Saturday, August 15, 2009
Asher continues to be a joy though parenting can often have its challenges. He really likes taking baths and he always enjoys just hanging out with Sonny and I. We do not always even hold him, he is often content just being in our presence and hearing us talk- I think this is another illustration of how the Lord wants us to be with Him (just delighted to be in His presence). Asher LOVES his dad- Sonny gets the biggest smiles in the world from Asher- it is precious!
Being a mom is great but can also be very challenging in learning how to balance motherhood and wifehood. One thing that I clearly heard from the Lord when Asher was first born was that I still needed to pursue a close relationship with my husband.
So many people had told Sonny that I would forget about him when Asher was born and I know the Lord wanted me to be diligent to not live up to that 'advice.' It is not right for a husband to get left out once a baby is born- it simply is NOT what the Lord wants! Yes, we love our son, but our marriage is our first ministry from the Lord and if we are not working hard to grow our marriage, our parenting will not be good at all. The first week that Asher was born, I knew that I heard God tell me to be very diligent to love my husband. While I was tired and so emotionally drained, He told me that He would give me the strength I would need to do all that He wanted me to do. Even though I was extremely exhausted, I spent alot of time letting Sonny know that he was my best friend and that I loved him so much. I tried to encourage him that what people had said was just from the world and that Asher would not be the one object of my affection. It was such a great week in that I knew I was being obedient to the Lord in loving my husband. The Lord was with me to give me the strength to do it all and He used Sonny so much to strengthen me when I got overwhelmed with being a new mom. Marriage is amazing!! Motherhood is amazing too!!
On the note of marriage, Sonny and I got to go on a date the first week after Asher was born- it was amazing. Nothing great as far as a fancy restaurant, but it was such a sweet and refreshing time with the two of us...
Friday, August 14, 2009
After some recommendations from different people, I decided to finally set up a blog to update yall about our family. I cannot promise that I will be diligent in updating this but I will sure try. I just started work again today and while I did miss Sonny and Asher, I really love being able to work at Rosehill. I am teaching world geography (9th grade) and worldview (12th grade) and I am only working Monday, Wednesday, and every other Friday. This job is truely amazing!!
Sonny and I are still working at Terra Verde and continue to see the Lord do great things. We have been here for 3 1/2 years and love to see how the Lord has grown and continues to grow the students. It is such a joy to work at this church with these wonderful students!!
As you may know, our first son Asher Sullivan Howard was born on June 14th, 2009. It was a pretty tough day for all three of us!! I hear about these women that have extremely short labors and that just was not the case for us!! I started having small contractions on Friday, June 12th but we just went on with life as we had been told to do. About 9 am on Saturday morning I noticed that the contractions were coming closer together so I let the midwife know and she recommended that we head up there within the next couple of hours (she expected that I was in very early labor).
We arrived at the hospital (St. Luke's) around 12pm on Saturday and unfortunately I was not dialated at all yet I was continuing to have contractions. The midwife said that she did not want us to go home because we lived so far from the hospital and said that we should try to speed up the labor by intense walking. Sonny took that very literally and we did the fastest walking I have ever done for about an hour. When she checked again, I was progressing, but very slowly. We continued the vigorous walking and at 5 pm I was about 5 cm. From 5pm until 3 am we did more walking but since the contractions were intensifying, we were not able to walk as much. By 3 am I was still only at 5 cm. The midwife kindly suggested that we try to speed up the labor with pitocin since I was in pain but not progressing. Through tears, I accepted and was put on an IV. While this did speed up the dialation process, it intensified the pain of the contractions. By 7 am I was 9 cm but was completely exhausted and in an enormous amount of pain. The midwife (her name is Titi) kindly told me that with my exhaustion we needed to explore some different options than what we were currently doing. She basically implied that if I did not do anything else, I would not be able to birth the baby on my own because I was so tired and I would most likely end up having a c-section. The only way to avoid this was to have the epidural. Reluctantly I agreed and was given the medicine after 19 hours of active labor. She told us to rest and that she would come back in an hour or so to check on us and try to finish the labor. We both took and hour and half nap and by 8:45am on Sunday we began the final stages of the labor. At 9:29am on Sunday, June 14th, our baby boy finally came out. I was so tired, I did not even have enough energy to cry! It was finally over! We named him Asher Sullivan Howard and were able to go home on Monday at about noon thus entering a brand new season with our son! Oh, and I have to mention that he weighed 9lbs 13oz which explains in part why the labor was so difficult!