We were really getting into the swing of things with this whole parenting thing! Beau was doing very well nursing and sleeping! Brandon and I were enjoying everything so much! We had worked so hard on his sleeping and we were finally feeling rested! He had Beau sleeping through the night by 16 weeks. From 9 pm to 8 am and it was amazing. Beau was five months old at this time and we were challenged in a way I never imagined could knock me down so hard.
Sweet little Beau Playing in his room a few nights before.
The weather was being predicted to be very rainy for a few days and it was likely that the river by our home would likely rise and flood some things. Most people didn’t think things would escalate quite like they did. The river rose to record-breaking levels and our home was flooded along with so many others. It was a widespread devastation to our area. Days before we had packed our most valuable belongings including Sawyer’s little memories pieces and pictures we made, our guns, my jewelry and other important things. I really did this in the event we needed to leave and couldn’t get home for a while due to the roads being closed. We tried to elevate some things in the house the morning we left, but we were thinking maybe a few inches at worst so we weren’t really prepared. We didn’t have much time because the water was creeping up so incredibly fast. I knew we needed to get out of our neighborhood soon because the water was getting really high at the entrance. We made it out and to my father in laws where we sat and waited for a few days for the water to stop rising.
These were all taken not long after we left that day. You can see that the entrance to the neighborhood had enough water that this one car was not able to pass.
When the water began to recede we were finally able to get to our house. We had 2 feet of water damage, which isn’t as bad as so many others, but bad enough for entire remodel and to kick us out of our home for a while.
These pictures were after we began cleaning. Beau’s bed had fallen over and I was devastated because it was Brandon’s baby bed. We chose not to salvage it, even though it was real wood, due to the disgusting water contents that had soaked almost every part of it.
We had a Colorado trip planned with Brandon’s business that we had to miss so we could clean our home out and keep mold from taking over. Mold growth is time sensitive so we had to stay home and miss our little family vacation. We were disappointed but we had work to do. We found out that our flood insurance didn’t have content coverage and we were not prepared for that. We were pretty upset but we knew we could replace those things in time since the irreplaceable things had been safe with us.
This was our picture of us standing on top of our mountain of belongings instead of the Rocky Mountains.
Our home was clean and ready for renovation very quickly and we were hoping for a quick turnaround but it took a while. This is no fault of anyone but the mass need of supplies and working people to get the job done. We had moved in with my mother in law and her sister who so graciously opened their home to us. We had gone from an entire home to just one room with a 5-month-old. This was tough. We must have done sleep training a million times during this time. When even slept in the living room many nights so Beau wouldn’t see us if he woke in the middle of the night. When we did sleep in the same room, we had to be so quiet and still because we were so scared to wake him and then send us right back to sleep training again.
The hardest part in this was when Brandon and I needed to have a private conversation due to a disagreement or whatever it was, there really wasn’t a good place. Many disagreements went unsettled and some were even a group conversation with his mom at times. I know I became short with him, impatient, and moody. I was sleep deprived, ready to go to my own space and so overly frustrated with waiting. I began to complain a lot, feel sorry for myself and just feel more negative than I had ever experienced. I think the only thing I was good at in these 5 months was being a mom to Beau. Somehow that was easy and came without frustration.
Brandon and I had been through a lot and I knew we were tough but this was just a different experience. With everything else, all eyes were kind of on us. We were the only ones struggling so we knew we had to be tough and show everyone who loved us that we were ok and we knew we would get through it. It was like performing under pressure, and we both felt confident in that. This situation was so different, everyone I knew was either remodeling their home, helping a loved one do the same or co-living as we were. And I think we just fell into the trap of being negative with the masses since we were one of many and there was no pressure to be strong. I wish I could say we handled this differently and some people may disagree with me, but when I look back I see a different woman in those few months. She is someone I never want to be again.
We returned home at the tail end of January and I began focusing on getting myself and our marriage back to where we both wanted to be. We knew we needed to work on patience, kindness, and selflessness. We needed to move out of just surviving and start living again. We had sat down and discussed this numerous times and with time, we were back to being loving and caring for one another and not just selfish, negative and whining individuals.
Post renovation pictures. Beau enjoying his toy cabinet.
I think it’s vital to mention that our marriage is something we hold very high and consider to be extremely happy with one another. We work hard on staying connected and focus on communication pertaining to our individual needs. We serve our Lord first in our home and we truly love one another. We are both considerate of the others feelings and act in a way to represent one another appropriately. So when we get just a little off, we usually work hard to get right back on track. This is something we are both very proud of and are so grateful for. Our foundation in our marriage has been so strong and our faith in our Father is so important. I just want to be sure I paint a real picture of our lives and don’t give you anything but the truth but also be sure you understand that we work for what doesn’t already come easy. I’m blessed to have an amazing, supportive, patient, loving and hard working husband that helps me keep it all together.
Hope you are enjoying this little story. It’s a pretty good description of our lives and I have been incredibly transparent through it all. Stay tuned to hear how the next year flew by and how we managed raising Beau following the loss of Sawyer without putting a bubble around him, even though that’s precisely what we wanted to do.
Denham Springs Mardi Gras Ball ’17.