Friday, September 19, 2008


I went to a c-section the other day for a mom who had labored and did not progress. She had gestational diabetes, which tips off a red flag for me because those babies can be born with a host of problems. Particularly in the situation of a mother who does not or cannot control her diabetes well, her blood sugar is usually running high all the time. Consequently, the baby's sugar is high, and the baby's pancreas is kicking out insulin to combat it. Insulin is a growth hormone, AND it interferes with the production of a chemical in the baby's lungs that helps them mature. So you get a huuuuuge baby (usually born a couple of weeks early because they're so big - between 9 and 10 lbs) with lungs that are not quite up to snuff. Furthermore, when the baby's born, its pancreas hasn't gotten the message yet that it doesn't need to keep putting out all the insulin, so what blood sugar the baby DOES have quickly gets eaten up. So now you have a baby that looks like it was inflated with a bike pump (they're a lot chunkier than 9-10 lb babies whose moms were not diabetic), with respiratory distress, and a blood sugar of 15 (we want it well over 40). Ugh.

So this baby was born to a diabetic mother at 38 weeks gestation, and I think he may have been even a little earlier than that. I was expecting a large baby, but not a large baby who wasn't breathing and had no heartbeat (I don't know why - it was an otherwise uncomplicated c-section). I haven't had to do CPR in a long time on a baby, and of the many times I've done it, the outcome has never been good (those babies were far, far worse off, though). Praise God, though, after a minute of "one-and-two-and-three-and-breathe-and-" he started to sputter and cry, turned pink, and as far as I know, is living happily ever after. I'm not sure if the parents fully realize that their child already received a second chance (they were completely unaware of what was going on on the other side of the room). But life is fragile, you know? The whole of it is a miracle, really. I'm so thankful to see these miracles on a regular basis, and have the honor of being useful in some of them.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

This is me.

This is how I feel: like a deer stuck in headlights. Or Molly stuck in a camera flash. I finally went to Kinko's yesterday to FedEx my grad school application. I chickened out at the last minute because I thought for sure that I had used a wrong word in one of my essays (aunt Nancy: think of my "indigent" vs. "indigenous" incident on my resume) so I had to come home and look it up. So last night Matt and I went to Wok In Wok Out (our fave Chinese haunt) and dropped the application stuff off at FedEx. Parting with all that paperwork suddenly made me feel so vulnerable. I mean, are they really picky over there at MSU? Or is it like applying for a nursing job: "You have a pulse? And a licensed that hasn't expired? When can you start?"

Whatever the outcome, I'm glad I applied. I have learned that God is very obvious about keeping doors wide open if they're meant to be open, and He shuts them very readily if they're meant to be shut. So far the door's been open, so I'll keep trusting. And if it shuts, He must have something better in mind...

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Whoopin' it up Old Order style

We had a fabulous time in Shipshewana! We stayed at a B&B, shopped, ate good Amish food, AND.......went on a buggy ride through the country with an Amish man!!! It was so cool! See, Mom and I know tons about the Amish. We read Beverly Lewis books, so we have cred. So when we were offered a buggy ride by an Old Order Amish gentleman, we leaped at the opportunity to have our deepest questions answered at last. He initially just took us on a little trot through town, but we really wanted to see the country-side and he agreed to take us for a much longer tour. He was a retired farmer who is a minister within their district, has ten kids and 32 grandkids, and a great sense of humor. Out of respect for their belief against having their picture taken, I didn't get too camera-happy on the ride. Surprisingly, as much as Matt makes fun of my Amish fiction novels, they're actually pretty accurate in their portrayal of the Amish. See? I totally have Amish cred.

And Emrys: I have never inserted a microwave in a camera, nor a camera in a microwave. I mean, seriously. It's not like I live in a trailer.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

I'm so here, I swear!

I haven't uploaded new pictures in a while. This random shot from Tucson has absolutely nothing to do with anything, but is fun.

I actually have had people ask why I haven't posted lately!! Get outta here! I'm thrilled people actually read this! Here's some goings-on around here:

1. Got a new camera that hopefully doesn't die. We have awful luck with cameras and microwaves. So as soon as I have a chance to fiddle with how to upload pictures from it, I'll post some new pictures!

2. Molly slipped on wet grass while chasing a stick and bent her tail. Not that that has had any significant impact on anything, but it's funny to say that our dog basically broke her tail! hahahaha!!

3. We had a fabulous time with my family at the Farm over Labor Day. It was an incredibly beautiful weekend and the perfect wrap-up to the summer. We hung out and relaxed and floated in the pond like Cheerios in a bowl of milk. Had a surprise birthday party for my youngest cousin, Shelby, ate amazing meals, and laughed our butts off as per usual.

4. Matt's enjoying his job and actually being able to say that he's fully employed by a company. :D

5. I put studying my "Complete Idiot's Guide to Statistics" on the back burner to obsess over writing a personal statement for Michigan State University. MUCH easier said than done. I wrote one, hated it and trashed it. Wrote another one, feel better about it, but am still kind of biting my nails over it. My friend didn't love it much, but the nurse practitioner with whom I work loved it. I'll still have to bite down a few more nails. Dang, if I'm this nuts over an entrance essay, what will the real deal actually be like????

6. AWANA, the good old Baptist Wednesday night Bible club started up this past week. Matt was asked to be a leader for the junior high boys, so he'll be very involved. I'm a helper on the nights that I'm not working. I'd never been to AWANA (no idea what it stands for!), but it's a pretty big thing. Many of the kids start off with AWANA when they're three or four years old, and they start memorizing Scripture right off the bat. I figure it'll help me learn verses too, so not a bad thing at all!

7. Matt has become the butt of many jokes at church because he's 41. Only out of love, only out of love. And mostly because nobody can believe it. (Is it the baby face or is it the junior high humor?? You decide.)

8. The proverbial bus pulled up at the hospital last week and every woman in West Michigan had a baby at once. Needless to say, I wanted the job behind Door #2.

9. I'm heading to Shipshewana tomorrow with my mom for a few days. We're staying at a B&B, ready for some good old Amish fun.

10. Next week Matt and I are going to the Wisconsin Dells for a vacation. We had planned on going to Massachusetts for vacation this fall, but with the price of gas being what it is, we decided to save that $$ for next year since we'd like to make it to California again. We're trying to keep our vacations within a day's drive as much as possible anyway. So we'll kick back, kayak, hike, play at an indoor waterpark, whatever we can do to have some fun!

That's about it around here! I hope I get some neat pics in Amish country to share soon!