our first pregnancy || joy after miscarriage

Yesterday, November 28, would be the start of my second trimester. Instead, we are reluctantly navigating the sorrow of a miscarriage. I remember the day I found out I was pregnant. We had been trying to grow our family for a few months. The first month you try, you have so much hope. The second month, you’re still pretty hopeful. By the third month, doubt begins to creep in. So you can imagine the intense feeling of JOY and DISBELIEF when I saw a positive sign. I was a MOM. I am a Mom. Experiencing this miracle for the first time, I suddenly connected with every mother on the planet. I was in love with our baby. The excitement was overwhelming. My baby was number one on my mind. We were able to tell only a few family and friends of our pregnancy. I thank God we did that. The pain, the grief, the uncertainty, the complete sorrow that accompanies a miscarriage should never ever be done alone. It’s so important to walk through this pain with people you can trust. Some days are harder than others. When I need to cry, I cry. The tears come out of nowhere, and for that I thank God. It reminds me how REAL love is. It reminds me how of FAITHFUL God is. My pain is no surprise to Him. I rest in His joy, His strength, His redeeming love. Grant and I are heartbroken and filled with hope, all in the same breath. Our Baby June will forever be in our hearts. We wait for the day we meet our June Baby. Until then, we continue to live and grieve and love. There’s a video link in my profile telling more of the story. I’m choosing to love myself and be vulnerable through sharing this – I want to post just as much sorrow as I do joy in my life. It makes life more real. My prayer is someone can be encouraged through their pain, and as mothers we continue to life each other up.

we missed our flight

last week was CRAZY! i crammed four days of work into two days of work and then we loaded up the car to head to texas for G’s brother’s wedding.

well, because we had to move fast and take care of a lot of things before heading out of town, we miscalculated our timing to get to the parking garage, grab the shuttle, get to the airport, go through security, etc. etc. so we missed our flight. it was a terrible feeling for us both. i have never missed a flight before! ugh. I’m not good with that stuff – now G knows that we should never risk it. EVER. haha. I’d rather sleep in the airport/on the airplane than stress about getting to the airport on time. any who, G rescheduled our flight and all was well.

we took the 6 hour free time we suddenly had to Uber into the city and explore. We had breakfast at Founding Farmers and well, we really weren’t impressed. We sat at the communal table because we didn’t make a reservation. It was 7:30AM. Who makes breakfast reservations? It’s clear we are not city folk. I’ll take Bob Evans “sit down right away” breakfast anyday over fancy restaurants that need breakfast reservations at 7 in the morning!

It has been raining all week, but miraculously, this was a beautiful gloomy day to explore washington, dc.

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we saw the White House – my very first time seeing it from the front side!

I showed G around the Air & Space Museum which he loved.

Then we took an Uber back to the airport, caught our flight, landed in Texas, checked-in to our hotel, grabbed a bite to eat and were in bed by 8PM. It was a long day, but we made the best of it!

Here are some other pictures from the wedding. It was beautiful and fun, but so fast! It feels like we snapped our fingers and it was already time to leave Texas. We had to be back Saturday for another wedding in Maryland, so the quick trip was necessary but still a bummer.

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purpose – like real purpose

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this weekend at church the message is about “the single family.” i’ve been married to grant for 5 short months, so honestly my life has been spent more single than not. y’all know i’m passionate about what a single person is capable of – what a single person can experience during this season, bc that was me. it was my story. i’ve never been shy about how i feel on the topic of being single (just search “single” on this blog & you will see!) there tends to be this invisible timer attached to a single person – as if your time just hasn’t come yet, as if he or she isn’t here yet. now, i’m a newlywed who knows literally nothing on the topic of marriage, but i must say (shout!), marriage won’t complete you. it’s a blessing, absolutely, but it’s no lifesaver. you have purpose no matter what. bottom line. i hope you do feel encouraged that you do matter in the kingdom and god will use you, no matter what your relationship status. remember, he’s bigger than any situation.

meeting the parents.

holy moly canoli! 31 days until we are married. excited, i am!

in the meantime, let’s throw it back to september – – my first trip to texas.

texas. it’s where grant was born & raised & where all of his family still lives.

grant loves texas. he comes by it natural. he’s not one of those guys that talks about texas all the time – but when he does, you can just feel his genuine love for the state. but it’s more than the state itself. it’s the people in texas – – his family.

we planned a quick weekend trip to meet the parents & it happened to be two weekends after we got engaged. i’m so glad it worked out that way. it’s way more fun to travel with your fiancé than with your boyfriend. haha that’s not true, i just wanted to see how it sounded when i wrote it out.

texas was lovely. his parents live in the dallas / fort worth area & the only reason i’m telling you that is because it’s the only thing i really know – – & i barely know that much.

it was so great meeting all the people grant has been talking about since the first day we met. he loves his family.

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my favorite part of the trip was watching his home videos.

if you know me at all, you know i’ve been obsessed with filming life since i was little. luckily my parents shared in this hobby bc we have about 50+ home videos FILLED with first steps, christmas mornings, easter egg hunts, violin concerts & dance competitions. i love home videos.

so you can imagine my excitement when his parents brought out the home videos of my future husband. there is nothing more real & genuine than home videos from the 90’s. it’s pure. no one was expecting anyone to ever watch the videos & therefore people act 100% themselves.

the verdict? he hasn’t changed a bit.  i love him more now that i’ve seen these videos.

but not just the videos.

the whole trip changed the way i see grant. the way he laughs at his dad. the way he hugs his mom. the way he talks to his brother. the way he plays with his nephew. the way he smiles at his cousin. the way he looks at his sister.

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it was a beautiful trip & i can’t wait to go back for a longer stay to enjoy more texas-y activities.

here’s the vlog if you wanna see some of the home video action:

we’re engaged!

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i couldn’t write this story from scratch even if i wanted to.

it’s been quite the journey with mr. grant cardwell. i’ve never had a better year in my life than the one i’ve spent with grant.

he proposed on saturday, august 29, on the beach where we met just one year ago.

our day started out like any other day. grant went to the gym, i went for a long run in the park.

he came over my house and helped do ALL THE THINGS in my yard. like spent the entire day outside while i pretended to clean inside which is really code for nap/netlfix. he’s so good to me.

we went to church service & then headed over to the miller’s where we planned to have dinner. when we parked at their house, grant suggested we go for a walk on the beach.

“should we take the food in the house first?” i asked.

“no, we can do it after our walk.” grant says.

it was a very windy night – just beautiful weather.

we walked down the beach & back – just enjoying the significance of the day & what this beach meant to us.

& then as grant leaned down to put his flip flops back on – he stayed down on one knee, pulled the ring box out of his pocket & asked me to MARRY HIM.

MARRIAGE. IT’S HAPPENING. WATCH THE VLOG BELOWWWW.

i’m still in the clouds. i know one day the excitement will fade – – but thank the lord for all the feels. we are so thankful.

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exhale.

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“it’s okay to not be okay.” – exhale by plumb

i first heard this song as it blasted through my headphones on one of my “forced” long runs. yes, forced. there was time i would run every day, whenever i had the time.

that season has come & possibly gone.

with the addition of a night job to my life schedule (circa october 2014) & the addition of the love of my life (circa december 2014), my free time alone time has dramatically decreased.

this is no ones fault. it’s a season. we hear the “season” talk every other day it seems. i like to say “it’s just a season” or “this season will pass” or “thank the good lord above that THAT season is locked in the pretend-it-never-happened-closet.”

so i’m in a season of overdrive. this is not the season where i flourish – but rather – i just barely make it. i go from thing to thing, day to day, & just do.

& just for the record – – i’m not a do-er. i’m a feel-er. i like to FEEL. i like to be “all-in” with everything i do – but during this season – i’m just getting things done. the faster i can get to the place of netflix & couch & ice cream & sleep, the better.

yuck.

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so during that long run – i heard this beautiful song whispering in my ear to “exhale.”

“don’t be afraid. don’t be ashamed.”

i needed to hear that. i feel like that’s the kinda daily reminder that is kinda obvious. it does no harm to hear that kinda thing on repeat, right?

right.

but seriously – i did feel afraid. i felt afraid that i was failing. as an employee, as a friend, as a daughter, as a sister, as a girlfriend. as a human. the fear of failure can cripple the kinda girl who loves attention & loves affirmation & loves feeling accomplished.

i’m that kinda girl. can i get an amen?

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& then there’s the “don’t be ashamed.” that easy peasy reminder that “you are a daughter of the King – what in the world do YOU have to be ashamed of?!”

well – here’s the real conversation happening in my head: how can you NOT feel ashamed? you’re doing nothing. you’re just do-ing. that’s shameful, right?

no. of course not.

but i was believing the lie.

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up until the point where i spilled my guts to the lord.

i said: i hated this season. he said – treasure it.

i said: but remember last year? remember how happy & how successful & how accomplished i felt?

he said – treasure today.

i said: but bring me back to where i was.

he said – treasure Me.

i said: lord, you just don’t get it.

he said – treasure yourself.

it was hard. it’s still hard.

i caught myself remembering & longing for what was instead of focusing on the blessing of now.

each season has its winds, its waves, its growth & its death. each season deserves pruning & planting & patience.

if you’re struggling in a season that you just wish would pass, i’m with ya. but let’s focus on the treasure. has there ever been a season God hasn’t been aware? does he not use every season to bring his name glory? does each season not bring change & new beauty?

i pray that we exhale – we remember – & we treasure.

but let’s not leave it at that. let’s continue to be honest. bc “it’s okay to not be okay.” & my season of “not okay” might be at a different time then your “not okay” season. we don’t have to pretend. we can support each other & break-free from the “everything is okay.” we can scream “it sucks” bc that’s what heals.

let’s love this conversation & this reality enough that we don’t just leave it. let’s for real treasure it, together.

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