely see the screen through my tears because John almost didn’t make it to his first birthday, let alone fifth. During the twentieth week of pregnancy, my husband (Christian) and I learned that John had gastroschisis, a birth defect in which his intestines formed outside his body.

Christian and I were stunned at first but later heartbroken and scared. The joy-filled visions of the coming baby flew out the window. A 20-minute appointment had changed our lives.

Forever.

We cried a lot. We prayed a lot, as did our family and friends. Finally, as much as we dreaded facing the ordeal ahead, God in His amazing way ignited our passion and gave us the courage, hope, and strength to fight for the life of our son.

So, we took a big breath and moved forward.

Over the next seventeen weeks and then another four-and-a-half months in the hospital, John never gave up. By his sheer determination and the greatness of our God, he survived. He continued to thrive, growing and gaining weight at a normal rate. Within his first year, he no longer needed his feeding tube, and by four years of age, he came off all medication.

Thank You, God!

I cannot think of a more appropriate date on which to launch this blog. My husband wrote our family’s first post on John’s CarePage blog at my bedside minutes after his delivery.

Today, our family’s challenges have given birth to another blog, Drinking from the Well. By using everything we’ve learned over the past five years, we look forward to helping families not only survive difficult circumstances but also thrive, whether they find themselves in active crisis or beyond.

Happy Birthday, John. I love you!

WELCOME TO THE WELL

Bird drinking water

Had I known the details of the past seven years of my life before they passed, I would never have dreamed that I would survive them. A disabling heart condition. Two children with life-threatening birth defects. A crumbling marriage. Two miscarriages, both eight weeks to the day.

Unfortunately, the list goes on.

I don’t know the specific details of your wounds, whether they’re fresh and raw or healed to the point of nearly invisible scars. Perhaps you’ve recently lost a loved one or have admitted your child to the hospital. Maybe you’ve recently moved, lost a job, or have separated with little chance of reconciliation.

But from where I stand today, I can assure you that there is hope.

When I was in the thick of the hardest moments and the scorching fear and searing pain threatened to completely discourage and overwhelm me, I desperately needed to find an oasis in the desert where I could drink deeply from the well of someone who understood, someone who’d been there and done that. Someone who owned a pair of well-worn sandals buried deep in the closet, someone willing to drag them out to walk a few dusty miles by my side.

So relax against the cool, smooth stones and rest your weary soul while I dust off my sandals.

I want to walk with you.

GOALS for DRINKING FROM THE WELL 

  • To share our story as a means of encouraging others
  • To provide helpful information to families in active crisis
  • To provide resources that promote healing post-crisis
  • To give ideas that will help strengthen family relationships
  • To share the love of Jesus, the Living Water that quenches every thirst

“Let anyone who is thirsty come to Me and drink. Whoever believes in Me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” John 7:37-38

Drinking from the Well fits perfectly with my life’s purpose, which is to comfort and encourage others who hurt with the generous love and comfort I have received. My three main passions are Jesus, writing/speaking, and people. Okay, maybe four. Horses. I love horses. My sub-passions are by no means limited to the following: reading, singing, decorating cakes, running, cooking, gardening, and crafting (i.e. scrapbooking, quilting, sewing, painting, etc.). I am also addicted to using my dandelion hook.

On a professional note, I am a former pediatric dietitian, forced to resign in 2000 due to a heart condition. I turned to freelance writing, completed The Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writers Guild’s Apprenticeship Program, and got busy writing articles and book proposals.

By the grace of God, our marriage and our relationships with our children are stronger than ever. Our dream as a couple is to own a farm through which our family can help hungry, hurting, and lonely people. By connecting them with resources to grow their own food and by sharing the love of Christ, we seek to offer hope, love, and a family that lasts forever.

Thanks for stopping in. I’ve got my sandals on and will keep you in my constant prayers. May God richly bless you and yours, both today – and beyond.

Much love,

Beth