Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Some Great Give Aways

Having so many people...family, friends, and people we've never even met...reach out to our family in such a selfless way through our "Peace of Mind Fund" has been truly amazing. We stand in awe at the goodness of others, and we are truly humbled by the outpouring of love and support we have received. There are no words to express the love and gratitude we feel toward each one of you.

Being able to visit Dr. Collins in August would be a dream come true. A dream that would stay just that, a dream without all of you. Having the peace of mind that will come from knowing a specialist is monitoring the health and well-being of our baby girl will be truly priceless. We look forward to sharing this journey with each of you, through this blog, as we make the trip to Louisianna to visit Dr. Collins, and venture home with the monitoring system. We'll be sure to post lots of pictures and updates on our progress as we go along, as we now feel that each of you deserve to be part of that special journey.

As part of this amazing blog, people have recently donated some amazingly cute things that you can get in on. If you've already donated you can put your name in, and if you'd like to donate you can have the chance to win some of these things as well. Click on the button below to find out more about how it all works.

We'd like to send out a big thank you to all the talented people that have made something to donate on our behalf. You are amazing people with so much to share!

We want you to know that every night we pray that God's choicest blessings will be yours...we plead that each of you, in a personal...specific way, will be blessed for your generous contribution. We also pray that we'll be blessed with opportunities now...and in the future that will allow us to pay your kindness forward to others.

All our Love- Rob and Natalie Call

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Overcoming Fear

Emotions are a powerful thing aren't they? Each and every one real...raw. Experiencing the loss of a child has magnified every emotion. Some emotions I have welcomed with open arms, and others I have wanted to push away.

During the months since Branson's passing, I have spent a lot of time thinking about emotions. I have concluded that we experience them all...the good, the bad, the hard...for a reason, and I personally think that reason is so we can become more like Jesus Christ.

The mission we choose to accept by coming to this Earth was to learn, to grow, and to become more like Him and our Father in Heaven.

"Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in Heaven is perfect."
St. Matthew 5:48

This is our ultimate goal after all isn't it? To become perfect even as he is? For me, this process will take much longer than the time I will be given here on Earth. At times that charge seems daunting, impossible, and downright unachievable. The beautiful thing about our Father, is that he doesn't expect us to do it alone. He sent his son.

His son is our exemplar...the only human being to walk the Earth in utter perfection. His son is our truest friend...there for us every step of the way. His son is our mediator...our personal link to the father. His son is our Savior...it is only through him that this perfection can be reached. For, through his atonement, he has made up where we will assuredly fall short.

So, in time spent thinking about the Savior, I have learned a few things about emotion. First, he has felt and experienced every single emotion so he could perfectly understand us, but he also "overcame" them...mastered them to a perfect form...to continue in his perfection.

So, as I've struggled with such emotions as anger, doubt, disbelief, abandonment, loneliness, and emptiness I have tried to do a few things. First, let myself experience those emotions...for they are real. Bottling them up inside, or pretending they aren't there, would only deceive myself...but for how long?

Second, allow myself to "process" each emotion...why am I feeling that way?...what lead me to this emotion?...how do I function when I feel this way?...what purpose does this emotion serve for me right now?

Third, don't let myself get "stuck" there. Although I believe each emotion is a gift from God, they can also be a tool of Satan's. He wants me to get "stuck" in the negative, to dwell there.

Fourth, and perhaps the hardest step for me, is to let my faith and trust in God help me overcome the emotion...instead of letting the emotion overcome me.

These four things have helped me tremendously in the past. Yet, lately I am facing a new...but very strong emotion...fear. And, I am having a very difficult time not letting that emotion overcome me.

Fear in itself scares me...isn't that ironic? I am filled with fear that his baby girl won't be able to stay with us...that once again I'll be left with empty arms. I fear that I'll do something to harm her. I fear that her heart will stop beating. I fear that I'll never hear her scream, or see smile. But perhaps what I fear most is not knowing what God's will is for us and this little one.

This is the hardest emotion for me to move past...I feel like I'm getting stuck. Yet, I also feel myself wanting to pull away from it...but how?

I have been able to find examples in the scriptures where Christ felt many of these different emotions, but was there an example when Christ felt fear? As I thought about it, a scripture came to mind:

"And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt."
St. Matthew 26:39

I believe that Christ knew that suffering for our sins and feeling every pain, emotion, and sickness we would be asked to bear was part of his purpose. Yet, as I thought about this scripture the other day, I wondered as that moment arrived in the Garden of Gethsemane if Christ might have felt a little fear...anxiety of not knowing the full extent of the suffering he was about to endure. Perhaps it was that fear that led Him to ask the Father to "let this cup pass from me".

So yes, I think Christ felt fear...he experienced it, he felt it's power.

Yet he refused to let that fear overcome him and his purpose...he overcame it with his faith and trust in His Father..."not as I will, but as thou wilt". He may have feared what lay before him, but he never doubted that His Father knew best. I believe that it was through this submission and show of faith that he overcame his fear.

It's strange, because I feel closer to my Father in Heaven than ever before...yet, I think that perhaps I still lack complete trust in his plan for me...that complete trust that the Savior obviously had. That's where I need to work...I need to use the knowledge that I have about God's perfect love, about his eternal purposes, and about my personal relationship with him to make that trust complete.

In the meantime, I'll find peace in the Savior's understanding and comfort through knowing he's there, and I'll enjoy the love, excitement, joy and hope that I feel when she's stirring inside.

"Wherefore, be of good cheer, and do not fear, for I the Lord am with you, and will stand by you..."
D&C 68:6

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Another Earthly Angel

As we've began the journey down a new road, a road that involves a new pregnancy, and a new life stirring inside, we've felt a range of emotion from elation, joy, hope, and anticipation to emotions of doubt, anxiety, and fear. Wanting and hoping so badly that this little spirit will be able to stay with us, we have spent time on our knees as we plead with our Heavenly Father that our will and his will be one.

We know that Branson died due to a cord accident, however, we also know that his death was no accident. We have found peace and hope in that knowledge. 

Yet, as we wait for October to come,  we can't just sit by and hope for something different. Doing nothing won't calm the worries, or put an end to our fears. We feel that it is after we "do" all that we can, that the Savior is able to take us in his hands and make up the difference....to create a miracle in the form of a kicking, screaming, healthy baby girl. 

And so, we have read and researched...we have learned. In that learning we have come to know of a Dr. Collins in Louisiana who specializes in infant death due to cord accidents. His work is amazing and his mission important. He works to educate those in the medical profession about the reality of being able to prevent fatal cord accidents with the right training and proper monitoring of expectant mothers. 

He offers a service in which mothers who have previously lost a child to a cord accident, fly toLouisiana between the 28-30 weeks of a subsequent pregnancy, where he performs an extensive ultrasound. During that time he studies the baby and the cord, and he is able to determine if the cord is wrapped or knotted at that time. Then, he sends each mother home with a "home monitoring system". Each night, the mother wraps this monitor around the belly while sleeping and a machine records the baby's heartbeat and any contractions that you may be having. Then the information is emailed to Dr. Collins each morning. As he watches and analyzes the data that is sent to him, he is able to detect problems with the cord before those problems cause fatality. 

Since learning about this, I have had a great desire to participate in Dr. Collins work. The peace of Mind that would come from knowing that someone who is trained to recognize any potential problems is monitoring the health of my sweet baby would be truly priceless. Unfortunately, this program has a price tag. 

A dear friend, Amy, that also lost a beautiful little girl, Alexis, due to a cord accident is the one that sent me the information about Dr. Collins. She has been an amazing friend through everything, as she understands and relates so personally to what we face each day. She has set up a miraculous blog on our behalf. A blog called "A Peace of Mind". She emailed me just a few days ago, saying that she wanted to help make this visit with Dr. Collins happen...and that there are so many people who want to help in some small way. She invites you to visit the blog where you can find out more about Dr. Collins and some different ways you can help. 

My hope is that as others learn about Dr. Collins, more lives may be saved, more doctors will become educated, and more mothers will have a peace of mind.
Thank you Amy for being an Earthly Angel, and for serving a friend in such a selfless way.