Hi! I'm Lauren; a wife, mother, sister, daughter, and blogger? It feels strange to call myself that but I do enjoy posting on this here blog, so do what that what you will.
I was born and raised in the idyllic suburb of Highlands Ranch, Colorado and am a fourth generation native of the state. I love Colorado with my whole heart and despite my distaste for snow, I don't see myself ever leaving. I have a younger brother named Jake ("Crazy Uncle Jakie") and a younger sister named Kelly ("Auntie KK") and my parents are still happily together after almost 30 years of marriage. My dad is a successful attorney who owns his own firm, and my mom is the backbone of that firm.
I met Nate (N) when I was 17 and about to leave my hometown for Colorado State University in Fort Collins- about an hour away. We remained friends (talking constantly on AIM and Myspace!) and hung out almost every day during my fall and winter breaks. On New Years Eve 2006/7 we went out to dinner together while waiting on our other friends to return from a bar (I was newly 18 and he was a two months from being 21.) During dinner while he was laughing about something I said, it hit me. I was in love with him! We started dating a few days later, and his kind soul made the trip up to Fort Collins multiple times a week to see me.
Unfortunately it was during this time that my health took a turn for the worst. Although I had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and various anxiety disorders some years prior, I never took medication regularly. While at CSU I fell into a deep depression and started having serious problems with hypersomnia (unfortunately it was neither the first nor the last time I've dealt with that.) I didn't have a roommate and no alarm clock in the world could rouse me when I fell asleep. I ended up missing a significant amount of school, which distressed me even further as I have always been an incredibly tight-laced, straight A student. When it became clear that I was going to fail at least one of my classes due to attendance issues I made the difficult decision to withdraw from school. That way none of those grade would end up on my transcript, and I'd be clear to make another attempt at school in the future.
Complicating this was the fact that my relationship with my parents was not in a good place (I love them, just can't live with them!) and I knew I couldn't move home. Although N and I had only been dating for a few months I proposed that we move in together- he was currently living in his mom's basement. He agreed, but neither of us considered it to be a step in our relationship, I just needed somewhere to go. It was a risky decision but it obviously paid off wonderfully. N helped me get back on my medication and I thrived for a few years holding my first job, and later going back to school at Metropolitan State University in Denver.
In 2009, when we had been dating for two and a half years, we (mutually) decided that it was a good time to get engaged. I had recently had a bad health experience weaning off a medication and I didn't know if I'd be well enough to go back to school in the fall. At the time my parent's health insurance would only cover me if I was a student, and it'd be easiest if I could get on N's insurance. The proposal wasn't exactly romantic. I had ordered the ring I wanted in at our local Tiffany, we picked it up together and then went home. N placed the little blue bag on the coffee table and then turned on the TV. I was like, "yeah no I'm wearing that!" He was a little upset that he hadn't planned anything special out, but he turned off the TV (so romantic!) and got down on one knee. We wed exactly a year from the day he proposed. It was lucky he proposed on a Friday! ;)
2010 was an interesting year. Perhaps too interesting for a quick(ish) bio, and something I should make a post about one day. So here's a list in chronological order: I finished another semester of college, I worked tirelessly on our DIY wedding, we decided to buy a house, we went through the heartbreaking process of looking for houses and being outbid, we decided to buy a "fixer-upper" house that needed to be totally renovated, we worked tireless cleaning and fixing it, we moved in (even though it still needed a lot more work), we got married, N's father was tragically murdered, we found out I was pregnant (unexpectedly), I was incredibly ill during my entire pregnancy, and N lost the second job he had had for 7 years.
On May 3rd 2011 our beautiful daughter Reagan Olivia (R) was born. Unfortunately I suffered from severe post-partum depression (a post in the works!) but today that is all in the past. In May of 2013 I finally graduated from college with a degree in Political Science (and a 4.0!) A few weeks after graduation we decided to add to our family and adopted our sweet Bernese Mountain Dog, Hank!
Earlier this year, after months of testing, I was diagnosed with a stomach condition called Gastroparesis (GP), which means that my stomach doesn't empty properly. In April I underwent surgery to place a gastric neurostimulator (what I sometimes call a pacemaker) in order to help with my chronic nausea. The doctors also attempted to place a pyloric stent to help food make it's way out of my stomach, but the reverse happened and my stomach rejected the stent. With limited options for medications, living with GP has been a day-to-day struggle but I'm working on getting by.