Wednesday, December 29, 2004

close to home

the tsunami news over the past couple of days is staggering, really. didn't find myself affected until i watched an abc report with Ronni tonight. slowly welling emotions right now. not sure if it's grief in the stricktest sense, as i'm not personally bereaved...sort of a displaced, generalized lament mixed with wonder/horror. trying to find the right word... plaintive? kind of hope there isn't a right word.

Ronni sponsors a young girl named Mary through Compassion International. Mary lives in Indonesia. we're praying she and her family are safe. Compassion sent an email saying that the base she attends for school is still intact, but they are going house to house to check on all of the children. not sure how long it might be until we know if she's o.k.

holding Elle in my arms while watching images of a distraught young mother holding her lifeless baby. how do i merit the blessing i enjoy? even less apparent reason for that family's encounter with the curse of death. makes me want to turn off the tv, but somehow that seems like the wrong thing to do.

God grows really large in my mind in situations like this. All 77,000 killed so far are beloved to him, not to mention the pain he bears with each survivor. how does he retain the capacity to care about the various mundane prayers i sent his way today?

Thursday, December 23, 2004

are titles really necessary?

got to use our new snowblower for the first time today.

our next door neighbor, sort of the alpha male of the neighborhood, moved away this fall. he always used to snowblow our driveway for us, making me feel both grateful to not have to break my back and somewhat gender diminished at the same time.

so after he moved, and a young married couple moved in to his house, i figured it was time to step up. the way i had it worked out, i was going to be the neighborhood hero, snowblowing for all the widows and pregnant women and girly men without snowblowers.

of course, just about every other man in the neighborhood bought a snowblower this winter, too, but probably for better reasons. upon waking and showering this morning, eager to redeem my manhood, what should i discover but my neighbor from across the street snowblowing my driveway (thanks Shawn!). what to be done? thankfully, the young couple next door still had a snowcovered driveway. needless to say, they now have a clear driveway, thanks to my ego issues. oh, and to top it off, they're expecting a baby this spring. cha-ching.

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

good news

backing up a little: one of Elle's earlier blood tests had returned a red flag for biotinidase deficiency, a potentially life threatening (but treatable) genetic disorder. got news this afternoon that a subsequent, and much more accurate test, came back completely normal. good news indeed.

it's funny, when i heard the earlier news, i had a strong feeling that it was a false alarm. nonetheless, as the week of waiting passed, i still found myself anxious--mainly about all sorts of other fears: SIDS, car accidents, etc. what's up with that?

Jesus is good; that much i know. In this life, i will have trouble; that much i also know. fortunately the former trumps the latter, but life sure is messier (more organic?) than logic most of the time. relationship is proving both more flexible and stronger than reason.

Sunday, December 5, 2004

one week

Elle's sleeping on my chest right now, so I'm typing a little slow. of course, that shouldn't affect your reading speed, now that i think about it. oh well, brain's not functioning at full speed right now either.

it's been a great week though. very peaceful, all things considered. i was able to take most of the week off of work, which was very helpful. Ronni's feeling much better so far than she was was at the same time after Colin's birth. Caring for Elle has been very relaxed. not sure if it's because we feel more comfortable, or if it's just that she's really easy going. a number of veteran dad's have encouraged me by saying that she'll make up for it in her teenage years.

Colin's the kind of big brother i wish i had been with my first sister. doting, gentle, loving, eager, protective--the whole 9 yards, to really misuse the expression. Elle recognizes his voice and searches him out with her eyes whenever she hears it.

Eva, a friend from church, tells us that people from the church have arranged to make meals for us all month long. amazing. can't imagine having a new baby and not having such a great family and great church. we've had an extraordinary number of gifts and phone calls and cards and offers of help. my sister Amy stayed the night once this week just to take care of Elle and deliver her to Ronni when she got hungry, and take her back when she was full. thanks, Ben.

several cards we've gotten have included prayers for us and Elle. there's something cool knowing the blessing Elle is surrounded with as she enters this broken world. surely goodness and mercy are already already following her.

had to take her for a blood test earlier this week. forgot that i get faint when blood is drawn. thankfully, held it together and didn't pass out. that would have been really embarrasing. oh well, i'm sure i'll find other ways to embarrass her down the road...