Saturday, May 23, 2009


Sandy & I had been laying low for the last two weeks in a long, agonizing wait. A wait that tested our faith in ways that we have never been tested before.
Let me start by saying that we are a little old to be having a baby. It is known that older women tend to have more babies with birth defects, particularly with Downs Syndrome. So, at Sandy's age, it was suggested that she undergo testing and so we did. An initial blood test called a quad-screen showed an increased likelihood for this condition and so an advanced ultrasound was ordered. The baby showed some markers of the syndrome. On their own, these markers mean next to nothing, but combined with the other factors (age and quad results) did not look good for us. An amniocenteses was ordered and we were counseled with the question as to what we would do should the worse happen ( I will end speculation here and say that we would indeed have kept the baby). The results of an amnio can take up to three weeks, and so all we could do was that which I hate more than anything....Wait.
...and so wait we did. This was incredibly hard on Sandy but hard for me as well. I knew by the way my Glucose levels stayed high for no reason that I was stressed, but Sandy took it much harder. All the joy of having a baby were put aside while she worried about the outcome. The look on her face and in her eyes just broke my heart. She could hardly manage getting anything done as this was all she could think about. She even nearly decided to postpone finishing her last two college classes ever and forgo graduating. We both relied on faith more than ever before and walked to Church every evening to pray. We also received prayer from many friends and family members for which we are very grateful. Thankfully, Sandy was coaxed into sticking with her classes and finishing up by her friends, and so she did!
So finally, 11 days after the test, a voice message was left from her doctor to call her back. Let's just say it took Sandy some leg work to actually confirm the news, but at long last, the tests proved negative and showed that all is normal with our baby!!! and for those who don't already know, it's a girl!
We are still not completely out of the woods as there is one more issue to clear up, but at worst, it will be a treatable condition. More on that at a later date.
So, finally! Sandy and I are back to our normal selves and able to enjoy this pregnancy and move on with our lives and plans. For starters, we rushed to CSUF yesterday morning for Sandy to get her last minute cap & gown so that she could attend her graduation! not only that, but she graduated with honors! I am so proud of and for her. Now Sandy is finished with school and I get my wife back in the evenings least until the baby is born, then she is shared for 18+ years! ;-)

So now we are having a very happy memorial day weekend.

...and a big shout out and thank you to those who gave their lives for the simple pleasures we enjoy in this country!!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Frank & Karol's wedding

Recently Sandy & I had the pleasure of photographing the wedding of Frank & Karol, two friends of mine who I have known for many years from my Long Beach days.
Frank is from my home town of Cerritos but I didn’t know him until after high school. We had common friends and he was influential in inspiring me to move to Long Beach back in the early 90’s. My brother & I ended up in Belmont heights after finding an apartment referred by another common friend (go Cathee!) and we ended up with a couple of very cool neighbors, Karen and Karol. In these days, between our apartment, Karol’s, and our downstairs friends, we had some great parties and great times.
Frank & Karol didn’t actually hook-up until well after I moved away, but they have been an item for many years now and it’s about time that they tied the knot!
It was awesome to reconnect with the old Long Beach crew. I only wish the night were longer and that Sandy & I could have stayed longer, but with Sandy’s delicate state, partying is not always an option. ;-)
Cheers to Frank & Karol!