Baking. I find it sooooooo therapeutic. My last days of clinical are just around the corner, which gave me the perfect excuse to spend the late afternoon mixing and measuring and stirring and sneaking tastes of batter today. It was a blessing to have this on my to-do list; a much-needed mental break to focus on something simple that I so much enjoy.
Life has been a whirlwind for the past two months. I feel like I am always saying that life has recently been a whirlwind… or especially busy, crazy, stressful, etc. Maybe this is just how life is for the most part? Regardless, I feel like I’ve been on a roller coaster since about mid June.
JUNE. The month our first floor renovation started to get real. In one single week, while Jeremy was in Europe, our house started seemingly falling apart. A rogue pipe that we uncovered from the floor threatened to derail having the floors refinished. Our electrician was a no-show the day before our floor-refinishers planned to come, leaving the entire apartment sans electricity. And after smelling a gas leak [and having the gas shut off and locked over the weekend, leaving four of our tenants without gas and hot water], I was told we’d need to replace our gas line that feeds the attic, first floor, and basement… to the tune of about double what we had left in our dwindling bank account. Oh and by the way, they’d need to tear up some of that fresh drywall we just put in. Lord. Have. Mercy.
Thanks to incredibly caring friends and family eager to encourage, I miraculously kept my sanity (for the most part) that week. And thanks to generous parents willing to float us a last-minute emergency loan, we made it through the gas line debacle. Jeremy spent the month of July on the first floor, working every single day to complete the rest of the project without the help of contractors and professionals. My incredible parents came for several days to help with some of the heavy lifting, mainly the installation of all the nuts and bolts of the kitchen and most of the bathroom. Between clinicals and school, I spent afternoons, evenings, and days off helping as much as I could.
The deadline was August first. And so for the month of July, everything was all about the first floor. We lived and breathed that massive project. By the end of the month, our own apartment was a war zone. It seriously looked like a tornado had been through. Laundry was piled up, there was no ice in the freezer, no food anywhere in the apartment, and dishes/junk/clothes everywhere.
We finished at 11:58pm on July 31st, and the place looked GOOD. Our friends had already started moving stuff in, and we were finally starting to see the payoff of all the work. We retired to our own place for good. Passed out and rested a little. And then started putting our own apartment back together, because after all we would have a baby arriving in just a couple months. Oh em gee.
Just when I was starting to feel like we were getting a bit of a handle back on life, we had a bit of unwelcome news the first week of August. Jeremy’s insurance plan (which I had been planning to join once my own student health insurance ran out at the end of August) changed. Adding a spouse, which originally costed an additional $2,000 and change would now cost us over $6,000. In other words: totally no longer an option.
I spent the last week or so looking into other options. An IL insurance plan that accepts people with pre-existing conditions (aka seven months of pregnancy), some sort of partial option with Jeremy’s insurance, Medicaid, getting through a birth uninsured. Its been a humbling, somewhat rattling experience, with our son’s due date slightly over one month away. And new this week came the discovery that the National Health Service Corps (the organization that pays for my grad program) never paid my summer tuition. Ohhhhkay, hello, new problem.
I chuckle a little to myself whenever someone asks me about baby prep, how we’re decorating the nursery and whether we’re done with it yet. Let me give you a little sneak peak of what “the baby’s room” looks like just now:
This season has produced in me a keen awareness of my need for God’s provision. It’s been a rough couple months, but it hasn’t been all bad news and constant fretting. God continues to show his faithfulness, and to bless me in incredible ways. For example:
1. My husband has been an absolute gem. I mean this guy should write a book on how to be married to a pregnant wife, because he’s got it down. I’ve been struck by both his kindness toward me and his steadiness in the midst of all the ups and downs. His faith has been an incredible encouragement to me, and a reminder that God has already gifted us with the ultimate provision by saving us from sin and adopting us as His children forever. Earthly trials, no matter how significant, do not have the ability to separate us from the love of God in Christ. And as one of my favorite passages of Scripture says of God, for he knows our frame; he remembers that we are dust. He knows us. He’s got us.
2. We shop at Aldi now, which is THE BEST. Have you ever shopped at Aldi? We started exclusively doing groceries at Aldi because it is significantly cheaper than anywhere else, but we’ve really come to enjoy it. I’m so thankful this store exists, and every time I check out I seriously feel like they just didn’t charge me for half of the stuff in my cart.
3. I’ve had a super healthy normal pregnancy. The significance of this cannot be overstated. Do you know it costs half as much to have a home birth as it does to have the least-expensive scenario of a hospital birth? I’m so thankful this is even an option for us.
4. Our friends and family are THE BEST. We’ve been just showered with gifts, love, encouragement, and practical help at nearly every turn.
5. My mother is coming. And lest you think, “oh how fun, this must mean just seeing family and relaxing for a little while,” you do not know my mother. Mom coming into town does not only mean fun times with someone I love and enjoy very much. This woman is a GET-ER-DONE-ER. I mean a SERIOUS take-care-of-business type of lady. The fact that she is coming in a couple weeks is maybe the sole reason I have any hope that we will ever have a room for the baby that does not look like the disaster shown above.
So this is a ridiculously long post which is essentially a jumbled mess of what’s going on a bit in my life, mind, and heart over the past couple months. It’s all I’ve got for now, and I apologize for the disorganization of my thoughts! Keep us in your prayers over the next month, and before you know it I’ll have a little man to introduce to you. Xoxo.