These were the most difficult years of our marriage, yet they were blessed because they made us stronger and brought us closer together.
I had just graduated and was trying to obtain a teaching position with limited results, and you went back to a regular day schedule once the children went to school. These two major changes, along with the hectic schedule of elementary children, caused us to take out our frustrations on one another. Still, you fought for our marriage like no other. You remembered and reminded me to look back to the time when we fell in love. Those were such cherished memories! And, then we fondly remembered becoming parents together – with both bundles of joy. We simply didn’t want to give up on the love story and the memories we shared. So, we struggled through. I am so happy that we did, because you are truly my soulmate. I could love no other!
I graduated in May of this year with my Bachelors in Middle School English and Math. Now, it was your turn. You began your undergraduate in Business at Spalding University.
David turned five, and began kindergarten. So, Lauren, although she was three and I had chosen to substitute this year in order to be home for her, decided that she should go to school as well. So, she went to half-day preschool at our church, Jeffersontown Christian Church.
Since both children were in school, I went back for my Masters as well. So, this year was the school year. You were in undergraduate, I was in graduate, and the kids were in kindergarten and preschool.
David began ball this year in T-ball. Of course, you were his coach. I was always so proud that you stepped up to coach him in every season of baseball and many seasons of basketball. In football, you were assistant coach, as it was a school league. You were leading him all the way.
1990 began yet another new adventure. I went back to school to complete my Bachelor’s degree in education. You went without sleep, almost, to support my dream of becoming a teacher. David was such a big helper with his little sister. She loved to swing, and he would crank the swing and/or push her in it. And, he was thrilled when she was able to walk. We realized that he had expected a playmate when he asked, “When’s this baby going to do anything” when she about a week old. She was now able to do “things”.
These years are a blur to me as far as memories. I’m sure it was because we were so busy. This biggest thing that I remember is that we were so excited that both kids were out of diapers. Still, these were fun years, because were were a family together. You enjoyed every minutes of being a Dad, and you worked so hard at making us all so happy.
This is the year that our family was complete. Lauren’s due date was January 15, 1989, but we were told at Christmas not to travel as I was too close to delivery. We traveled anyway, thinking I went into early labor with David on Monday yet he wasn’t born until Thursday. We returned from Christmas fully expecting to have the fourth addition to our family soon after New Year’s eve. But, God planned for everything. (I’m embarrassed to admit that I was surprised by that.) The body is reluctant to go into natural labor if the mother is sick. I came down with walking pneumonia and was feverish in mid-January, so I went each week to ensure that the baby was alright. As long as she remained healthy, the Doctor thought it best to allow her to continue to develop. (But, remember, we thought it was a him at this time.) I was convinced she was going to stay in there forever once February arrived. The doctor set up an appointment to induce me the morning of February 8.
However, we were reminded that God also has a sense of humor. I went into natural labor a bit before midnight on February 7. We decided to go ahead and sleep and arrive at the hospital at the scheduled time of 6:00. Yet, Lauren had other plans. Contractions kept coming closer and closer together, so we crept downstairs at around 2:00 am careful not to wake David and whispered to Mom and Dad, who were sleeping on the pull-out couch in the family room, that we were going on to the hospital. We often talked that was probably a God thing as well. They were already there due to the scheduled induction and didn’t have to rush to arrive.
When we arrived, I was already six centimeters dilated and the nurses wondered where we had been. I explained that I was waiting for the really painful contractions like David. They never came. Once admitted and epidural began (I had learned my lesson; I was doing this one natural.), labor went quickly. At around 6:00 am, the nurses began to scurry. You and I along with Mom laughed, because of the hours it took to push David out. Yet, they were right with asking me not to push. Once Dr. Watson arrived, we pushed twice and our little girl was here. We were so thrilled. We had what we had learned was a “King’s family”- a boy first, then a girl. And, you were definitely my king!
Mom (Nana) went to buy the frilliest dress she could find, and you exchanged the baby book so that we could get foot prints in it at the hospital.
The rest of the year was spent settling in with our precious bundles.
This was the only full year when we were a party of three. You were still working nights, and David was an “easy” baby. So, I remember many nights when you would come home at 3:00 am, and we would go out to eat breakfast at Denny’s, IHOP, etc. You embraced being a father and loved it.
We planned David’s first birthday party in Ashland’s Central Park, so that grandparents and family wouldn’t have to travel. It was a festive occasion, but you made even the mundane festive. At the party, your mother asked if I was pregnant, and I was quite offended. Yet, she was right, I was very newly pregnant with Lauren, which we would discover in the next month. We had such a rough time getting pregnant with David, and we wanted to children to be close together in age. So, we allowed things to happen in God’s timing after David was born. We were thrilled that the children were going to be twenty months apart.
We moved David over into the room next door to the nursery to give him a “big boy” room, and kept the nursery as it was with David, because the Doctors told us that this baby was a boy as well. (We’ll learn they were wrong in 1989.)
The rest of the year was spent getting ready for the newest bundle, enjoying playing with David, working, and the normal goings on of life.