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Thursday, March 25, 2010

Answering Your Questions

Whew! Have the last few days been hectic around our house or what?! My head is still spinning.

I haven't forgotten about my promise to answer the questions from my Questions post. I'm just going to start from the top comment and work my way down if that is alright with you!

I'm going to answer the first two questions together because they all kind of involve the same answer...

The questions were:
How did Joseph and you meet? How did he propose? And in what ways is your coping with grief different from his? AND My question is, how old were you when you got married, and how did you and Joseph meet?

Joseph and I met at church. I was 17 years old at the time and had no interest in dating him what-so-ever! He was nothing like the normal guy I was attracted to. Here is this straight laced guy that wears button up polo shirts and khaki dress pants with actual shoes... no thank you! I wanted a bad boy or surfer dude with shaggy hair, ratty shorts, optional shirt, and flip flops! Somebody as clean cut as this "church boy" was sure to be BORRRRINGGGG! I pretty much ignored him besides the occasional nod or hello as I passed by him in church.

One day, Joseph's uncle came and sat next to me out of the blue. "You know, Joseph is a really great christian boy, Danielle. Maybe you should think about spending some time with him. I really think the two of you have a lot in common"...said his uncle slyly.

"Oh, he wouldn't be interested in me", was the reply I used to politely escape these disastrous match making attempts before I quickly got up and made a dash for the safety of the choir area. That was the last I heard from uncle C on the subject.

But Joseph's uncle was far from giving up his title as match maker...

Apparently, he had the same exact conversation with Joseph later that day, to which Joseph replied, "Oh, I doubt she'd be interested". Ha! I had stuck my foot in my mouth earlier and hadn't even realized it...

"Oh, that's funny that you should think so, because she said the exact thing about you being interested in her", uncle C said to a hopeful Joseph.

Long story short, Joseph called my grandfather and asked for permission to ask me out on a date. My heart melted just a little bit by his chivalry and I agreed to go on a date with him "as friends" or as "christian companionship". We went on our first date which led to another, which led to another...

When Joseph left for boot camp a couple months later I realized how miserable and empty my life was without him in it. He was my best friend. Much to my dismay, I realized I was in love with him. I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that Joseph was the man God had made especially for me. I would spend the rest of my life with him. There was no questioning my feelings for him or his for me.

Three days after I turned 18, I married the boy I was trying to get out of talking to not even eight months earlier. We shared our first kiss in front of our church family when the pastor pronounced us man and wife. It was magical. There was no proposal, we just decided 12 days before I turned 18 that we knew we were going to spend the rest of our lives together... why wait? Besides, we were both living with our grandmothers and felt like burdens. We knew we could take care of each other. We looked forward to taking care of each other. It's funny how God knows exactly what he's doing. As annoyed as I was with uncle C at the time, I owe him big time for introducing me to the man of my dreams.

As far as the differences in our grieving process, that's easy. WE'RE POLAR OPPOSITES. I grieve outwardly at home. I curl up in a ball and cry in bed. I eat everything chocolate in sight. I obsess over stupid, meaningless things that I CAN control. Me grieving is not a pretty sight at all...

Joseph on the other hand is a rock. He bottles everything up and rarely talks about them. I think he feels like he needs to do that so he can be "the strong one" for me. Looking at him (most days) you would think he was perfectly fine and that nothing bad or heartbreaking had ever happened to him... he amazes me. I am very lucky to have him. He support me as I grieve and he loves me enough to give me a reality check when I'm in need of one.

Next question!

I love the way you have crocheted a beautiful blanket for all your children.When did you learn to crochet and who taught you? This is a light hearted question, but I was amazed at your talent. I have always wanted to crochet myself.

Well thank you for the sweet compliment! My grandmother on my father's side (Nana) taught me how to crochet. When I was about six years old I was driving her insane because I kept interrupting her as she was trying to do her aerobics exercise. Her solution was to teach me how to make a basic chain. Once I mastered a certain chain, she would move on and teach me another. I really enjoyed doing it, and it's something I've always kept up with on and off. I never actually finished a blanket for the first time until I made Ansley her first blanket. My patience was limited to pot holders and place mats!

Next question!

Oh fun!! I always love to hear people talk about their "faith" stories. Did you grow up knowing God? How has your relationship changed and what "advise" would you give a new believer?

On a lighter note....what was the last book you read for fun?!

I accepted Christ in my heart when I was six years old... Man, I was a busy little six year old it seems!

It was the Easter service actually. I remember the pastor talking about how much this man named Jesus loved me. I remember squirming in my seat as he described how Jesus died because he wanted to save me. My six-year-old rationale was that if someone went through all that because they loved me so much, why in the world would I not let them come live in my heart. I've been hooked on Jesus ever since.

I will admit I strayed away from God around the beginning of my teen years. I made some decisions and choices I wish I could change. I learned from those unwise decisions and when I returned to God my faith was stronger than it had ever been. I actually think this was the age it really clicked for me. I started teaching a wednesday night class of 1st and 2nd graders when I turned sixteen. I was in the choir, praise team, various committees, youth... you name it and I was there! Church was a huge part of my ife before we moved here to Tennessee. We never really found a "home" at any of the churches we visited... then we got Wyatt's diagnosis and, well, you know how much I've been struggling to get back into church. I miss it. But even though church is not a part of my life at the moment, God is the biggest part.

My advise to new believers would be to keep God at the center of everything you do. It is impossible to make a wrong decision if you make God a part of the process.

As far as my last book... I'm reading Pregnancy After Loss at the moment. Thank you Holly for taking the time to send it to me... it's really helping!

Next Question!

Have you always had an interest in photography? What got you into it?

I've always been intrigued by interesting photographs. I never really considered the idea to start my own photography business until after I got Wyatt's diagnosis. I loved taking pictures, but, never really had the faith in myself to get started.

We had a session to do maternity pictures with a sweet woman affiliated with NILMDTS. When I got those pictures I realized I wanted to do for other families what this wonderful woman had done for us. I wanted to capture people's happy moments. I wanted to share in the little miracles God could capture through a perfectly timed portrait. Wyatt helped me see how special it was to capture such a sweet and fleeting moment.

Next Question!

I've just been reading your blog as a lurker, but I've been wondering about the footprint tattoo on your hand. Whose footprints are they? :)

I don't actually have a tattoo on my hand. When Joseph and I went on vacation to Sea World as a family, we were trying to make memories with Wyatt. I had a henna tattoo put on the back side of my wrist with Wyatt's name underneath.

The other pictures you may be referring to are the ones of Wyatt's footprints on my husbands hand. I suggested the nurse stamp Wyatt's foot on Josephs hand because I thought it would be a cute picture. I'm glad I did because it shows just how tiny but perfect Wyatt's little feet were. I loved his tiny hands and feet!

I do plan on getting Wyatt's footprints tattoo'd on me after I deliver Seth and finish nursing. I will either get it on the back of my neck or one print each across my foot so they can be seen when I wear my flip flops.

Next (and last) Question!

The next time you come back home I would like to go to lunch : ) To catch up. So my question is: can we : ) ? I have enjoyed very much being able to see God work through you and it helps me out A LOT with my own faith : )
On a different note: are you and Joseph going to have more children after Seth?

You would be crazy to think that I would turn down food and good company! Of course we can get together. I'd love that!

As far as Joseph and I having more kids the answer is NO and YES. Confusing, huh?

No, we will not be having anymore children of our own unless God reverses the vasectomy my husband is getting once I have Seth. He's not even allowed to look at my before we get that taken care of! It's not that we wouldn't love to have more children of our own, but with having a 1 in 4 chance that we could have another baby with the same condition Wyatt had, it's not fair to a future child to gamble with their health... especially when it means if we lost the gamble, our child would die. Plus, I've had more problems with each pregnancy and I don't think my health could handle another pregnancy.

But we do plan on adding at least one more child to our family through adoption. I've always felt led to adopt a child so Joseph and I will start out as foster parents until we find a child that God tells us is meant to be a part of our family permanently. We'll wait until after Seth is at least a year old before we even consider starting the process of becoming foster parents. We want time to enjoy Ansley, Eli, and Seth before we throw another child into the mix.

Well, I think I answered all of your questions! I hope you walk away from this post feeling like you know me a lot (or just a little bit) better. Thank you for taking interest and coming up with some really good questions. I truly enjoyed answering each question I was asked.



Rachel E. said...

Thanks for answering our questions, Danielle! I know you didn't offer to do another Q&A, but I'm curious, so I'm going to ask anyway. :-) Why were you and Joseph raised by your respective grandparents? I lived with my grandparents for six months when I was in college and found that it was a VERY different dynamic from living with my parents. I'd be interested to hear the story behind your and Joseph's upbringings.

Tiffany said...

I missed your original post about the questions and saw it last night. I figured it was probably too late to write one. That was such a great thing for you to offer to do and some really good questions. The faith question about God and church really opened my eyes about myself. Thanks.

With Out My Punkin said...

Thank you for sharing! Its nice to know more about you!

Jess said...

Thank you for sharing about yourself. What a romantic start to your life with Joseph. God has a way of bringing the right people together, even when you least expect it. I met my husband when I was 18 and married him 11 months later at 19!

Holly said...

Thanks for sharing!~!