Thursday, August 26, 2010


The following truths I have written in a list-type format in my prayer journal so that on those days when I just ache and long to see my baby, I can dwell on these things instead of throwing a pity-party... much more profitable this way.

Malachi lives as a whole person in a glorified body.

Malachi is perfectly free:
-never have a selfish desire
-never utter a useless word
-never perform and unkind deed
-never think a sinful thought

Malachi is experiencing:
-no more sorrow
-no more suffering
-no more pain

Malachi is living completely:
-free of persecution
-free of division
-free of disunity
-free of hate
-free of quarrels, disagreements, and disappointments

Malachi is experiencing perfect comfort.

Malachi is experiencing perfect receiving and giving of love.

Malachi is experiencing perfect fullness of joy.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Three Months

We miss you, Malachi. Can't believe it's been three months since we said goodbye.

three months

Today officially marks three months since Malachi died.

I specifically waited until the end of the day to make mention of this because part of me really dislikes that look of pity people get when they realize we've reached another milestone like this.

God has definitely given us the grace to fight this battle. It takes work to really focus on the truth of the situation and to be thankful that Chi is whole and healthy and complete in heaven with our Savior. The days that are the hardest continue to be those with milestones (like today) and those where I sulk in self-pity and feel sorry for myself dwelling on the fact that I have four children--only two of which currently have beating hearts.

Feel free to pray for me as I continue to trek on with this pregnancy. Pray alongside me for an increased attachment and love for this baby. I'm just not exactly where I thought I would be in that area with this child. I wholeheartedly believe that is a prayer God will answer.

On a lighter note, can you believe I've still got THREE MONTHS of growing ahead of me!??!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

talkin' smack

While playing soccer with daddy in the living room...

Emma: Um... I need a goal.
John: Well, just shoot between my legs. Use my legs as the goal.
Emma: I'll use your FACE as a goal.....but don't worry. I won't hurt you.

*I seriously wish you could have experienced this live with us and the eruption of laughter thereafter.

first actual joke

*this came about after she had seen a bunch of dogs around our apartment recently--of all sizes.

"What did the big puppy say to the little puppy?....You look like a chewy toy!!"

Monday, August 23, 2010

Packing greivances

Em: I want my doctor stuff.
Me: sorry it's packed.
Em: but I need to protect baby Taylor.
Me: sorry babe you'll have to pretend.
Em: fine. Where's my 'puter? (computer)
Me: all packed.
Em: but I need to check my blog.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


Emerson was playing with her kitchen and making food for a picnic. As she was setting the plates for each person, I overheard the following...

One for mommy...
and daddy...
and emma...
and malachi...
and baby brother.

So thankful that to her Malachi is still a part of this family. Brings tears to her mama's eyes.


So blogging has gotten away from me. I think I needed a break. Clearly, it was the easiest way to keep people up to date with all things Malachi. It was a way for me to forceful process all that was going on and show off the cutest special needs kid you'd ever "meet" (blog pics count, right?)... I've been great at keeping up with other people's blogs thanks to Google Reader which I adore, but obviously not so much on the writing end of things. I've got a bazillion things swirling around in this head, but not enough clarity of thought at the end of the day to write an organized post. Well, I'm gonna write anyway, forgive the rambling. (and don't hold it against me if I fail to throw in a pic or two)

Here's what we've been up to... finding a house.

That's about it. Okay, so that encompasses enough to keep a pregnant lady home with a toddler completely exhausted most of the time. We scoured the internet listings looking for homes in our price range. Actually met with our realtor and viewed around 20 homes. Bid on a HUD house. Lost to a higher bidder. Narrowed our search down to a move-in ready place with a yard and another HUD fixer-upper. Bid on the HUD house and offer was accepted! We've met with the mortgage broker and locked in a 4.5% rate (AMAZING!). Now we're in the process of setting up an inspection and getting HUD approval to have utilities turned on and all that jazz. We will obviously feel much better about the house when/if the inspection turns up nothing crazy big. We have to be out of the apartment by the end of the month (we put in a 60-day notice a few weeks after Chi died b/c it's still weird just being here). We're packing. We will be moving in with John's parents while we wait for closing on the house and then also while John fixes up the house and gets it ready for us to move in. We will have to replace all the flooring and the previous owners were crazy paint happy so that will need to be changed as well. Unfortunately, John still has a full-time job he must attend to during this whole process. And, I won't be of much assistance due to the pregnancy and toddler who needs to be taken care of. So I'm gathering ideas for the design and decor of the new place.

Now if only I'd take it easy during the day and listen to my husband and let him do most of the packing.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Travel Bug

And the bracelet travels on...

Some new friends we've "meet" through the blogging world have decided to keep the memory of Chi alive by creating a geocache travel bug. From the website:
What is a Groundspeak Travel Bug?
Simply put, a Groundspeak Travel Bug is a trackable tag that you attach to an item. This allows you to track your item on The item becomes a hitchhiker that is carried from cache to cache (or person to person) in the real world and you can follow
its progress online.
What does a Travel Bug do?
It's really up to the owner of the bug to give it whatever task they desire. Or no task at all. The fun of a travel bug is inventing new goals for the Travel Bug to achieve. One Bug's goal may be to reach a specific country, or travel to 10 countries.
How do Travel Bugs work?
Each Travel Bug has its own unique tracking number stamped on it. This tracking number is used as proof by the user that they found the item. It also doubles as a way for the user to locate the personal web page for the travel bug.
I will include any pictures or locations that I am notified of regarding the Little Man of Steel Travel Bug!

Saturday, August 14, 2010


Mama: Emma you're starting to look like your daddy again.
Emma: But he's not that cute though.

Friday, August 13, 2010

adventures in potty training.

emma was explaining to me that she had a "chudgie"... a what!?!?... "a chudgie," pointing to her bottom... lightbulb goes off in momma's head---a wedgie!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

24 week OB visit

Just the stats:

BP: 117/70
weight: 170 (total gain of 15/up 6 from 20-week visit)
abdomen: 24 cm (right on target)
baby HR: 150 and strong
baby activity: TONS of consistent movement.

Had some minimal bleeding last week which has prompted me to take things a little easier. The doc said minimal lifting if at all possible and nothing over 30 lbs, period. Good thing Emerson is right around 29 these days :)

will add pic later.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

pride in suffering

I admit, lately I've been all "me, me, me..." I brought myself to a place of self-pity--a horrible rut that I definitely do not recommend.

One of the songs we heard at church tonight had the following lyrics:
"I made Myself known from the beginning of time. What more do you need to see?"

God is enough. He is sufficient in all and for all things. He answered my prayers and healed my baby. What more do I want?

Yes, I miss Malachi, but my source of joy can only come from God--not my children. My peace will come from within--not of anything that I can produce of myself, but rather that which I can receive freely through the working of the Holy Spirit who lives inside me.

I want to worship God. I was created for that very purpose. i have allowed my circumstances and my emotions to hinder my ability to worship. I have tried to correct this of my own volition--my way. But even if I could accomplish that task on my own, it would make me self-sufficient. It is not possible to worship God on my own. I need Him. I must pray for the ability to humble myself before His throne and find joy solely in Him. I need His help to worship Him. Even old saints prayed to this same end in Psalm 90...

Relent, O LORD! How long will it be?
Have compassion on your servants.

14 Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love,
that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.

15 Make us glad for as many days as you have afflicted us,
for as many years as we have seen trouble.

I will choose not to waste this suffering, this time of affliction. This is the road God knows is best for Marissa Sharbaugh. Pray that my hardship would be a testimony of His glory. Pray that God would continue to put the pieces back together and make me whole. God is good. God is faithful. God is true.

spacial awareness

Mommy: Emma, do you want Daddy to buy us a house?
Emma: YES!?!? (drops hands to her waist in defeat)... but it won't fit in the car.

evening service

We had Emerson sit in the evening service with us tonight at church. Toward the end, like every other two-year-old, she started getting a little antsy. I quietly explained to her that there would be one more song, pastor would talk some, then he would pray and we would be all done.

Pastor ended his prayer, "And all God's people said..." to which the congregation responded, "Amen." Emma said nice and loudly, "Amen? Now we can go!"

Friday, August 6, 2010

Just the Dark Before the Morning

Do you wonder why you have to feel the things that hurt you. If there's a God who loves you, where is He now? Maybe, there are things you can't see and all those things are happening to bring a better ending. Some day, some how, you'll see.

Would you dare to believe that you still have a reason to sing. Because the pain you've been feeling can't compare to the joy that's coming. So hold on, you got to wait for the light. Press on and just fight the good fight. Because the pain you've been feeling, it's just the dark before the morning.

I was looking up the lyrics for this song (Josh Wilson--Before the Morning) because I wanted to include them on this blog. In doing so, I came across a short video that was done in regard to the meaning behind the story. It reminded me of a few of the miracles we were able to witness in Chi's short life. Head over to to his site and check it out if you have a few minutes.

a taste....

As I was looking up the lyrics for a song by Josh Wilson called Before the Morning, I came across a short video that was made as a background for why he wrote the song in the first place. Friends of his have a story somewhat similar to ours. But most importantly, it reminded me of a taste of all the amazing miracles we witnessed God perform firsthand in the life of our baby boy.

First for the similarities...

1. Both of our families were blessed with a healthy, beautiful, smart daughter as our first child.
2. When Malachi was born and an echo was performed of his heart, so many things were wrong. Although he had four pumping chambers, his first surgery would be the same as if he were diagnosed with hypoplastic left heart syndrome. Malachi's open heart surgery was performed at a week or two of age as he had a more urgent surgical repair that needed to take place first.
3. The daunting site of seeing our babies hooked up to so many machines and wires and cables both before and after surgery.
4. We would not be able to afford the medical bills on our own.
5. We were told our marriage would certainly suffer and were told the divorce rate for parents in these situations skyrockets.
6. We were told Chi would have minimal, if any, quality of life.
7. Our heart surgeon was a believer.
8. Neither set of parents knew what to do--except fight for our baby!

Beyond the similarities of our situations, there are so many miracles God chose to work out particularly in our family--tailored to fit our son. It would be very beneficial to me to go back and try to recall as many of those miracles as possible, but here are simply a few that come to mind...
1. Nothing showed up on ultrasound. No abnormalities or dysfunctions, nothing. I've come to think of this as a good thing, a blessing. If something had shown up at the 20-week ultrasound, I wouldn't even be able to imagine the crazy mess I would have been starting at that point. Instead, God was working in my heart and John's heart to prepare us (granted, at the time, we had envisioned preparation for moving to China).
2. Malachi's heart abnormalities played out the same was as that of a left hypoplastic syndrome. No doctor could explain to us why his fourth chamber was working.
3. There is a small vessel that provides oxygen to the baby's blood stream while in utero which closes a day or two after delivery. This vessel stayed open long enough for the doctors to accurately assess Chi's heart anatomy and begin medication to keep that vessel open until heart surgery could be performed (after recovery from his TEF repair).

Like I said, those are just a few of the miracles. Doctor after doctor has told us that there is no human explanation for how Malachi survived nearly seven months. He truly was our Little Man of Steel--as long as God would all him to be.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

not sure what to say

Writing has come as a struggle to me as of late. I mostly feel like I don't really have anything encouraging or exciting to say, so I remain silent. I'm learning though that silence doesn't really make things easier. I am so thankful for a few close friends and family who I have been able to talk to at my low points without fear of judgment and remind me of God's truth.

I know that there is a greater purpose that I may never grasp to everything surrounding Malachi and his impact on our lives. I know that one day it will be easier and the tears won't come quite so frequently. The memories won't be quite so fresh. I don't want to be depressing. I don't want to be completely self-centered. I really don't want it to seem as if I have lost hope. I want to be real. I want to share this with you. I don't want to feel like I'm shouldering this burden alone. It's not easy and I certainly don't have it all together. But I know God has a plan and God has a purpose. He wants to bring glory to Himself and for some reason He has allowed for me to be a part of that.

On my good days, I anxiously anticipate being the kind of woman God is using all of this to transform me into. On the bad days, I wish I was already there...

mom and dad

Mama is my best friend in the WHOLE word... and daddy is my boyfriend.