Posted (Tina) in All Posts on February-25-2008

Ella had a great night of sleep last night, thus Mom had a great night of sleep. She slept solid until 5am, I changed her diaper and repositioned her and she went back to sleep until 6:30am. That was fantastic for her!

Today was a tough day for me personally. For the past 6 weeks, I was using my remaining maternity leave to be with Ella. This morning, I gave my 2 week notice.

For some, it might seem like a dream come true. However, I have never pictured myself being a stay-at-home Mom.

The last several weeks we have prayed about the right decision. Finances are tough being out in Gainesville to begin with much less having me not provide income.

But the prayers kept confirming that regardless of my own self desires, the right decision was to quit my job and stay home with Ella for a season. We feel that she needs this in order to thrive.

I have been at my job for 6.5 years and it is a great job, thus it was tough for me to quit.

Grandma Eusey was around to help out with Ella, so I could properly give notice. It helped that Ella was full of smiles. It was just fun to be around her. As I was working, I could see them in the background having a good time.

This is why it was so strange when things turned this afternoon. Ella’s endurance started to get low. Everything seemed like it was tough for her, so almost anything made her fussy.

We tried oral feeding again. Several times, she was not interested. But throughout the day, she took 40ccs again. It just seemed like it was a lot more work and more sessions to get the 40ccs. That’s okay, it is still great progress for her.

In the afternoon, we tried another walk. It was okay initially and then she started to cough. Once she was not able to catch her breath, she became frustrated and inconsolable. After having her turn a lovely blue/purple shade, we turned right back around and headed for the apartment. We hope to try again soon.

By the evening, she was overtired and was not consolable. Josh was working with headphones on in the other room and had to pause several times, just to check and make sure everything was okay. She was so upset and was crying so loud, the oxygen sat at double the normal amount for most of the afternoon and evening (1 liter).

Today was a day of highs and lows emotionally. It would warm my heart when she was smiling and having such a good time. Yet, quitting my job and dealing with her numerous meltdowns was tough.

As I end the day, I am reminded that although things look seemingly impossible and sometimes bleak from my perspective, my job is to trust and obey God who ordains everything.

Thank you for the continued prayer support for all three of us.

Psalm 37:5
Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him.

Julie on February 25th, 2008 at 9:37 pm #

Stay-at-home motherhood–the best and worst and hardest and most satisfying job you’ll ever do.

I would *highly* recommend that you find some kind of playgroup or support group, perhaps even one that specializes in special needs children. Just being able to talk about what’s going on with your child–and have some adult conversation now and then–was a lifesaver for me.

Being that close to Shands, I would hope you’d be able to find such a group to meet your needs.

It is hard sometimes. (Coming off a terrible week with my son, I can’t honestly tell you it’s all good!) But on other days, I wouldn’t trade it for a desk job ever.

Dawn (Tamara's Friend) on February 25th, 2008 at 10:14 pm #

Hi Tina,
I know this is a huge step for you and your family. I have been a stay at home Mom for 19 years… it is hard and thankless, but the most rewarding thing I could ever have done. My oldest is 19 now and I look back and I am glad I was home with him. I know you won’t regret your desicion. No one will love precious Ella like her Mommy. Enjoy fulltime Motherhood!

Lisa (Ms. Texas) on February 25th, 2008 at 10:19 pm #


You will be SOOOO missed by all of us Rent.com girls! I was sad and happy to hear the news today. Sad because your such a great leader and friend. Happy because I know there is nothing more precious in this world to you than the “Bun”. I follow the blog daily! I feel like I am right there with you…but lately it has been one sided as I have not been replying.

I pray that the lord gives you divine peace and supports your decision financially and emotionally. I know that “his callings” are sometime the most challenging and rewarding…especially when the flesh gets in the way, but you are truly amazing…an angel…his angel and he will protect you, Josh and Ella!

On a lighter note** the award for cutest BUN ever in a dramatic role…. is ELLA!!!!

Love and Blessings to you all!!

Joel Snyder on February 25th, 2008 at 10:32 pm #

Ella, You look like you and your Grandma are having a lot of fun togeather. Sorry you had a rough afternoon but ups and downs are part of the game these days. Tina keep up the good work as Ella’s “SUPER MOM” all the other things will fall into place. I will check in on you folks later. Love, Grandpa!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Laz Fam on February 25th, 2008 at 10:59 pm #

Sweet friends ~ someone wise once said to me, “Just because a decision is right doesn’t mean it’s easy.” The older I get, the truer I find that statement. I pray you will rest in the knowledge that you are in His will, and don’t be burdened by your emotions. They are part of how He created us. Just don’t take your eyes off the One who created us! 🙂
And don’t even get me started on the blessings and glories of being stay-at-home mom, cuz you know I’ll talk so much you’ll never get your precious sleep! 🙂
Blessings ~ Kirsten (proud mom of the beautiful and amazing Julianna & Bodie!)

Gloria & Red Jacobsen on February 25th, 2008 at 11:42 pm #

Hi! Mary,what a darling picture of you and your beutiful grandaughter!How wonderful on this vist that Ella is home from the hospital,despite her ups and downs she seems to be a very happy baby and she is so responsive to people and her surroundings.It’s great you can be there with Tina & Josh! Lots of prayers for Ella’s continued recovery. Tina you and Josh made a great choice to be with Ella no one could ever love her,and know her as well,as you two do,you are both amazing parents. I always felt, I could go back to work but I could never bring back their childhood.When they did get a older I did go back to work,maybe just to prove to myself I could ,after all the years of being home when they were little ,but not really for that long,because I found missed my time with them and as it was,,and with after school childcare and household help ,when I could get it and after taxes I really did;nt come out that far ahead,I really did’nt have to work,what with my late husband working and he was happy,when I quit.We were’nt rich but we got by and the kids got the things they needed most important they got us.The the good part about working was though,Tina,I got to meet your Mom.and we’ve been friens these many years.But,,I must admit,although it was tough on my ego I was happy to quit ,get back home and not having to juggle so many things on one plate. It was nice at that time my kids were older and we could do fun simple things together like going to the beach or pool and not have the extra pressure of a job. Take care,lots of prayers for all of you!! Gloria & Red!

Matt, Abby, Austin & Caed on February 26th, 2008 at 6:59 am #

It’s definitely a tough decision for Mom to stay home, especially because the bills never seem to drop along with the income…Abby and I keep waiting for them to but they haven’t yet. Abby and I made the decision for her to stop working when she was about 5 or 6 months pregnant (the stress was really getting to her and starting to affect her health) and now that she’s a full time stay at home Mom neither one of us would have it any other way. She gets so many sweet moments with Caed (lots of smiles and coos and stuff I miss out on during the day) that she would have missed otherwise. Plus she’s there when Austin gets home from school. God is in charge and knows your needs. Abby and I are here for you three (she’s chomping at the bit to bring supper over one night soon!) We want to help out in any way we can (maybe Josh and I can tend to the kids one day and you and Abby can have a girls day and just do “big-girl” stuff) We continue to pray for you three every day. It can be really hard sometimes (especially when you’re worn down) to stand in faith. It’s a good thing that we belong to a God who meets us where we are.
When you get a chance read Matthew 6:25-34.

the Lizotte family on February 26th, 2008 at 7:07 am #

AWWW Tina! I understand the hurt having to leave your job can pose. I have no doubt that you will be able to come back. In time as Ella starts to learn how to communicate you will be able to teach her how to manage her own breathing better, and as time goes by she will get stronger and her lung will continue to develop it’s full size. It wont be forever and she does seem worth all the work. Sylvia was also a very vocal infant, I think this is why she was able to develop her communication skills as early as she did. You guys will do great, i know you will.
I’d love to see you, but i’ve been fighting some sort of congestion or allergy. I hope I can sneak out ot town to see you guys soon.
Big Hugs

Williamsburg on February 26th, 2008 at 8:04 am #

Tina, as everyone else has said, we just want to affirm your courage in this decision, just as you have shown in every challenging decision you’ve had to make along this amazing journey. Of course we know God will be with you, but not being able to see the day-to-day workings out of that knowledge is hard. Seems pretty natural to me to miss the life of work and yet be ready to move forward on the path of being home with Ella at the same time. You are a truly amazing mom, wife, daughter, sister, friend and colleague and we bless, affirm and pray for you in each of the hats you’re called to wear in a day. Hugs and love always. XOXOXO

lisa on February 26th, 2008 at 8:31 am #

Tina, have you looked into Paid Family Leave? It kicks in after the maternity disability ends and can cover bonding w/ a new child as well as taking care of a sick family member….it’s for 3 months if I recall. Not sure how it works where you live though. Anyhow, just a thought!

Best to you and your family…Ella’s blog is the first thing I read each morning! 🙂

Joan and Steve Odell on February 26th, 2008 at 9:47 am #

Dear Tina – what a day of challenges for the West family. Tough decisions but I truly believe you and Josh have made the right ones. There will come a time when you look back and know it was the right thing to do. It is amazing how God rearranges our lives and in His own time and way. You are a very dear child of God who has been blessed by our Father with many abilities to fulfill His promises. The ‘right’ decisions can be some of the hardest ones to make for so many reasons. Our prayers will be for your peace of mind and that the transition to a full time Mom will be fulfill you in ways you weren’t aware of. Josh, prayers for you as you take on your new role as husband and father. The two of you have come through some mighty storms and continue to rise above them with your faith ever strengthened. Our love and prayers are with both of you and dear Ella – you may not see our faces but please know we are with you. Hugs and prayers – Steve and Joan

John & Estela on February 26th, 2008 at 12:29 pm #

Wow Tina, didn’t expect that! But Praise God for helping you two make such a wise choice for Ella. Both my boys a health and strong and have sometimes felt quilty for WANTING to continue to work. I love you two and know that this choice is right for this season. God Bless-

Steve & Veronica Johnson on February 26th, 2008 at 8:45 pm #

wow – that is HUGE news! we’re happy for Ella that you’re able to pull this off and we pray that God will continue to give you peace about the decision.

Chambers Family on February 26th, 2008 at 9:00 pm #

Congratulations on becoming an “official” full time Mommy. It is the hardest job you will ever take! I was actually wondering how you would be able to go back to work with little Ella since she seems to be a special needs baby right now. Once you get settled and she grows into her little body better – you might go back. I agree with the post about playgroups or Mom’s groups. When Ella is able to go out and about – they are a tremendous support and relief when you need it. I think you have the longest comments from this post!

At the end of the day You and Josh know what is best for Ella. I hope you are able to catch up on some more sleep! That will really help Everyone!

Heidi on February 27th, 2008 at 8:27 pm #


Hi Josh and Tina,
I’ve been reading your blog all along…sorry I’ve never stopped to say hello but I am thinking of you all the time.

All my love to you two, I love you guys!

Post a comment

Name:  (required)
Email:  (required)