Photo credits

The Embalse de Riano in northern Spain. The picture was taken by .... me!

Monday, January 22

Sad News

I’m sad to report that our long-hoped for pregnancy has miscarried.

Mrs had suffered bleeding for about a week, but encouraged herself with books that said this can happen in successful pregnancies, together with the fact that she still had strong morning sickness. But when she went for her routine visit to the midwife on Wednesday, she was sent for an emergency scan at the first available appointment last Thursday morning.

On Wednesday evening the bleeding got worse, but then stopped and we thought it was just a scare.

At the appointment, the screen showed the shape of the baby clearly. Mrs was straining her neck to see the screen, and the nurse was telling her to lie down and relax, but she was saying “Is there a heartbeat? Is there heartbeat?” I couldn’t see one, but bluffed that I wasn’t sure where to look. Then the nurse said “I’m really sorry, but there’s no heartbeat”, and it was all over. Tears. Tears.

Measurements showed that the baby had stopped growing at 11 weeks and 3 days – roughly the time the bleeding started, though Mrs was now technically 14 weeks. It was uncomfortable to think she had been carrying a dead baby that long.

I took the rest of the day off work.

We went to a Chinese restaurant for lunch – which was very nice.

I fetched the youngest kids at the end of school, and told them in the playground. I told two or three mothers, and asked them to pass the news around to save us having to go through the story over and over, and to tell people to give us space until we were ready to face the world.

We told the other children as they came in later. The ones we thought would be most upset seemed blasé. Only the 16 year old boy seemed to show any real understanding and compassion. (The next day the 6 year old said “Why did the baby have to die?” so he is probably upset too. For the others I think its just becoming routine for Mum to have miscarriages)

Mrs retired to her bedroom, unable to cope with children running around the house with the usual noise and fights, oblivious to her feelings.

During the night it all came out in a rush, so at least she was spared from carrying it any longer.

On Friday I came out with a flu, and failed to get my morning jobs done in time and took the morning off work. This gave time for a good chat with Mrs.

We decided to call the baby “Noah” – which means ‘rest’ – which is a name our girls had asked for some time earlier. But I choked up when Mrs suggested it. I often listen to a song by Michael W Smith called “Hello, Goodbye” (For lyrics go here andscroll down to the 10th song) – which tells the story of his own son called “Noah”, that died at the age of 12 days. I always found it deeply emotional, but I will always cry when I hear that song now!

Won Saturday, Mrs was on bed all day. I wanted to get all my normal stuff done and also do all her chores, but being full of flu did neither. And needing to take the children out to help them buying presents for Mrs’ upcoming birthday meant I was even more behind. And since the weekend storm blew several panels out of our fence and I had to buy and erect replacements so the neighbour could let her dog out, meant I was even more behind.

Skived church on Sunday. Mrs still in bed. I couldn’t face the public, and still full of flu, still behind on chores. Mostly caught up during the afternoon.

Today I’m back at work, feeling much healthier.

Mrs is back in bed, and frankly pissed off, and declined my goodbye kiss. I think she is disappointed that I didn’t do more over the weekend, and is understandably not in any mood to be tolerant. I think her greater anger is towards God, but that is for another post.

Friday, January 12

A day in the life of....well, me.

6:30 Alarm
6:35 Set out and eat breakfast
6:40 child 2 and child 3 eat
6:50 Read the Bible, if child 3 has not put the sports news channel on.
6:55 take breakfast up to Mrs in bed, wake child 4
7:00 get in shower. Child 3 goes on paper round
7:30 get out of shower. (who said showers use less water than baths?)
7:31 wake child 5 and child 6
7:35 grunt a greeting to child 1 as he goes to school with child 2
7:40 unload dishwasher, start putting breakfast stuff in
7:50 help child 6 dress
8:00 dress myself. Child 3 back from paper round.
8:05 continue tidying kitchen, do cat litter, laundry, make my sandwiches, etc
8:15 Child 3 cycles to school
8:40 Take child 4 to school
8:30 Any more odd jobs
8:40 take child 5 an child 6 to school, drive on to work
9:45 arrive at work
10:30 fail to resist eating my lunch (alternatively: realise I have left my sandwiches at home)
10:35 regret eating lunch too soon.
10:40 look at Vindicated and Elizaphanian
11:30 feel guilty, go back to work
12:00 lunch break
12:30 end of lunch break, but who can tell?
12:31 feel guilty for being so undisciplined at work
13:00 Phone Mrs – on the rare occasions she is home or has switched her mobile on I actually speak to her.
16:00 really must stop daydreaming and do something constructive today. Redouble effort and actually work properly until:
18:15 Go home
19:20 Arrive home – microwave my tea (evening meal)
20:00 talk to Mrs
20:15 start putting child 5 and child 6 to bed.
20:30 Have a cup of tea with the remainder f the family.
21:00 If I am studying today, go upstairs
23:00 go back down to spend the rest of the evening with Mrs – meet her on the stairs as she goes up to bed. Watch TV alone.
24:00 Go to bed.

Wednesday, January 10

Pink is the new Black

I wrote the ideas below before I received a letter from my MP, which basically demonstrated that there are exemptions to the SORs for churches, etc, and so I have typed a whole rant for nothing. Apologies to all! I will scan the MPs letter for you tomorrow if I get a chance.

There was a time when Racism was part of our institutional culture. Laws were passed to protect ethnic minorities. Equality ensued. But of course, there is always the tendancy for the pendulum to swing to far, and for some time it seemed that it was imossible to sack a black person because it would be deemed to be racist. Even now, if a person states to the British police that he/she has been the victim of a racial incident, it is recorded as a racial incident, regardless of whether it really was. The vast majority of people in any ethnic groups do not use the race card to their advantage, but some do.

We now have the sexual orientation regulations. And in just the same way I predict that the pendulum will swing too far, and that some militant gay activists (as opposed to the vast majority of basically decent folk who just happen to be genetically gay) will target religious organisations to provoke them into stating their religious beliefs, and then they will accuse them of homophobia, and basically decent folk who happen to be genetically religious (yes gentically - see BBC article here)
will be in trouble with the law.

In fact, because it does not unanimously condone gay 'marriage', the Church of England, with the Queen at its head and its Bishops in the House of Lords, is now basically an illegal organisation.

Tuesday, January 9

Hi I'm back

Well back for now anyway. Life is still very full.

Mrs is still strongly pregnant, with loads of morning sickness etc, but is suffering a few small bleeds. in the past these have always heralded the doom of the pregnancy, but we feel so strongly that this is the Lord's will that we still hold hope.

At work I am busy with engineering projects which leaves little time for blogging. Following the success fo our Carol service we are starting an Alpha course next week. Please pray that people will come and find the Lord Jesus.

I wrote the ideas below before I received a letter from my MP, which basically demonstrated that there are exemptions to the SORs for churches, etc, and so I have typed a whole rant for nothing. Apologies to all! I will scan the MPs letter for you on Thursday if I get a chance.

A dark day for the UK today with the Sexual Orientation Regulations. Thyey were originaly introduced through the back door without proper consultation. An attempt to annul them in Northern Ireland was defeated by one party using the vote of a deceased member. And in the hosue of Lords today the english objectors were overruled. The regulations in themselves are well intentioned, and I would support their intent, but they have been taken to far. A Church that now declines to hire out its hall to a gay group on the grounds that their objectives are not compatible with the church's theology can now be fined large sums of money. The pastor/Vicar would also be fined personally. This clearly exchanges one oppression for another. Fair enough, in society at large, let people do as they will. But why should we be forced to let them do and say things that we object to on our property? Why should people be forced to do things that are contrary to their religion? Next Buckingham Palace will be forced to sell anarchist flags in its gift shop. It seems to me that politicians are even more frightened of the gay lobby than they are of Islamic fundamentalism.