Archive for the ‘Family’ Category

Thankful Thursday: Six months ago today

April 30th, 2015

Six months ago today, I was sicker than I’d ever been in my life.

Prepping for the c-section

Six months ago today, I made a decision I’d never thought I’d make.

Six months ago today, my infant daughter was delivered via C-section, eight weeks before her due date.

Weighing in

Six months ago today, my Tirzah Mae was born.

She spent her first 26 days outside the womb in the NICU. She was fed through her veins at first, and then through a tube into her stomach, finally at the breast. She went from an incubator under bili-lights to the incubator without then to an open crib.

Tirzah Mae under the bili lights

She’s spent the last 155 days with us. She is fed at the breast, sleeps near us, is warmed by our warmth when she needs it.

Tirzah Mae and Papa enjoy each other's company

Five months out for just the one month in.

The books say that parents never forget their preemies’ births, their hospitalizations, their difficulties. And maybe the books are right.

But already, the memories start to fade. I forget how tiny she was, how helpless. I forget how desperate we were. I forget that she isn’t just another baby.

Snuggling inside mama's dress

When people ask her age, I tell them she’s about six months – starting to leave off “but she was born two months early”.

Tirzah Mae smiles as she swings

Six months makes a big difference.

One thing hasn’t changed in those six months though.

I still look at her little fingers, so perfectly formed, now full of flesh where once was only skin and bone. I wonder at them – how perfect, how delicate, how complete they are.

Setting her to scale

Eight weeks early, she was still complete. She was a baby, a human fully formed though immature.

I become sentimental, my thoughts meander.

What can I say that means anything, on this day six month out?

Perhaps the only thing I can say is to sing:

“‘Tis grace hath brought us safe thus far
And grace shall lead us home.”

Today, I am thankful for God’s grace. God’s grace in granting me life, in granting Tirzah Mae life. God’s grace in eight extra days in the womb. God’s grace in 26 short days of the NICU. God’s grace in 155 long days at home. God’s grace in sleepless nights, in pumping and shield use. God’s grace in spit up and diapers. God’s grace in baby laughter and Tirzah Mae recognizing herself in the mirror. God’s grace has been omnipresent.

Tirzah Mae plays in the mirror

Thank You, thank You, Gracious God.

Rice Cereal Time?

March 25th, 2015

Tirzah Mae had her “4 month” appointment today (Born five months ago and due 3 months ago) – and her doctor went through the standard four month advice, ending with “You can also start rice cereal now.”

To which Tirzah Mae’s dietitian mother answered, “Thanks but no thanks.”

Despite what your next door neighbor, the label on the baby cereal, and maybe even your family doc says, you do not need to introduce solids at 4 months. Most babies don’t need anything but breastmilk or infant formula until they’re six months old – and both breastfed and formula fed infants are at a disadvantage if they start solids too early.

For breastfed infants, the risk of adding solids before six months is related to what we breastfeeding people call the “virgin gut”. As long as Tirzah Mae is only receiving breastmilk, her gut has a protective layer (a simplified explanation that isn’t precisely correct, sorry!) that practically sheds pathenogenic bacteria and other icky stuff. Once that layer has been broken, baby can get sick more easily (now, don’t get me wrong – this does not mean that breastmilk is no longer beneficial after the gut’s barrier has been broken – keep breastfeeding even if you introduced solids prematurely!) The longer the breastfed baby waits before breaking that barrier, the better off she is – to a point. That point is right about 6 months , when an infant’s iron stores from birth are depleted and she needs some extra iron (this is why iron fortified infant cereal is recommended as baby’s first food).

For the formula fed infant, there’s no gut barrier to break – it’s been broken long ago (after that first two ounces of formula), but that doesn’t mean that we should be gung-ho about starting those solids right at four months. A few babies are developmentally ready at four months – but the vast majority develop the head and neck control needed to safely eat solids later. And introducing solids too soon can risk replacing the relatively nutrient-rich formula baby has been receiving with the (mostly) “empty calories” of (most) “Stage 1” baby foods (as well as increase risk of allergies).

So, when SHOULD you start solids?

If you’re breastfeeding your baby, when your baby shows signs of developmental readiness, no sooner than six months. If you’re formula feeding, when your baby shows signs of developmental readiness, no sooner than four months.

What are these signs of developmental readiness I speak of? I’m so glad you asked.

First, your baby should be sitting up with minimal support. This means with a pillow behind him – not strapped into a seat with a five point harness or sitting in a Bumbo.

Second, your baby should be able to hold his head steady and make controlled head movements in the sitting position. If I had a dime for every parent who has told me their two week old already has great head control… Remember, I said “in the sitting position”.

Finally, your baby should open his mouth wide for a spoon of food and close it once the spoon’s inside. If your baby is still sticking out his tongue when the spoon touches his lips, he’s not ready for solids. His tongue is under reflexive control – it needs to be under his control before he starts eating solids.

As for Tirzah Mae? We’ll be breastfeeding with nothing else added at LEAST for another month (six months from her birthday) but probably closer to three more months (until six months after her due date).

I don’t want to forget

March 9th, 2015

Two years ago today was a momentous day – one I’ll never forget.

I say that, but the truth is, I’ve already started to forget so much about my wedding day. The sermon, the toasts, the greetings of friends. If I don’t have written record or pictorial proof, chances are I’ve already started to forget – with no way to reclaim those moments.

Which is why, here, on our second anniversary, I want to record the details I most don’t want to forget.

I don’t want to forget…

…the people

My girlfriends helping me dress, bustling on the other side of the hall to prepare a luncheon for the party. The surprising arrival of my brother and his pregnant wife and daughter. Skyping with my other brother, halfway around the world, before the day began. My family, doing what my family does best – making things happen. Extended family arriving in great swaths. People from church in Columbus, from church in Lincoln, from my childhood church. My teammates from the Jacksonville Summer Training Program. Charlotte, who knew us both when, telling me in the receiving line: “You and Daniel – if only I’d have thought of it sooner.”

All of them expressing their support, rejoicing in God’s provision, rooting for our marriage.

…the promises
I lightly adapted the text from The Book of Common Prayer for our order of service. I answered “I will” when our pastor asked me if I would “take Daniel to be your husband, to live with him in holy marriage according to the Word of God? Will you love him, comfort him, honor him, obey him, and keep him in sickness and in health and, forsaking all others, be wife to him as long as you both shall live?”

I promised God that day that I would be wife to Daniel. I promised to live with him in holy marriage, not a secular union. To love him, to comfort him, to honor him, to obey him.

I made a solemn vow before God and the congregation:

“I, Rebekah, take you, Daniel, to be my husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until death do us part. To this, I pledge you my faithfulness.”

I want to remember those promises. I want to keep those promises.

…the Preeminence
It’s normal to have Scripture readings and songs at a wedding. It’s normal for these readings and songs to elevate love, to proclaim love’s worth, to delight in love.

And believe me, Daniel and I enjoy love.

But we wanted our wedding to elevate something else. But that’s not quite right either. We wanted our wedding to elevate someone else.

We chose Colossians 1:15-23 for a reading:

“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.

And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him, if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, became a minister.”

We sang two congregational hymns – one looking backward at the faithfulness of God (“Great is Thy Faithfulness”), one looking forward, petitioning God to be before us (Be Thou My Vision).

Because we didn’t want our wedding prayer to be all about us. We didn’t want our marriage to be all about us. We wanted our marriage to be all about Christ.

I never want to forget that. I always want to live that. I want that day’s passion for Christ’s preeminence to be every day’s passion.

Sanity Saving Stuff: Preemie and Newborn

February 10th, 2015

Don’t you just love those lists of baby “must haves”? My favorite of all is Pop Sugar’s list of 100 (yes, you heard me right, 100) Must Have Baby Products. It was like the car crash you can’t help but watch. Tirzah Mae probably doesn’t have 100 items total, much less 100 separate items.

That said, I have found a few products that have absolutely saved my sanity during these preemie and newborn months (months we’re now leaving behind!)

Hospital Grade Electric Breastpump

Tirzah Mae received expressed breastmilk almost exclusively in the hospital and during the first month at home (we breastfed one to two times a day “straight from the tap.”) This meant that I was pumping a minimum of eight times a day. The Medela symphony the hospital loaned me during Tirzah Mae’s NICU stay saved me. It was fast, quiet, and comfortable.

Once Tirzah Mae was home, I used the Medela Pump-in-Style my insurance provided – and let me tell you, it’s a world of difference. I did everything I could to avoid pumping. I’d pump a couple times a day, hand express a couple more, and empty myself as best I could in the shower. Thankfully, I had plenty of breastmilk in the freezer, so the fact that I let my supply dwindle didn’t hurt Tirzah Mae (I worked intensively over a week to get it back up after I realized what I was doing). But if I’d have had less of a supply initially and was trying to exclusively pump after I returned, I’d have ended up quitting. The Pump-in-Style took longer, was noisy, and gave me blood blisters on my breasts (probably because I was increasing the pressure too much in an attempt to make it as efficient as the Symphony.)

By the grace of God, we were able to switch to exclusively breastfeeding (at the breast) around Christmas-time, meaning an end to my pumping days. I know many mothers of preemies are not so fortunate. I’ve got one word of advice for those mothers – RENT A HOSPITAL GRADE PUMP. It’s totally worth it.

Hands Free Pumping Bra

Despite Tirzah Mae being born early, I had an abundant milk supply – which meant that I only pumped 15 minutes at a time (with the hospital grade pump). But even pumping for a shorter time than many women, I still spent at least 2-3 hours a day pumping (and much more than that cleaning parts and labeling and storing the breastmilk). That’s a fair bit of time to spend doing nothing with your hands. Being able to pump hands-free meant a lot to me. (Initially, it allowed me to massage my breasts while pumping – relieving the clogged ducts I had from the beginning and helping to increase my supply to prodigous amounts. After my supply was established and clogged ducts were less of an issue, it let me email my family updates on Tirzah Mae, read a book, or browse blogs.)

Now some of you may wonder about the best hands-free pumping bras. I can’t help you with that one. I just had my husband buy cheapo sports bras, which I cut slits into to allow the flanges through. I wore them alone at night and over my nursing bra during the day. It worked great for me (although if I were to have needed to continue pumping exclusively, I would have done a buttonhole stitch around the slits and possibly used a tube top for the same purpose during the day for increased wardrobe flexibility.

Supportive Nursing Bra

At first, I thought maybe the backache I had almost immediately after delivery was from the c-section weakening my abdominals. And undoubtedly that contributed. But the biggest contributor was swollen milk breasts and insufficient support. Having delivered two months before expected, I didn’t have any nursing bras already ready – and there was no way my mom-breasts would fit into my second trimester bra (I hadn’t yet gone shopping for a third trimester one despite the fact that it was becoming clearly necessary.)

Since no one carries nursing bras my size (actually, very few stores carry bras, period, my size), I had to create my own nursing bras. I went to my local Dillards to get fitted and was delighted when the salesclerk announced that they’d just increased the size range of my favorite bra up to the size I was currently at. I took them home and used this tutorial to make myself some well-fitting nursing bras (I used the hooks and eyes off of several old bras, how’s that for being a frugal genius – or a packrat who can now justify herself?)

My back felt better almost immediately.

Get a good bra. Your back will thank you.

MOBY wrap

I’ve known for years that I wanted to be a baby-wearer. But I was plenty willing to admit that babywearing is just one of many legitimate ways to carry and care for a baby. Now I’m convinced that the MOBY has absolutely saved my sanity.

Tirzah Mae in the MOBY

You see, when we were in the hospital and when I was reading books about preemies, I kept hearing one thing: preemies must NOT be exposed to crowds. No shopping malls. No movies. No church. For a year.

Now I don’t have any problem with leaving movies and shopping malls behind. But church? I can’t just not go to church for a year.

I talked with Tirzah Mae’s neonatal nurse practitioner about it and she agreed with my proposed solution. Tirzah Mae would go to church with us in the MOBY. The MOBY holds her close, covers her up and sticks her face in my chest – meaning that no one else can get very close to touch her or cough on her (they’d have to get pretty close to my chest even to just breathe on her.)

We took her to church the Sunday after she came home and she’s been to church with us every week since then (except the week where none of us attended because I had mastitis).

Yes, the MOBY saved my sanity by letting me worship with the body weekly.

One-piece sleepers

When it comes to clothing, babies aren’t picky – which is a very nice thing. They don’t care how stylish clothing is or whether it’s matched or anything like that. What they do care about is getting in and out quickly without too much pulling and tugging. Moms care a little more about matching and cuteness and all that.

I love these one piece sleepers
One-piece sleepers answer both. Mom doesn’t have to worry about matching clothes bleary-eyed after baby has a blow-out at 1 am (after mom has gotten exactly 7 minutes of sleep, none of them consecutive, in the past 24 hours.) Baby doesn’t have to worry about something going over her head. And, if you choose the sleepers that snap all the way up the legs, you can avoid uncovering that little chest during non-blow-out diaper changes (which is a nice plus.)

I put Tirzah Mae in the adorable little onesie, pant, and sock combos often enough – but when things got crazy and I was at the end of my rope, the one-piece sleepers were sanity savers.

Looking back on your kids’ infancies, what baby products did you find absolutely essential? What were your sanity-savers? Pray tell.

Ditching the Shield

January 26th, 2015

Disclaimer: This post contains a frank discussion of some of the difficulties of breastfeeding a preemie. I try not to be vulgar, but I do discuss the mechanics of breastfeeding openly. If you’d rather not read, feel free to skip this post.

After two half-hearted attempts to get my nipple situated in Tirzah Mae’s tiny red mouth, the nurse told me to wait right there.

As if I could do anything else. The swaddled miniature in my arms was hooked to half a dozen monitors, keeping her – and me – tightly bound to our recliner.

I tried again, squeezing breast tissue between thumb and forefinger to make a “nipple sandwich”. But Tirzah Mae was looking away – and my attempt to draw her close caused my sandwich to fall apart.

The nurse returned, deftly separating the cardboard insert from the back of a blister pack.

“Here.” She handed me a clear silicone nipple with small holes on the end. “Your nipples are too big for her to latch onto.”

I thought about protesting. We’d barely tried to latch Tirzah Mae on – and nipple shields, I knew, were not without risks. But they’d drilled home the NICU truth – we couldn’t waste calories doing unnecessary things, even things like latching her on at the breast.

So that was that.

A week later, a different nurse asked me how breastfeeding was going as she weighed Tirzah Mae before a breastfeeding session.

I explained that we were using a shield, but that it was going okay with that.

I heard myself in her voice, urging me to try to latch on without the shield.

I nodded halfheartedly, just like my clients do when I make the same suggestion.

“You don’t understand,” I thought. “I only get to breastfeed once a day and that for only thirty minutes. I can’t waste our precious time trying to get her latched.”

And the frustration at NICU policies caught up to me – scheduled feedings that were spaced too far apart for my infant daughter who was clearly hungry, crying and eating her fists after just two and a half hours, being able to breastfeed only once a day, having breastfeeding timed and with before and after weights constantly measuring our performance. Hot tears rolled down my cheeks and I was thankful for the dimmed lights that hid my anger.

Once we had Tirzah Mae home, Daniel asked me occasionally how it was going – practicing without the shield.

I loved him for internalizing my antipathy towards the shield – and hated him for rushing me.

Practicing wasn’t easy. Tirzah Mae would become angry that milk wasn’t already flowing. I became impatient with her anger. I was tired, drained from long nights with little sleep and days where nothing got done.

It was so much effort to go without the crutch.

I cursed the nurse who gave it to us, who got us hooked on its subtle evil. I blamed her, crying stormily, as I fumbled with the shield with sleep-numbed hands. As it fell off – once, twice, five times.

Tirzah Mae grew angry with the wait and Daniel woke up to her wail. I blamed the nurse when Daniel complained of being unfocused at work the next day.

But we kept practicing, first once a week then more and more frequently.

We’re almost done with it, Tirzah Mae and I.

I never take it when we go out. I never use it when we’re breastfeeding around the house. It stays in the basket beside the bed, only to be used if Tirzah Mae’s too frustrated to latch after a few tries at night.

We’re on our way to losing the shield.

Good riddance, I say.

Wordless Wednesday: Tirzah Mae’s Great Coat (Sweater) from Grandma Menter

January 14th, 2015

Tirzah Mae in the Sweater Grandma Crocheted for her

Rolled up sleeves

Great coat

Tirzah Mae’s Birth Day

January 6th, 2015

I’d already told Daniel I wanted a c-section, but he paid me no mind. I told him that as I cried angry tears, frustrated that I couldn’t stop shaking.

Maybe it was the IV magnesium – they’d said it could give one the shakes – but I hadn’t had a problem with my first dose a week earlier. Maybe it was the cervidil that was attempting to ripen my cervix. Or maybe it was that my condition was rapidly deteriorating – the reason we were inducing at 32 weeks.

Whatever it was, I was weak and out-of-control and I knew that I would need a c-section.

Daniel, knowing how set on a vaginal delivery I’d been, ignored my emotional outbursts.

Then, around midnight, in a rare break from the shaking, I explained myself more rationally.

I was shaking uncontrollably. I couldn’t move my limbs because they were so full of fluid and because I was hooked up to so many monitors and IVs and catheters. I was weak from 8 days of hospitalized bed rest and a week and a half of modified bed rest before that. Between the preeclamptic visual disturbances (poor color vision and dancing lights) and the fluid filling my face, I could barely see. If I was this much of a mess before we’d even gotten my cervix ripened, there was no way I’d make it through Pitocin-induced contractions to deliver vaginally.

Prepping for the c-section

Hearing my calm explanation, Daniel agreed – we would ask for a c-section.

Dr. Tackett came in to check on me – and I told him our decision. He agreed that my request was reasonable. They’d prepare for a c-section.

I had no idea what to expect with a c-section. Until that day, I’d planned for a vaginal delivery. So everything was unfamiliar as they wheeled me into the operating room, made me drink a foul-tasting beverage to neutralize my stomach acid, and had me lie very still on my side while they administered the spinal block.

Ready to vomit

Daniel was there at my head, holding my hand and looking over the curtain along my chest to see the operation.

I felt tugging, I heard a gasp and Daniel asking “Is that the water breaking?”

No, Dr. Jensen replied, he hadn’t even cut into my uterus yet. The water was ascites – excess fluid in the abdominal cavity, indicating that my liver had shut down.

There was more tugging, and the announcement that it was a girl – followed by “And her umbilical cord is wrapped tightly around her neck twice.”

I was overwhelmed with thankfulness – thankful that our baby was born, thankful that we’d chosen a c-section instead of having an emergency one once she’d shown distress.

I don’t remember hearing her cry, but she had to have – I read it in her Apgar scoring when I was reading through her chart later on. I do remember Daniel announcing her name in response to one of the medical staff’s questions – she was Tirzah Mae Eloise.

Pink and crying

Then Dr. Jensen was telling me he was sewing me double tight so I can have that VBAC – and I was again overwhelmed with thankfulness . Thankful that we had a relationship with the doctor who did our c-section. Thankful that he knew our desire to deliver vaginally. Thankful that he believes in VBAC and has helped many women successfully have them.

They brought my daughter close so I could see her and touch her. Still weak and uncoordinated, I flailed my arms in her direction – and stuck my finger in her eye.

Mama's first look

She was so tiny, so red, so clearly not supposed to be out of the womb. But she was alive – my daughter had been born.

“Daughter,” I told her. “I love you, my Tirzah Mae Eloise Garcia.”

They took her off to the NICU and wheeled my bed into the recovery room.

To be continued at a later date…

Wedding Whens and Wheres, Part 2

August 14th, 2013

In my previous post about wedding whens and wheres, I realize that I missed two parts. The time of day for our wedding and the place for our reception.

I don’t think determining the time of day for our wedding was particularly difficult for us. I grew up attending my aunts’ and uncles’ wedding (my mom was the second married of 12 children and I attended the weddings of at least 7 aunts and uncles during my childhood years)–and our family pattern was an early afternoon wedding with a reception immediately following in the church fellowship hall. Daytime weddings are traditional for our family.

Furthermore, as a college student and after, I’d attended many an evening wedding and mused at how worn out the bride and groom must be when they finally reach their honeymoon (or overnight) location. I was NOT eager to have my first night with my groom be one of exhausted irritability.

We chose a 1:30 wedding with a (short) reception immediately following.


Lincoln Meadows was fairly nondescript–and we didn’t do much to fancy it up, just flowers on the tables. But it fit everyone and let us cater ourselves–which was pretty much what I was looking for.

Once we had our ceremony site in place, we had to choose a site for our wedding reception. We couldn’t have it in the church fellowship hall, since the hall can only comfortably seat maybe 80 people. Variable weather in Nebraska in March meant outdoors wasn’t an option–so we had to find ourselves a reception hall.

We had some definite constraints:

  • The hall had to be available on March 9
  • The hall had to seat at least two hundred people
  • The hall had to have space for two hundred people to PARK (since our wedding was on the same day that Lincoln was hosting Nebraska’s Boys State basketball tournament)
  • The hall had to let us self-cater or, at the very least, allow us to bring in an outside caterer (because I’m uber-cheap)

I did internet searches for places, called for availability, and was left with exactly two potential places–one of which seemed definitely the better pick.

Since I wasn’t in Lincoln, I phoned the hall to figure out logistics and then sent my mom down to scope out the hall and reserve it.

Sign on the Reception Hall

When my mom went to the hall the morning of our wedding, the sign still bore the names of the previous couple. She contacted the hall, and by the time we got there the names had been changed

And that was that.

What: Wedding
When: 1:30 pm Saturday March 9, 2013
Where: Lincoln Christian Fellowship and Lincoln Meadows Social Hall

I made it down to Lincoln one weekend and my mom took me out to the place to peek in the windows–but otherwise, the first time I saw our reception location was when I arrived there to decorate the day before the wedding.

Despite all that, it turned out great. The only downside had nothing at all to do with the reception site and everything to do with my own lack of preparation.

I had mentioned the need for some sort of sound system in conversations with my folks but hadn’t followed up on it or made definite arrangements to have a microphone and speakers so our host could direct the reception activities more easily.


Daniel’s best man toasts us near the bar. (I tried to see if they’d let us go completely without a bar, but that wasn’t an option. So a bartender was there but we didn’t really advertise that it was available–which meant they maybe made a half dozen sales, max. Eh :-P)

Wedding Whens and Wheres

July 10th, 2013

The first decision in planning a wedding is either when or where, depending on how long you intend your engagement to be and how tightly your ceremony and reception venues schedule.

Daniel and I decided our when when we decided to get married. We were searching for any way to get married before summer (of 2013) and arrived at Spring Break.

Even so, we did end up making some adjustments. Both of my sisters-in-law happened to be pregnant at the time, one due in April and the other in May–and we wanted them to be able to be there if at all possible. Having our wedding one Saturday before the first Saturday of Spring Break would give Debbie 3 weeks rather than 2 before her due date–which just might be the difference between them making it or not. Furthermore, the first Saturday of Spring Break happened to be my brother John’s anniversary–and Daniel’s nephew’s birthday. It would be better for us to get married the week before.

Lincoln Christian Fellowship

The church building I grew up in–for as long as I can remember, I attended the big white and red trimmed church out in Airpark

That set, we needed to determine our wheres.

It wasn’t that hard to decide on Lincoln as our wedding location. Both of our parents live in Lincoln–and since much of my extended family and friends live north of Lincoln and many of Daniel’s extended family and friends live south of Lincoln, it made Lincoln a good central location.

Our next consideration was whether to get married at my parents’ church, at Daniel’s parents’ church, or somewhere else entirely.

Daniel was pretty open to going somewhere else entirely, but frugality and sentimentality won the day.

I practically grew up at 4111 NW 44th Street. I attended services and midweek Bible Studies at Rejoice in the Lord Church every week from the time I was born until Rejoice in the Lord closed its doors when I was eleven. Rejoice gave the building to Lincoln Christian Fellowship, who rented it to a little school (which I attended for a year) in the couple of years before LCFs congregation moved out there. My family, of course, transitioned straight from Rejoice in the Lord to Lincoln Christian Fellowship with barely a hiccup.

Lincoln Christian Fellowship Sign

Back when this was Rejoice in the Lord, I remember running endless circles with one of my hands around this sign’s posts

I was in that building at least once a week (but more often 3 or 4 times a week) up to age 22 when I moved away from Lincoln.

You could say there’s some history between me and there.

I called the pastor, asked about availability on March 9th, about cost to rent the building.

It was free on both counts, for me.

We took it.

Daniel and I say our vows

Daniel and I say our vows–under the same cross that saw me baptized and under which I took my first communion

Wrapping up “Our Story”

June 20th, 2013

This is the final installment in a rather long series about how Daniel and I met–and became engaged. Click on the “Our Story” tag for context.

Two weeks after Daniel and I were engaged, Daniel’s mother and I road-tripped from Lincoln down to Wichita, where I saw the house that was to become my new home. I cooked my first meal in my future kitchen–and entertained Garcia family friends at the same time.

A month later, in November, my car broke down less than a week before I was to travel to Wichita again. I bought a new (used) car, drove it 300 miles to Wichita, and signed the title over to Daniel. We added me to Daniel’s car insurance, licensed the car in Kansas, and then drove it to Topeka for his mom’s family Thanksgiving. From there, we drove it up to Lincoln for my family Thanksgiving. The Sunday after Thanksgiving, we drove it back to Wichita to drop Daniel back at home–and I drove it back to Columbus again. We named the car “Alejandro” in honor of his new “Mexican” owner (hah). Alejandro gained 1200 miles in that crazy week.

Just a month later, I worked my last day in Columbus, traveled to Lincoln where we celebrated Christmas with both of our families, and we traveled back up to Columbus with a moving truck. We packed all my earthly possessions and made a caravan to Wichita. Daniel in the moving van, me in Alejandro, my dad driving Daniel’s car.

We unloaded all my earthly goods (except some clothing, which went to the home of the couple I would be staying with) in Daniel’s house and then returned my parents to Lincoln.

The next two and a half months were a whirlwind of unpacking, house-readying, wedding preparing, and new-life-starting. And then we were married at last.

At which point the story ends…

and begins.

You can catch the rest in real-time (errr…almost) right here on bekahcubed.

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