Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Here are 10 of the many things for which I am thankful. Forgive me for posting about thankfulness in honor of Thanksgiving- is it a bit too cliche? :) But I definitely need plenty of reminders to stop getting bogged down by difficult things in life and to enjoy the blessings God has given, for they are many. So here it is...

My Thanksgiving Top 10 List

1. My God. The God who loved us so much that He sacrificed His only Son to provide me with a way to Him. The God who runs to meet me, even when I've been off "squandering my inheritance." The God who never gives up on me, even when I feel like giving up myself. The God who guards me with His peace. The God who calls me His, who I can call mine. If I was never given one more blessing in my entire life, a relationship with Him through Jesus Christ would always be blessing enough. More than enough.

2. My husband. You can't beat him. I'm sorry- you just can't! :) He loves me like Christ loves the church, cherishes me, cares for me, encourages me, prays for me, senses my needs and meets them before I even say a thing, loves our son with incredible tenderness and joy, makes me laugh until I cry. He is my favorite person in the world, my very best friend, the man with more integrity and godly character than any man I've ever known.

3. My son. Even though it is a slightly annoying trait, I love that Eli has separation anxiety! I love it because it means that he loves me best! :) How selfish is that? Seriously, though, I love that I get to be the one to rock him when he wakes up in the night, the first one to see his smile in the morning, the lips that kiss him a thousand times a day, the arms that carry him around the house as we go about our daily routine, the smile that makes him giggle, the fingers that tickle him to make him laugh. He is our miracle, our precious, sweet, content little Eli.

4. My sisters, who are my best friends.

5. My parents, who love each other more today than the day they married almost 30 years ago, who are models of faith and godliness and laughter and fun.

6. Dear friends, both near and far, who encourage me and challenge me, who make me want to be more like Christ.

7. A wonderful church home that feels like a family, teaches the Word, and provides so many opportunities to serve.

8. A warm, cozy little house.

9. A job that allows me to work only one day a week so that I can be home with Eli all the rest of the time. And it's fun and interesting to boot!

10. My Grandmom, who, along with my Granddad, is on her knees for me and my family every single morning of every single day, who is my role model in so many ways.

What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving?

Friday, November 21, 2008


Not a lot has been going on at the Wilson house, which is how I like it! :) I am such a creature of habit, and a home-body, and a big believer in routine, especially for kids... all of which makes for wonderful days spent at home or outside with my sweet little Eli! I love motherhood, being the one to take care of this precious little guy. When we got pregnant I thought I wasn't ready to give up my career, my independence, my life without kids, but God knew that I was ready! There isn't anything I would rather be doing now than being Eli's mom.

Anyway, not a lot has been going on here besides sickness! :) I came down with a really bad cold on Tuesday, and I had to work on Wednesday whilst feeling miserable. I could barely walk out of there after hours standing in the lab finishing the project I've been working on. But I came home to my sweet husband, who had taken the day off of work to take care of Eli while I worked, who rented and watched without complaining "Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants 2" just because I was sick and wanted to watch a girlie movie, who gave me the world's greatest massage... What a guy!

I'm feeling so much better today, thankfully, but now Eli is sick! :( We went to his 6-month well-child check-up yesterday, where he was proclaimed perfectly healthy, and he got his vaccines. But then last night he woke up every single hour crying and would only calm down if we held him and rocked him for a long time. It was a rough night! I was assuming that he was just feeling poorly because of the shots, but then this morning he had a temperature of 101.2 degrees and these little "sores" on his tongue. I freaked out and called the pediatrician, who said simply, "Oh, he has the mouth ulcer virus." Duh. :) Apparently there is a virus going around that kids and babies are prone to get that results in fever and mouth sores. Check, check. It will just run it's course in a couple of days and he'll be as good as new soon. Until then- tylenol, fluids, and plenty of cuddling. Can do.

The weather is COOOOOOLD! I always long for cold weather by the time that it reaches November and is still 80 degrees, but then once that first good cold front hits I start complaining. :) I miss the warmth! :) But I am super-glad that it is cold now, because it definitely feels like the holidays! And I couldn't be happier about that! We have our turkey, which we'll cook the day after Thanksgiving so that, even though we'll be with family on Thanksgiving, we'll still have leftovers afterwards for lots of turkey sandwiches. :) We have all our decorations ready to go, to be put up on Friday. We're cutting down our tree at the tree farm on Saturday. And the Christmas music made its debut last night, despite my resolution to not listen to it until Thanksgiving. I'm so bad. :)

Here's to a good weekend for all of us! Enjoy!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Teething? HELP!

So I think that Eli is teething, because I can't pin his symptoms on anything else. But I can't feel or see a tooth in his mouth anywhere, which is the perplexing thing. Anwyay, he has, in the past week, begun to drool excessively, bite on anything he can get into his mouth, refuse to eat more than an ounce or two at a time, chew on the nipple of the bottle instead of sucking on it, wake up several times in the middle of the night (very unlike him), and fuss like crazy during the day (very, VERY unlike him). He doesn't have a fever, and he otherwise seems fine.

To all you moms out there... Do you think Eli is teething? Are these the symtoms? Why can't I feel or see any teeth in his mouth? Any advice you can give would be much appreciated! I feel bad for him because he seems like he's hurting, and I'm getting a little worn out by all this fussing and waking up at night. Good thing he's so darn cute! :)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Our Miracle

I forget all too easily all the amazing things God has done for me over the course of my life. There are several times in my life that I look back on regularly to remind me of God's timing, God's wisdom, and God's provision. Times that had me broken, wondering, "Why is this happening?" And then God stepped in, taught me, picked me up, provided for me, and showed me in big ways that He is the Only One I can count on, that in any situation, good or bad, He is the reward.

All that to say that, of course, Eli's birth makes this list. But for some reason it is easy for me to forget, as I go about the day-to-day tasks of changing diapers, feeding bottles, cleaning up toys, etc., about the miracle that God performed in His life. Today I was reminded.

Our memory card on our camera filled up today after I took a video of Eli rolling over. (He has gotten the hang of this feat so well that he will not stay on his stomach for anything! I had to hold him in place while I pressed the record button on the camera, lest I miss it!) We bought a huge memory card so that we wouldn't have to worry about cleaning it off very frequently, and it contained all the pictures that we have taken since Eli's birth, which is, needless to say, a whole lot. So before I deleted all the pictures and videos of Eli's birth from the memory card, I wanted to check to make sure that we had them saved onto the computer. And I came across the videos Eric took of Eli's birth.

I was majorly out of it then- after 14 hours of labor, several doses of something that made me really sleepy, an epidural, magnesium to control the blood pressure, and a whole bunch of medicines to keep my kidneys and liver functioning long enough to deliver Eli, I could barely hold my hand up, much less pay attention during the c-section. I remember the nurse showing Eli to me. I remember giving him a kiss before they took him away, and that's it. So these videos were amazing for me to watch.

They show our tiny little 2 1/2 pound son lying on the table as the doctors gave him oxygen and got him hooked up to the monitors. He is crying this tiny, quiet little cry. The doctors are all commenting on how small he is for his age, on how growth-restricted he was. He is skin and bones, little more than a foot long, born way too early. His tiny arms and legs are waving in the air, and he just keeps on crying that tiny little cry.

And despite the fact that he was born prematurely, despite the fact that he is tiny and will need much medical intervention to get him through the first months of his life, he is perfect.

In Eli, we got a glimpse of the miracle of God knitting a child together in the mother's womb. We're not supposed to see a baby so young, so small- they have far to go before they are "ready." But God gave us a window to look through, to see the perfection that is a baby being formed. The fingers are all there. The toes are all there. The eye lashes, the fingernails, the peach fuzz hair. Not to mention the beating heart, the inflating lungs, the vast network of blood vessels... Perfect.

As I watched those videos I cried. I cried for the miracle that God performs in knitting each child together in his mother's womb, for allowing us to glimpse that sooner than most people get to see it. And I cried for the fact that, as I watched those videos, I held my 11 1/2 pound son who was babbling and chewing on his hands and kicking his legs. He is our miracle, and I praise God for allowing us to be his parents, for allowing me to have this time in my life when, in the most dire of circumstances, He stepped in and worked mightily. I am in awe.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

6 Months

My dear, sweet Eli,

Tomorrow you will be 6 months old! Daddy and I can't believe that you have been part of our lives for so long- the time has flown by. There were times at the beginning of your life when we would sit for hours in the NICU looking at you, so tiny in your incubator, that we thought we would never have "normal" days. It seemed impossible that you would ever make it out of the hospital, much less be free of the wires, tubes, and medicines that sustained your life for so long.

And look at you now, son! You're as healthy as they come- active, talkative, happy, and strong. And even though you're still small, you amaze us every day with the way that you've grown and how you learn something new every day. We LOVE our tiny guy!

Do you know that your smile melts my heart? Do you know that the very best moment of my day is looking over the rail of your crib in the morning to see you squirming and squealing with delight that I'm there? Do you know that I go into your room to watch you sleep at least 5 times every night? Do you know that the feel of your little body snuggled against mine is the most peaceful, wonderful feeling in the world? Do you know that your laugh brings gladness to my heart? Do you know that I cry tears of joy almost every day as I rock you in my arms, praising the Lord for the MIRACLE that He has given to us in you?

Eli, you are everything we prayed for. Before you were born, your Daddy and I would pray every night for your heart. We cared deeply for your physical health, but more than anything we wanted the Lord to give you a heart after His own. We prayed for a gentle, sweet spirit that was evident from the very beginning, and this is exactly what the Lord gave to us in you. Even strangers who meet you comment on how sweet you are, and Daddy and I daily marvel at the beautiful personality God has given to you. We still pray for you every day and every night, begging God to call your sweet heart to Himself and to use you mightily all the days of your life.

Here are a few of your "things" at 6 months of age...
-You smile all the time! You're a very happy, content little guy that very rarely cries or fusses. (Except at feeding time- you've never been a big fan of eating!)
-You can push up on your arms and roll over from your belly to your back.
-You just developed "tickle-ish-ness." Even the simple act of changing your diaper tickles you! Your little laugh is adorable.
-You "bounce" all the time. Your jumparoo is your favorite place to be, and even when you're not in it you bounce up and down in our laps constantly!
-Separation anxiety! Though this can be somewhat disconcerting when I need to leave you with your grandparents or aunts for a little while, it makes me smile that I am the one you want at all times! I am so happy to be that person in your life.

We are so thankful for you, our little Pumpkin. We love our little family and look forward eagerly to all that the Lord has in store for us. We promise to parent you to the very best of our abilities, always relying on the Lord for wisdom and guidance as we raise you. We will strive to make our family the safest, happiest, most fun, most secure place you can be.

"I'll love you forever; I'll like you for always. As long as you're living, my baby you'll be."

Happy 6 months birthday, Eli!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Simple Things

Last weekend the whole Bergstrom side of the family went camping... Eric and Eli and me, my sisters and their husbands and kids, and my parents. We have done this twice a year for as long as I can remember. As little girls we would look forward all summer to the fall camp-out and all winter to the spring camp-out. We would pack up the car and drive 2 1/2 hours to Daingerfield State Park, asking every 3 minutes, "Are we there yet?" We longed to finally climb out of the car and run down to see the lake. We wanted to swim out to the dock and rate each other's dives on a scale of 1-10. We couldn't wait to feed bread to the ducks and use our Snoopy fishing poles to reel in perch from the fishing pier. We loved to hop on the back of the paddle boat as my parents paddled us all around the lake, looking at the banks for turtles and stopping at the deepest part in the middle of the lake to jump off and swim. We somewhat dreaded the long walk around the lake, but my parents made it fun by playing games the whole way and bribing us with snow cones from the camp store if we made it all the way around without complaining. At night we counted the minutes until it was dark enough to build the campfire, and we would sit for hours around it, listening to funny stories from my dad and eating the S'mores my mom made for us. And we'd climb into the little bed at night, all snuggled close together, and drift off to sleep as we listened to my parents play Scrabble together in the candlelight. And we'd dream all night of all the fun things that awaited us the next morning.

These are simple things. Things that kids today may think boring and silly. They might rather be playing video games or watching tv. But I can't think of anything more healthy for a child, for anyone, really, than to enjoy the simple things in life. I am deeply thankful for my parents, who taught us to love looking for bugs and lizards beneath fallen trees, who chased us around a field in a game of tag, who made tossing bread to ducks an exciting activity, who showed us that a weekend spent outside with no communication with anyone or anything besides our family and nature was the very best way to spend our time.

And I love that we're still doing it to this day! Daingerfield is still my favorite place in Texas. Our bi-yearly trips are the weekends I look forward to most the whole year. It is a joy to bring my husband to this place where I spent so many days of my childhood and to watch as he and my brothers-in-law fall in love with these weekends too. It was an even greater joy to bring our little son to this place, to put him in the carrier and walk with him around the lake, to lay on a blanket with him in the shade as the breeze blew leaves all around us, to see him interact with his grandparents and aunts and uncles and cousins, to put him to bed at night in a little cabin and let him fall asleep to the sounds of his family talking and laughing around the campfire outside.

I want Eli and any other children we may have to realize that the simple things are the best things. I want him to look forward all year to looking for turtles from the back of his Grandpa's paddle boat, to running around in the field chasing his cousins, to finding a lizard under a log on the walk around the lake. I want him to know, even as the world changes and bad things happen all around us, that family is safe and fun and the very best place to be. I want to give him the simple things just as my parents gave them to me, and I want him to love them just as much as his parents do. And I want us to praise God together as a family for the many beautifully simple things that He has given us to enjoy, for they are so many.