Ready or Not . . . Now a Mom

            – Ready of Not . . . Now A Mom –

March.jpg

‘Push’ – The last word from my last post. (1*)

Yes, it may only have four letters, but is can sure sound like it has six, eight, twelve, fifteen, or even more. When would that be? When someone is helping a women who’s close to delivering a baby by saying “PUUUUUUUUUUSH ! “

That was the word both my doctor and sister, off and on, said to me for about one hour in the delivery room. That was also the word I needed to hear a lot sooner than everyone expected. After only five hours since that first sign, (*2) that word Puuuush was a must.

The last time that word was said for me on March 9th in 1987 was a few seconds before my new life as a mother began.

hands-holding-a-newborn-baby-vector-796500.jpg

 

 

Is this for real? Did I just now have a baby?

 

 

 

My doctor was holding a baby girl, born at 11:19 that morning, and soon passed that seven pound three ounce treasure over to me. But I wasn’t just, after hours of incredible pain, holding the baby I knew I’d have someday. Thoughts of that intense pain I had just endured instantly vanished because an instant, adorable little treasure was now in my arms. That piece of gold I was holding was my very own daughter Cassie, Cassie Angelyn Houstoun.  

 

shutterstock_173285570.jpg

 

To be continued.

1* – press here to read my last post

2* – press here to read about that first sign IT WAS TIME!

If you want to read the entire story, grab it in book or kindle form through Amazon – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs  and read more about her on her website, mariannesmemoirs.com.

Ready or Not . . . PUSH !

                – Ready or Not . . . PUSH ! –

images

Pick a word you’re pretty sure you know what it means but you really don’t. That is, you don’t until you experience it. The word I’m talking about is ‘contraction‘. Yep, I finally was learning what that word REALLY meant.

The morning of March 9, 1987  I, a pregnant nineteen year old, woke up early a bit more uncomfortable than normal. Then, pondering if I should get up . . .

. . . my water broke.

images.jpg

 

–  “EEK!”  –

 (1* Click to read what led up to this unforgettable moment) 

The saying ‘Scared silly’ fit’s perfectly right here, knowing my new life as a mother was about to begin.

As soon and my dad left for work, out popped “MOM! QUICK!” as my thoughts took over a mile a minute.

What’s all this going to be like? How long will this take? I can already tell this is not gonna be fun. NO! Not the next contraction already!

My mother, your typical 55 year old driver who normally took backroads to go anywhere, zoomed right along that freeway, by-passing all other cars.

I’m at the hospital now. It’s actually happening. I can’t believe it!

I don’t dare go into detail what took place. Having my older sister right by my side sure helped. I felt she was a ‘pro’ having had her youngest child just a few years before. Contraction after contraction went by. The increasing of the pain and frequency seemed to be far above what I expected.

clock2clock 1clock2

 

 

 

 

 

 

Five hours felt like five years, but at the same time felt five minutes. I’ll never forget something I finally told my doctor. “I feel I need that epidural stuff now being I’m so young, and going to be a single mom. I don’t think I’m really mature enough to go through it all. If it’s this painful, and I most likely have hours still to go . . . ”

Please oh please oh please let that be a good enough excuse to TAKE THIS PAIN AWAY! 

For the life of me, I’ll never forget her reply.

“Too late. Time to push.”

To be continued.

_______________________________________________

If you want to read the entire story, grab it in book or kindle form through Amazon – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blogs, mariannesmemoirs.com.

 

 

Ready or Not, Her New Life Soon Begins

         – Ready or Not, Her New Life Soon Begins –

 

ec58bf0d437da63dd1fd40ab41a4c229

 

How was your break from any routine life this last month or so? Have you gotten life all back to normal? A few months back, I took a break from sharing bits and pieces of my book called God and Your Pillow.  With projects, the holidays, visitors, plus more, I wasn’t able to keep up with sharing more about my book. Finally, with things slowing down, I’m now back to sharing more about the trial I went through, hoping to encourage others going though an unplanned pregnancy. But I also want to touch the hearts of all, showing that God is there with His perfect plans at His perfect time.

For those of you who have not read my last posting on this subject, or need a fresh reminder of my last, I’ll have you read it now before going on next week.                     Click  here to read. –  I’ll wait till you’re done.

LIFE_SELF-DOWNTIME-MEDITATION_TB-938x535.jpg

Glad you’re back. As you wait till next week when I continue, here is a bit more I want to share.

I grinned big time when something dawned on me during this break. My last story I wrote months ago, the story you just read, shared my last day I needed to only think of me, myself, and I. The first new writing after this long brake explains when my new life began. Perfect timing ! Perfect time to end my old me, and perfect time to start the new me.

Do you ever think how even something simple as that, like the perfect break between my writing, is in God’s hand. I know I didn’t plan that. I’d much rather think of something as simple as that to be in His hand than to just think ‘oh, that’s cool,’ and leave it at that. Are you like that? Do you find that the simplest things that bring you a smile are still a part of God’s plans? Try to remember in all times that God uses all circumstances, sweet and simple or, yes, even tough and terrible, to move His perfect plan forward.

Let’s just try to recognize that whenever you focus on your small or big plan, keep your thoughts focused on the planner. Like it says in Ephesians 1:1 – All things are done according to God’s plan and decision.

8db992572e787edf60aacea5d5f5e95d--gods-plan-trust-god.jpg

 

Make sure you catch next week’s writing as my  next posting shows . . . ‘Ready or Not . . . Her New Life Began.’

Marianne Petersen’s book God and Your Pillow is now available. (Amazon) – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blog, marimemoirs.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just Another Birthday – Song 13

                    – Just Another Birthday – Song #13 –

Bday cake

A song really stands out when you remember exactly where you were when you heard it for the first time. Has that ever happened to you? This song I sure do, but I won’t tell you where as much as why.

Being in a Christian book store a few years back to grab a new CD on my ‘Must Get’ list, I saw an older CD from the same group.

Oh, why not. I’m sure I’ll love their older songs, too.

Out of curiosity, I popped that one in as soon as I got in the car  (Okay, you now know where I heard it.)

I like this song. This other one’s COOL, too!  And this one. Glad I got this CD.

Then the one you are about to hear came on. It sure hit me. As you listen, and if you know the story behind my book, you’ll know why.  (#1)

 

This song described my entire story almost to the ‘T’. Aside from two small details, it’s as if I wrote it. My eyes still get tears occasionally while I listen to this song. During my teen years, my relationship with my father was much like this song shares. Plus, the age was exact during my pregnancy, along with my stay in the hospital to deliver. I melted even more when it shared she had a daughter, being I too had a daughter. Another reason it’s perfect for me is that it centers around a birthday. My daughter was born a few weeks before my birthday. My best gift.

Yep, this song causes me to picture my soap opera all over again. It’s as if I’m that one singing. But the most important part about this song is how it perfectly describes how my heavenly Father carried me through my ordeal as well. And man, did He hold me tight.

Can you think of a song that describes something you’ve been through? There’s got to be at least something close. I’d love to hear what song you hold in your heart, making you feel you should be the one singing it.

1* – Read here when I discovered I was regnant

book cover.jpeg

Marianne Petersen’s book God and Your Pillow is now available. (Amazon) – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blog, marimemoirs.com.

 

 

 

Unplanned Pregnancies – Then vs. Now

 – Unplanned Pregnancies Then vs. Now –

Pregnant
What was a typical day like for your average nineteen-year-old thirty years ago? When you woke up, you were glad there was nothing electronic close at hand to open up the world to you. You, alone, away from it all . . . perfect. Once awake, you’d turn on your favorite radio station or you’d rewind your cassette to hear your favorite Billy Joel, Whitney Houston, or Lionel Richie song again.

You were thrilled your parents got that extra-long phone cord so you could finally leave the kitchen and walk into the bathroom to talk to your friends.

il_570xN.728016205_8emf

“Well, then call me as soon as you get back home. I have to tell you something,” or “If no one answers, I’ll call later. Just make sure you are by a phone when home,” were statements often said.

“I’ll text you later” was nowhere to be found.

It was hard to decide which one of those six stations to watch on that big, boxy TV.

You loved grabbing the daily delivered newspaper your parents had on the kitchen counter to check movie times.

Later on, it was time to put eighty-nine-cents-per-gallon gas in your stick shift before picking up a few friends, grabbing ninety-nine-cent double cheeseburgers at McD’s before watching the movie called Star Trek lV, or The Voyage Home, that cost a whopping $2.75 to see. That’s what life was like for me when I was nineteen.

Until, that is, I found out I was pregnant. (1*) Life was so different back then, and I felt so alone. I’m certain many women feel like that even today, but because of the way we now have such easy access to helpful information, I think it’s safe to say that not quite so many feel as alone as I did.

cell phone

There was no cell phone back in 1986 so, when sitting in my car, away from the world, I couldn’t secretly look up information on where to get a pregnancy test. No laptops, I-pads, or cell phones to tweet #unplannedpregnancies. No opening up your laptop to type in NoWayCanIBePregnant.com, either. No putting in ‘first trimester’ to get a long list of websites covering the subject.

I would have loved to have found a Facebook group for Christians going through an unplanned pregnancy, or Twitter to find encouraging verses and quotes. But no. I felt like I was in my own little world, not able to connect with any Christians who had been, or were, going through what I was experiencing. I now know that if I did not have my church family during that time, I would have gone bonkers. But still, there was no one to Skype with who could look at me, face-to-face, and say, “Believe me, I know what it’s like and how you’re feeling.”

on computer

Unplanned pregnancies can be dealt with quite a bit differently now than thirty years ago. Now, you can get info on anything from anywhere. Heck, you can even get your best help or support from total strangers all around the world!

I’m sure I would have been getting information and insight from my I-phone, I-pad, or I-mac. (Yes, you can call me an I-fan!) There are also many organizations that have opened their doors for needed tests, information, and support.

For years, I put off writing my story being as so much had changed since I was pregnant. Then it hit me. Unplanned pregnancies are still that: un . . . planned . . . pregnancies. They were the same back then as they are now: an unexpected shock to women, followed by overwhelming emotions and stress for all involved. Once realizing this, I then decided—with encouragement from others—to write my book, showing what I went through. Yes, the means of getting helpful information about this type of pregnancy is now different. Also, the number of people you can connect with going through the same thing can sure help one feel less alone. But overall, we’re still the same. Our feelings and thoughts were stored in the same place back then as they are now: in our hearts and souls.

And God’s the same, as well! That’s the best fact. He has not changed how He carries those who follow Him. He sure carried me then and He sure carries His children now.

Hebrews 13:8: Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

Sure, He might now use that perfect website to guide you in what help or information to get.  I just know I’d never change what He used to guide me to what was best for me.

The good old yellow pages. (2*)

       yellow pagesjpg

1* Click here to find out how about a certain phone call. Yep. God had plans.

2* Click here to find out how the yellow pages fit into my story

Marianne Petersen’s book God and Your Pillow is now available. (Amazon) – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blog, marimemoirs.com.

 

 

My Pregnancy Story Continues

      – My Pregnancy Story Continues –

Pregnant

One of my past posts showed a small portion of an extra special journal writing I did  thirty-three years ago. Click here to read because what’s below is what directly came next on that page. My book, God and Your Pillow, is available now that covers my entire story behind me and that journal.  

————————————–

Journal Time. Yep, it’s time to share more of my journal and what was going from my heart to the paper at this time in my pregnancy. I wish I hadn’t allowed there to be a huge gap between writings. You need to know that . . . oh, my journal will tell you. See if you can notice a few things I leave out.

                                                                                                January 2, 1987

36257481_10213528784428390_7085672990074994688_n

Okay, let’s see. A lot has gone on since I last wrote over a year ago. April of ‘86 I drove down to Santa Maria, CA and lived with Debbie for three months, worked at the Hilton Hotel in room service. On my return home I was faced with my niece’s tumor and seeing her die. She died in September. So sad.

In the mean time God showed me the direction my life was to take. He gave me a baby. As of this writing, I am seven-and-a-half months along in my pregnancy. Things are fine as long as Jesus is close by. If it wasn’t for His will for my life, I’d go crazy! I’m making it through use fine. Praise God.

I’m sort of surprised I didn’t write for almost two years. What? Quick update: I started my journal when I was twelve. Every day for a while, then every other day, then every other week, then every other month, then maybe half a year and, at this point, a few years’ break. You mean I didn’t write at all during this entire time?  . . . Oh, and the space shuttle blew up since I last wrote. It’s been a very tough year.

——————————————

I’m still surprised I didn’t write in my journal once during that entire ordeal. One reason must be because all the pens in my room, heck, in the entire house for that matter, would not have had enough ink to put my overflowing thoughts down on paper.

But finally, as more peace was growing inside my heart, along with this baby growing inside my tummy, the more I was sensing that strong arm of God carrying us both. I could have been storing up all the negative this-and-thats that were here-and-there, but I didn’t. God helped keep the thoughts flowing to do what I felt was right as I kept prayer wrapped around it all as best I could. I knew whatever circumstances I faced didn’t have the power to dictate my attitude unless I let them. Now sure, towards the beginning I did allow negative thoughts to dictate my attitude. I’m ever-so thankful to this day that God saw fit to use my family, friends, my church, my bible, and yes, even my doctor (1*) to allow positive thoughts to dictate my attitude.

When life gets hard, it’s difficult to avoid letting a bad attitude rule our life and take over our mind. It’s true, life can sure stink sometimes when people hurt us, the past haunts us, those we work with mistreat us, family or friends don’t love us, spouses don’t honor us, children don’t appreciate or respect us, finances don’t support us, and our health doesn’t sustain us.

Joy-heart.jpg

Yep, enduring problems never really seen to be absent.  They make pure joy in our hearts difficult. But trying to hold at least a little smile not only helps us become stronger believers, it opens the door for an attitude transformation. Those of you reading, just keep in mind that when our heart, soul, and mind focus on the good that seems to be hiding, our attitudes will get better. The good is then easier to find, our attitudes improve even more, causing good things to seem to be showing up all over the place.

Just keep in mind that the only thing we have to lose, by choosing a positive attitude, is a negative one. And one of the many good things you just might gain by choosing a positive attitude is . . .

Screen Shot 2018-02-26 at 7.59.56 PM

 

. . . realizing you just might feel like sharing what’s been going on in your life in your journal.

 

 

 

1* – Click here to read how God spoiled me with my doctor. 

 

Marianne Petersen’s book God and Your Pillow is now available. (Amazon) – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blog, marimemoirs.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 Pregnancy Facts During That Eighth Month

           – 5 Pregnancy Facts During That Eighth Month –

facts-about-obesity-there-is-so-much

My due date was getting close. My new life as a single mom was right around the corner, and before I knew it I would be holding my very own daughter in my very own arms. I can’t help but share a list of a few pros and cons surrounding me that last month.

1- Sleep – Sleeping at night was getting ridiculously uncomfortable. I flat-out did not look forward to going to bed. I’m sure my pillow could sense the un-comfort I was feeling, and if it could talk, would probably holler  ‘STOP MOVING!’

2- Clothes – Not wearing maternity clothes in some near future was my little dream. By no means was I going to miss wearing them. I couldn’t wait till they all went back to the thrift store that I most likely got then from.

3- Weight – Being a bit over weight before I was pregnant, I really did not like my size at eight months. Any mirror close by that last month was not my best friend.

4- Information – Learning all I could about labor, delivery and nursing was a must. I’m sure if websites were available back in 1987, Childbirth.com would have been my best friend.

Time now for the last yet most important fact

5- Church family – Let a few paragraphs from my book explain.

————————–

       I was so thankful that my church was a true family of believers. Great messages, great fellowship. As my tummy was slowly but surely getting bigger, my love for all I was learning was growing as well. My church family helped me hang on with my family situation at home. Friction that had been going on for years between my parents was growing. Thankfully, I knew my soap-opera life wasn’t making it worse. I actually think it might have been helping, as it got them thinking of other things instead of what was wrong between them.
       My siblings’ lives, too, were all going in different directions. It seemed most were all hoping they could find greener grass elsewhere. Christ wasn’t included on their road in life. It was good that I could escape not only on Sundays, but at the Wednesday evening prayer meetings too. Sort of a mid-week refreshment. It’s scary to think how less peaceful I would have felt during that time if I didn’t have a great source for spiritual support and friends.

————————–

 

Picture1-1Of course the first and far most reason for church is the gathering of believers to worship our Lord.  But the group I was honoring God with was also a must for me during my pregnancy.

Let me encourage those who do not attend church on a routine basis to do that. One of the many reasons is that when trials come, a support system that’s crucial could be right there. When in need, you will want your brothers and sisters in Christ to uphold you in prayer and assist with practical needs as well.

 

Galatians 6:2 encourages us to do just what my church family did for me.

galatians-6-2-2

 

Click here if you are curious how this entire story began.  

 

Marianne Petersen’s book God and Your Pillow is now available. (Amazon) – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blog, marimemoirs.com.