Today we are not only celebrating Thanksgiving Day but also a birthday!
I can’t believe our caboose is now two years old. This time two years ago I went to my routine checkup at the doctor’s office. Only this time… I didn’t get to leave! I’ll never forget the words that came out of the nurse’s mouth as she checked my blood pressure, “did you run up the stairs when you came in?” “Uh, No…” I told her, why would she think that? She told me that my blood pressure was pretty high and that she would give me a minute to relax and then check it again. After checking it again, she asked me if my blood pressure had ever been high. Again, I said, “Uh, no…why do you ask?” It was in that moment that I was beginning to understand what was happening. The nurse left the room and quickly returned with the doctor, who began asking me a bunch of questions.
Doctor: “Do you feel dizzy?”
Doctor: “Are your ankles swollen?”
Doctor: “Do you feel nauseous?”
I felt normal! Then she proceeded to tell me that my blood pressure was so high that she wouldn’t be surprised if I started having seizures… after that, the only thing I remember was the number 160/100. I could see her talking to me, but I was not really processing all she said. She told me that I was going to go on upstairs to the hospital and have this baby today. “Wait, what…” I said. I haven’t packed a bag, my parents aren’t here, it’s three weeks early I probably need to call my husband! Lots of thoughts were running through my brain. The last thing she said to me was that I could call my husband, but we wouldn’t wait to get things started, so tell him to hurry.
Ok… so I grabbed my cell phone, shaking I called my husband and tried to tell him what was going on. Later he told me I had made absolutely no sense on the phone so he figured he better come to the hospital. My second call was to my parents to see how soon they could get to Fayetteville and finally, I called two of the first ladies I’d met when I moved to Arkansas Wendy and Karla, to see if each could take one of my older children for the evening. After that everything went really fast and our third child, a daughter had come into the world around 4:15 that afternoon.
We ended up having to stay in the hospital for a bit longer than normal until they could regulate my blood pressure. Finally the day before Thanksgiving we were able to go home and finally be together as a family of five. (six if you could the giant dog). I’ll never forget the next day. It was Thanksgiving day and I had bought everything we needed to cook a full Thanksgiving meal. Only, I didn’t really feel like cooking. Daniel stepped up to the plate and offered to cook everything! He said, “just tell me where your recipes are and I’ll get everything ready for a late afternoon meal.” “Hmmmm…” I thought to myself, looked at him and said, “I don’t really have recipes written down, I just do it from memory.”
Now, for those of you that know my husband, you know that he is a process person. Everything has its place, processes are written down and followed exactly in order to always have a successful outcome. And, while at this point he was probably ready to strangle me, he didn’t let it show. He proceeded to pick up a sharpie and write directly on each ingredient how much he needed for each dish. Some hours later, we had a wonderful Thanksgiving Day meal that he cooked all by himself. Love him!
Since that day, I have never cooked a full Thanksgiving Day meal. We have been blessed with wonderful friends (Lee & Greg) that have invited us over to join in and celebrate with their family. I bring the crockpot mac n’cheese (because we’re from Alabama where you have mac n’cheese on Thanksgiving) and everything else is taken care of. What a blessing!!
There are so many things for me to be thankful for; God’s Grace… because I’m a sinner saved by it, my husband, my three kiddos, my parent’s, my sister and her family, Daniel’s mom and siblings (and all of our extended family). I’m thankful for the Lord bringing us to Fayetteville where we have made some really great lifelong friends. As I think back to this day two years ago, I will forever be thankful for the wisdom of the doctors and nurses who helped bring our little caboose into this world three weeks early for both her safety and mine.
Thinking back, I wasn’t ready for number three to arrive when she did, but I quickly remembered that it’s usually not my timing that matters. I’m usually impatient for things I want when I want them and worried when things happen too fast or I feel unprepared. But then I remember the Lord has His own perfect timing and everything is part of His perfect plan for me. So, I am Thankful most for a God that knows my every need and provides exactly what is needed in His perfect time.