Hello, Blogspot Friends! Long time, no talk to! Well, at least for those of you I'm not "friends" with on Facebook, anyway.
I have a few days off work for the Christmas holiday, so I thought I'd take some time to sit here and make my Blog active again. I know....it's about time, right? You probably think you're seeing a "ghost" Blog or something, but no...it really is me.
I apologize for being absent so long. Life hit us with some unexpected curveballs starting in July, and Tom & I were just too bummed out to have anything joyful to say on our Blogs. And as my mom always used to say, "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all," which is what I chose to do. In any event, things seem to be on an even keel for now, and we're grateful. Let's hope they stay that way for a while!
So what have all of you been up to these past 6 months? I'm finally at a point where I can share some of what we've been going through since July, but believe me when I say that it's taken me quite a while to get to this point!
Angela moved back home from the Veterinary Assistant/Technician job she had so happily accepted in June in Naples, FL. The company wasn't on the up-and-up like she thought it would be (they currently are being sued by 2 animal owners and 1 former employee), and when she couldn't find another job in that area after a 2-week search, she ran out of money and had to move home. She was DEVASTATED because she loved living in Florida. We were bummed out too because we had hoped she'd finally found her niche in Florida. She had been so happy there.
Once Angela returned home, she suffered from terrible depression, and her chronic anxiety returned. We were very worried about her, and worked to get her into the University of Michigan Psychology Clinic in Ann Arbor thinking they could help her with depression, anxiety and excessive alcohol use that started when she returned from Florida.
In September, Angela went to see her first U of M medical doctor so that they could refer her to the Psychology Clinic. I went with her in order to ask questions and make sure the referral happened. BUT, I got the shock of my life when Angela's blood and urine tests (that were taken and examined right there in the doctor's office lab) showed that she was pregnant! Apparently, she had an idea that she might be pregnant for 3 weeks before that visit and didn't say anything to Tom or me. As you can imagine, Tom & I were shocked, disappointed, embarrassed, and angry too. However, with lots of prayer, and great support from our families and church, we eventually accepted her pregnancy and are now looking forward with great joy to our first grandchild next May 17 (or so). We're grateful that at least Angela is an adult (age 24), and that the father of the baby, Jason, is truly a great guy--very responsible, respectful to us, and he treats Angela like a queen. We really like him! They have plans to get married after the baby is born (don't know the date yet; one big event at a time, ya know? LOL). We are also grateful that as a Christian, Angela never once considered NOT having the baby, and we're proud of the way she and Jason have taken responsibility for this child.
Jason came to live with us in October so he could be closer to Angela and give her support throughout her pregnancy. He used to live way east of here, maybe 45-50 minutes east. He has since gotten a job as a stone/brick mason and is working very steadily. He is 23, spent 4 years in the Army, and has a background in construction and home modeling. We are SO happy that he has been so supportive to Angela during this time.
In mid-November, we had to put our beloved Becky down because she had become very sick. She was 12 1/2, but I was EXTREMELY close to her, as was Tom, and our hearts were broken when she was gone. I sobbed like a baby after I left the vet's office that last time. We haven't gotten another dog yet, but I hope we will soon. Becky's absence has left a huge hole in our house. Her presence is greatly missed. We thank God for the gift of Becky in our lives as she gave us so much unconditional love, kindness and companionship. I hope our next dog will be just as wonderful.
We've also had some financial difficulties in trying to support Angela in Florida and since her return. She was supposed to be collecting unemployment starting July 17, but our ignorant Michigan unemployment office has messed up her file so badly that she hasn't seen a dime yet! In the meantime, no employers want to hire an already pregnant employee, so she's still unemployed. We continue to battle with unemployment and hope to have that resolved soon so that she can receive back-pay from July 17. In the meantime, the janitor at our church, who is a good friend of ours, insisted that Angela take her church cleaning job in November so that Angela could earn some money. She told Angela that she can keep the cleaning job until her pregnancy prohibits her from doing it anymore. Jason goes to the church each week with Angela to handle all the heavy parts of the cleaning job--emptying the garbage, mopping the floors, etc. We're thankful for our friend's generosity in sharing her job with Angela, and to our Church Council for approving this temporary personnel switch.
We actually had a very nice Christmas, and we are so thankful for the gifts of the baby Jesus, our families, and...good food! LOL On Christmas Eve, we attended church and I sang in the choir. Then, Tom, Ang, Jason and me went to Tom's sister's house in Canton (thanks, Jeanette!) for dinner and a gift exchange. We'll be getting together for Christmas with my family this Saturday evening to do the same.
During the past few months, Angela's stomach has "popped" out some, and the baby inside is growing like crazy. Some of her earlier blood tests showed that the baby has a 1 in 418 chance of having one too many chromosomes which would cause severe medical problems which would probably result in the baby's death. We have chosen to ignore this "ratio game" which is really all it is, and instead, continue to pray with our families, our church, and our friends that our Lord will let the baby be born healthy with no problems. So many pregnant moms have the same blood tests with same results only to have healthy babies. There are way too many "false positive results" for us to have much faith in these results.
On January 9, Angela will have her 20-week ultra sound. Her doctor is having the ultrasound performed at the baby high-risk department at Huron Valley Hospital nearby because this department's ultrasound magnification is 3 times stronger and would be able to see if the baby has any physical abnormalities. Again, the odds are that the baby is fine, and we are praying and hoping for the best. In the meantime, Angela has started to feel the baby "fluttering" in her stomach (early kicking) on a regular basis, and this is very exciting.
I apologize for not having any pics to post from Christmas. We totally forgot to take some! We are becoming more absent-minded the older we get.
If you guys could keep our unborn grandchild in your prayers, we would greatly appreciate it. The more prayers, the better, ya know? Thanks for "listening", and I'll try to start posting on my Blog regularly again, I promise!
Blessings to you all on this wonderful birth of our Lord, Jesus!