Thursday, June 7, 2012

Pregnant and Pissed

Finding myself pregnant for the fourth time was a traumatic disaster. How did this happen? (Thanks for not commenting, peanut gallery.) Just keep in mind that I was 30 years old...long past child bearing years...and all three of my earlier children were potty trained, Little Bud was going to be in kindergarten - giving me a morning all to myself, my father had had a serious stroke and was having to relearn how to walk and complete simple tasks, my best friend moved to another state (best friends don't grow on trees, y'all!), no maternity insurance, no one wants to have a family of 6 over for dinner, no one wants to babysit for four kids, we couldn't afford to pay a babysitter for four kids, I was already limited to a $75 per week food and gas budget, and I was spoiled rotten with the three kids I already had. What are the chances that a fourth one will be pleasant? Not good.

You know what else wasn't good? My attitude. Shame on me. Women all over the world trying to get pregnant and not able. Here I am, a veritable baby machine, crying real tears over nature's blessings. Ugh. Chalk up another item on the list of Behaviors I'm Not Proud Of.

Twenty-two years of Jake. I have often considered myself the luckiest woman in the history of the world and he is part of the reason why. Since I'm not a good enough writer to weave his blessed life into a story, I'll list the reasons I love him so much.
  • He loves me. Oh, how he loves me. Come to think of it...he loves everyone.
  • His smile. His eyes have always crinkled up into little slits whenever he smiles for real.
  • Every day is an extreme for Jake. "This is the best day of my life" or "This is the worst day of my life". There is always light at the end of the tunnel for this guy. Unless the Miami Heat loses to the Celtics.
  • His hugs. We could package them and make million$
  • He still occasionally gets in bed with us. (This will not be good news for some of you.)
  • He is easy to please...just give him beef. And soooo fun to feed.
  • He gave new meaning to the word Joy. No, I did not want to have another baby. But once again, God knew that this baby would bring Joy to my life when I needed it most. 
  • He made me talk to God on a regular basis. When I began to get lazy about regular conversations with my Saviour, Jake would get a concussion. Sometimes two. When I finally became comfortable with my meager prayer life, Jake would call with a broken heart, or his grades hanging by a thread (he had to maintain a 3.0 to keep his scholarship at UWA...not easy for a mediochre student in addition to playing football,  missing Calculus III every other week because of away games, etc.) And Jake would play football and play it with a vengeance. You football moms understand the need to talk to God regularly within this concept. Having a college football player causes many of us to try and make deals with God. However useless that is, it sent me to the Bible for words of comfort and wisdom. 
The Lord is my light and my salvation 
    whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life—
    of whom shall I be afraid?
When the wicked advance against me
    to devour[a] me,
it is my enemies and my foes
    who will stumble and fall. 
Though an army besiege me,
    my heart will not fear; 
though war break out against me,
    even then I will be confident.
One thing I ask from the Lord,
    this only do I seek:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
    all the days of my life, 
to gaze on the beauty of the Lord
    and to seek him in his temple.

For in the day of trouble 
    he will keep me safe in his dwelling;
he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent
    and set me high upon a rock.
We, in the Burks family, are not ashamed to be caught praying for our children - no matter the issue. When your baby is threatened by some force other than yourself...whether it's a germ, physical need, behavior that is the opposite of what you've taught, (but similar to the way you are), addiction, accident, or the dreaded broken heart, mothers become someone they don't even know. It's like, "Who is living in my meek, compliant, polite, and reasonable body?" Because this person has none of those traits AT ALL.
Jake is a product of Barbara, Buddy, his siblings, and a lot of prayer. God has a plan for this boy.

To those of you who know know exactly what I'm talking about. To have a son that other people want as their own is a phenomenon. To have a son that loves like Jesus loved, that is a miracle. Yes, he's flawed. No, I'm not immune to those flaws. Yes, I've actually told him "no" and punished him. No, I don't want him to live with me the rest of his life. Lucky for us he wants to spend the rest of his life with a beautiful young woman named Allison. Allison is as crazy as Jake...only prettier. This should be an interesting combination.
Jake's last football game for UWA

I want to sincerely thank those who have poured into his life with us: Jourdan, Bud IV, and Andrea (his sister who raised him), and dozens of our friends who love him almost as much as we do. I am grateful for his choice in brides, as well. Allison, you are perfect for Jake. You are every bit the juvenile pal he loves having around and also the woman who has pledged to love him forever. You're breathtakingly beautiful and amazingly humble. I am so excited that you will be my daughter!

bow lesson.

baby lesson.

A day Jake's arms never unclenched.

With Diana...preparing to go off to college.
We love to pose.
Jake, your birthday was last week and I hate to think of you leaving us for more of life, but thats exactly what you need to do. There's so much more of life for you to touch. for you to breathe in. For you to influence with your clenched fists and flexed biceps, and squinty smile. We are not worried about you. You will be better. Better than all of us. Better because of all of us. Better because He who is in you is He who overcomes the world.

Brothers. Stirring up trouble and stuff.

Happy birthday month, Jbird. 
I love you.

"For the Lord has chosen Jacob to be his own, Israel to be his treasured possession."
“Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel(Bud's nickname for his brother) because you have struggled with God and with humans and have overcome.”


  1. Now that I've wiped my tears, I will try to comment. Barbara, I love your whole family more and more. Jake has a presence of warmth, of comfort, of love. I love being around him. I 'think' Maggie kind of thinks he is special too. All 4 of your children are dreamboats. You are my mentor....just wish I would have realized that years ago. Love you!

  2. Jake is the best. He even loved the mean lady from recreation...way back then and then not so long ago when her heart was tiny little that's a lover indeed!