Friday, July 10, 2009

Strength

I get so many comments on this blog from people saying that they admire how strong I am. I have to admit, that those comments often embarrass me, because most days I certainly don't feel strong. I feel like I am just doing what I need to do to get by. Through all of this, from our struggles with infertility to the incredibly early arrival of our babies, Joe and I have tried to stay positive. We know that we are lucky. We found each other at an incredibly young age and have been able to spend the last 12 years building a life together rather than searching for "the one." We have wonderful families who support us 100%, a beautiful home, great pets and jobs we love. We are lucky, and always figured that the infertility/pregnancy difficulties were just our cross to bear, so we did it without much complaint. Not everything can be perfect. And now things are certainly not perfect.

We hate that our beautiful babies are in the NICU 45 minutes away from us. I cry almost daily because the fact that my children are almost 2 weeks old and I have never gotten to hold them kills me. We have absolutely no money right now and aren't really sure how we're going to go about getting some. We have nothing prepared at home for the babies, and I'm scared to even start anything.

So on most days, I feel very, very weak. But I find strength in Joe, who is the best husband ever and would do anything for me. He's currently pounding the pavement to find a second job, and spent a day last week cancelling all his "extras," like magazine subscriptions and his XM. When I said I would cancel my major expense, my gym membership, he flat out refused to let me, stating that the gym was my "thing" and he would not let me give it up, even though it costs more per month than all his "extras" combined. And I find strength in our babies, who are fighting so hard and being so brave. I need to be there for them no matter what. So thank you for admiring my strength, but it certainly doesn't come from me alone. My husband and babies keep me going day in and day out, and I guess that makes things "perfect" for now.

24 comments:

MasonTripletsPlusOne said...

Brooke, I can't even begin to imagine everything you are going through. My trio were born at 33w 2d and spent 16 day's in the NICU so I only know one onehundreth of your pain. Things will get better and you will come out of this stronger alone and as a couple. It sounds like you have a great foundation and though you have many months of bumps ahead in the end will be the rainbow and pot of gold. Hang in there and I will keep your family in my prayers.

Jill

madrededudley said...

I am praying for you guys and your beautiful babies.
May God give you the strength to continue holding each other up and may he cradle your sweet babies in the palm of his hand as they weather the storm.

Courtney said...

Hi Brooke!

This is what strength IS. It's not gliding through life's difficulties (understatement in this case, I know) without a care in the world, or burying your head in the proverbial sand, just ignoring reality. No, that would be bizarro, bordering on inhuman.

Strength is facing your problems and hurdles head-on. It's not running away. It's consistently doing what it takes to make it through to the other side. And sure - it's breaking down for a moment (or two, or three, or four) if that's what it takes to forge ahead. And it's knowing that yes - you need someone to lean on, too.

That is why you and Joe are strong. Not because you're putting on a positive face, not because you're the ultimate optimists. But because you're doing it together, day in, day out, and not giving up - on each other OR those precious kids of yours.

By the way - awesome that you're able to keep the gym membership!

Here's hoping for more continued good news!

Anonymous said...

Joe and Brooke,
I have been keeping upadated by your blog and by Cheryl and Jamie. You and the babies continue to be in my thoughts and prayers.
Allisyn Manzar

Anonymous said...

Joe and Brooke,

Your strength of character is revealed in how you handle what life throws at you-- and life has thrown the two of you a lot. You manage somehow not to complain, to smile and laugh when things are down-- because what's the alternative, really?-- and to keep on going when when you simply just want to "throw in the towel." You both ARE strong and are genuinely good people-- that's why you have so many prayers and people supporting you. If you need anything at all please call. Those precious babies need you and you're doing an exemplary job being there for them.

Cheryl

The Roose Family said...

Joe & Brooke - I have followed your story throught SAIF and now through your blog. I constantly admire your courage, strength, and love for one another. I pray for your babies everyday and look forward to celebrating as they continue to grow in size and strength. May God bless all of you, today, tomorrow, and forever.

Lisa

Anonymous said...

I wish I knew how to contact you personally. Your blog reminds me of our NICU days 4 years ago. Our trips came at 24 weeks and spent 5 months in the NICU. We went through what you are going through now. Not many people can understand the NICU and what the environment is like. Your little guy sounds just like ours (we also have g/g/b trips). He showed the typical wimpy white boy syndrome but proved himself by coming home first and eating the most. If you want to touch base with us, please do so. At least you will be able to talk to someone who understands,

Suzan and Tim
suzyandtim@cox.net

Anonymous said...

HANG IN THERE - THERE IS A LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL... YOUR GOAL IS EACH OTHER - CHARLIE - ANNALEIGH AND LILY. This will give you the strength that you need every second of your life.
You can do this and you will do this. It's hard as hell now but sooooooooooooo worth it.......

All My Love Always, Auntie :)
xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

Mom2Be said...

You're a lot stronger than you give yourself credit for. Look at all that you've been through and all that you're still going through...there are a lot of people who wouldn't be able to handle it as well as you. It's okay that you cry, etc., that doesn't make you weak, it makes you human! What about setting up a paypal account for the blog? I can tell you're quite humble, but I know I'd be willing to donate a little towards the babies, etc. Glad to hear your babies are doing well. I hope your FIL gets better soon and that they're able to figure out what's going on. Hang in there, there's always a storm before the calm.

Stephanie said...

You really are so strong. Even though I don't "know" you except through the cooking board/blog, I admire your strength and I am sure everything will work out- it always does.

Anonymous said...

You are both so very strong and through your belief in the babies and each other will bring you through this. The finances will work out. Just when you think there is no way, things will work out and you will be provided the things you need. There is a book I just read that may really help you. I know with all the gossip these days, this lady is not always liked but this book gave me peace. It is an easy read - Multiple Blessings by Kate Gosselin. When you have a moment waiting to see the babies or riding to the hospital, you should try it out. Brian and I are thinking of all of ya'll and praying for you every day! You can do this and so much more!!

Crystal Boudreaux

Lori said...

I've been following your story and I just wanted to say God Bless you both and your babies. My prayers are with you.

scatterbrainliz said...

Brooke & Joe,
I've been away on vacation and just had some time to get caught up. I cannot believe you had your babies at 24 weeks and they were healthy! I'm just amazed! I'll keep all of you in my thoughts so that all the babies will keep growing stronger every day! I started tearing up as I read all the posts.

Good luck!

Andrew's Mom said...

Brooke, I live in Long Island (about 20 minutes from NYC) - if you want to give up your gym - I would let you have (if you can come and get it or have a relative come) - a Ab Rocker, the $400 gazelle (not the cheap one) and a plethora of exercise DVDs (pilates, turbo jam, yoga, etc) and a recumbent exercise bike (I'm keeping my treadmill and a few DVDs). I would also let you have my step and whatever else I might be able to part with (if you have room for these things). Please let me know if you would like them.

The Home Cook said...

You guys are strong together - all 5 of you. Everything you have been through and you still get up each day and do what has to be done. You guys will be ok, you'll make it through all of this.

((HUGS))

Brooke said...

Thank you everyone for your comments and all you've offered. We still can't get over how kind everyone has been to us through all of this. We really appreciate it.

Anonymous said...

Brooke,

I know that you'll probably hold onto your gym membership, but if you choose not to, I have a treadmill that you could have. It works fine; we just have no room for it-- and you're welcome to have it! I'll just keep up my girlish physique some other way. :) Just let me know. You know I'll keep praying for all of you!

Cheryl (again)

Andrew's Mom said...

Sorry Ab Lounge (not rocker)! Correction.

Michele from FTHS said...

Brooke, you are an AMAZING WOMAN and Joe is an amazing guy! Look at how much you two have struggled through only to remain strong and you have those three little cuties as your reward. Keep the faith and stay strong.

Anonymous said...

You guys are amazing and truly blessed! I wish there were more people in the world like you. All of your parents should be proud!!

Lori said...

You guys are doing great. I have been praying for your babies.

Frankly, when your kids come home you might as well cancel your gym membership for a few months. As a mother of triplets I can tell you it will be very unlikely you will have the time or energy to go.

Katie (DeRose) Wilson said...

Brooke,
Having had two full-term births and being able to hold my boys after giving birth to them, I cannot imagine the struggles you are going through as a mother right now. Each day I follow your blog to check for updates on how they are doing wishing for the day there is a picture of you and Joe holding one of the babies. No matter how much you cry and rant and rave and say it's not fair (all the struggles you have been through to get to this point are not fair), you are now and will always be Charlie, Lily and Annaleigh's Mommy! For some reason, that name given to us makes us strong...your battles to get there and now are what are making you stronger and have a love for those babies that you have never experienced before! You and Joe are probably getting closer as husband and wife as well, and he I'm sure has a whole different love for you than he did before you became parents! We are routing for you, Joe and your family!

citygirlcooks said...

As someone else said...that's what strength IS. You keep going and doing your best for your husband, your kids and yourself. You deserve the gym and all the good thoughts coming your way.

b is for brown said...

stop making me cry! you are an amazing person. i just found your blog. you can do this. going through your fertility treatments and IVF helped to make you stronger for those babies of yours.