Friday, November 30, 2007

This has been a rather difficult day. Well, maybe difficult is not the right word. Its just one of those days where everything feels so off and you are just holding your breath waiting for it to be over. Brittney gave me some wonderful advice this afternoon... she said it would all be better in our home if we would read the bible every night. Isn't that priceless? It just crushed my prideful heart and left a gaping wound... if she only could understand how much I long for things to be as they were intended in our home.

I guess I could sum up the day as a day needing much prayers... We have been battling a stomach bug in our house this entire week. The kids stayed home today from school. I just needed them to have time to get well. I went to therapy and got fussed at for not coming for 10 days... I wanted to tell them to spend just five minutes in my shoes and they would see how much of a miracle it is that I have made it as many visits as I have. Now what I really need is therapy for my heart!!! (Just kidding...sort of.) The last 10 days have been so insane.

When we I got home we worked on cleaning up the house so we could put the tree up and then went out for lunch. I was impressed that lunch went as well as it did....two of the boys also got haircuts. Jason's hair has been so wildly out of control that he has been calling himself a mad scientist. The other day he did his hair with this huge curly wave in the front and said he was a Frenchman!

Unfortunately, the day went down hill from there... I am just a scrooge... I really need a heart adjustment. I don't know what is wrong but I just really am having a hard time with the noise level and the demands and just everything. I honestly just want to lay down and sleep for a very long time. It kills me to think of how many bad memories my attitude is creating... I want desperately to have fun with my family but everything feels like work. Thank God after a little break we were able to come together and get the tree up and the night calmed down.

The most concerning part about the day is that Jonathan is sick. He is really having a hard time today. He has been unable to take any of his medicine today. He is very nauseated. His stomach is upset. I am worried because his sodium levels were already high and he is at high risk for dehydration. Please pray for this bug to pass quickly from him. I am positing a picture of his hand. You can see how his finger is curled up. ONe of the other brain tumor parents mentioned that her son lost full function of his hands and they used an amino acid called Glutamate to bring back the function. I have been trying to find this medicine for the past year without any success here locally. But I am going to hunt some down and see if it will bring some improvement.

I guess now that the house is quiet and everyone is asleep I better join them. Have a great night!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Jon had his chemo this morning. His regular doctor was not there today. Overall, he is ok. But there is something weird happening with his hands. We are not sure what is going on or what is happening. Both of his pinkie fingers stay in a crooked almost drawn up position. They can be physically straightened but when he opens his hands and stretches them out his pinkies don't follow. The dr. today seemed concerned that there maybe something going on in his brain... so we are going to wait one more week and if it is still going on I am going to call the oncologist in Atlanta and see what she says. He is supposed to have another scan on Jan 2.

In the meantime a nasty stomach bug has made its way through our house. I started it with a vicious headache and throwing up on Tuesday. Josh soon followed. Mya was struck by it in the middle of Target tonight... if you end up there stay clear of the dressing room and the boys clothing section!!! Britt went to bed with a bucket. Its quite lovely around here. I think we are going to all stay home tomorrow and in our jammies all day... maybe a quarantine for the weekend will be enough to get everyone well.

Thank you for your prayers for us. I have a feeling this may be a long night and I may have plenty of time to consider those posts of deeper meaning that I have been wanting to write.

Monday, November 26, 2007

I have been quite neglectful of this blog lately... I guess too much to write about but I just can't find the words. Honestly, its more like having the energy and time to think through what I want to write. Its been an amazing few weeks or so of seeing God's hand in circumstances. Its been good and it has been incredibly difficult.

Just a quick update on the kiddos... Josh was supposed to go to Atlanta today for an "urgent" appt...but Shawn went to Ohio, it was raining sheets of rain, and the van is having issues. So I canceled it. Ever since I made his appt because of increasing severe migraines almost daily he has not had one headache. What is up with that? So we are going to be in Atlanta the first part of January for a few days and we will see whats up then.

Jon is doing ok... he is having some problems with food tasting nasty...thus he really eats very little. Thank God for chocolate milk. That is probably the only thing that has kept him from losing weight. He is quite thrilled that he has lost enough hair that his hair will now spike!!!!

Everyone else is just plugging along... we are waiting for word about whether we will be a part of the team that is opening the brand new Carmax in Colorado Springs. If so then we will be heading back west in a few short months. A few months ago we would have been wholeheartedly ready to we are starting to reconnect with people again, get involved in a church where we really could be a part of it, and seeing God move in out hearts and lives and now we are slightly torn. BUt as it is in so many other ways we are sure that God is preparing us for what lies ahead... and this time of growth will be so important for the next stage.

I will update more soon...just as soon as I can formulate the thoughts into words.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Brittney's Avatar named Abby
Yahoo! Avatars

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Update on Lukas...

I picked up his blood work today and after we went over it and did more research it looks a little more encouraging. It looks like there is a very good possibility that his platelets being high are due to being severely anemic. Thank you for your prayers. He goes back to the dr. in a few weeks...we will keep praying for them to have wisdom and the ability to help.

Please pray for Lukas and his family today. This is my sweet nephew. He has been through so much physically in his few short months. Just this past week the doctors have begun to investigate whether he has some sort of blood disease. He has the symptoms of a very rare form of leukemia but it almost never occurs in children so they are trying to to look for other possible causes.
My sister and her husband are seeking the Lord for wisdom to know whether to push for more aggressive investigation, seek second opinions, or just wait out these next couple of weeks. It is a frustrating and emotionally tormenting situation to be in.
Also, pray for Jon today as well. He goes in for his chemo this morning. Already he is not starting the day off very well. He is nauseated so he is having trouble with his meds. He couldn't take them last night. I am sure his sodium levels will be high today. We don't have milk (since I haven't made it to the store yet) so he is not drinking. And he has been awake since before 5 and is quite on edge. Pray for God to give me patience... I am not in the mood to deal with his melt downs today!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

I just have to share.... Tonight I made a special holiday/winter dinner for my children. They didn't all eat it or enjoy it but I know they will remember this meal for a long time. It was fun to make for them...


Meatball Snowmen complete with mashed potato snow

Marshmellow snowballs

French fries for arms and for Jon to dip in honey mustard. Also, Jason ate his "snowballs" attached to french fries dipped in his peaches! Yumm...

Hot Chocolate with peppermint mocha coffee cream and two candy canes to stir with.

I must tell you that these past two nights have been the least stressful and most enjoyable with my kids. It takes a little bit longer to get them through the night time routine but at least this way their needs are met and they are going to bed with a full tummy and a full heart. It has made me feel so much better... knowing that I am spending time with them reading the bible, praying, laughing, playing, and reading books together individually and together before bed. It is funny but it almost takes less energy to do it right than it does to do it wrong!!! Thank you for your prayers and kind encouragement my friends these past few days. I am very blessed.

What Good Moms Do...

These pictures made me think of a conversation I had with Jason last night. We read a book together before bed. This is not his favorite thing to do. He was in a big hurry to get back to watching a movie. After we were done reading I said " Don't you think that is what good moms do? Make their kids read stories before they go to sleep? Isn't it good to practice reading? " Jason sat still and quiet for a moment and all of sudden replied, " Good moms let their sons tackle them!" and he jumped in my arms. And in that moment my heart warmed and said one small prayer- thank you God for strengthening me to be a good mom in this moment.

Maybe for the next few days I will celebrate the ways I know God is strengthening me to be a "good" mom in his definition of good. This may be a good way to keep the negative away!

Have a wonderful day!!!!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Fall is coming closer to an end and winter is about to descend upon us. I fear though that winter descended long ago upon my heart and made it icy cold. Fortunately, God doesn't let it stay that way too long before he breaks through with his truth and sets me free from the icy prison. Its sometimes quite painful as the ice melts and he blows his warm truth and love upon us. Its hard work to emerge from a lifetime of wrong thinking and feeling and actively choose to be transformed by his word. That's where I am today... wanting desperately to be freed and transformed. I have wandered too long in this icy prison!
God always surprises me in how he chooses to orchestrate circumstances and timing to bring about transformation in our lives. No matter how painful it is I am always so encouraged to see his hand in something that is happening in my life. Its like his reminder that he is in it and he is working so I can trust him no matter how bad it hurts or doesn't make sense.
This morning I found myself drawn back to a book I read recently called " Loving God with All Your Mind" by Elizabeth George. The truths in this book are life changing. Although I still have not grasped the truth and applied completely I know that God is using it to change how I view and respond to life. I am praying God will make it a natural part of my life to look at things through his word, his perspective, and the lens of truth. The main premise of the book is to think only upon what is truth. Not what I think, others think, or circumstances may be or appear to be. But the truth...
One area that I am really struggling in is whether I am able to be the mom and wife I know my family needs. Deep in my heart I really feel like a failure in this area. I really have believed that it would be better for my family if I was not a part of their lives. I live in fear that I will destroy them due to harsh words, lack of training, wrong choices etc. I am not really doing anything more or less than most... just struggling with surviving. The conflict comes in wanting to do and be so much more and than falling short. The more I think I am not a good mom or wife the more I become depressed and despair and then become suffocated by this thinking and it results in negative actions. When I feel and think that I am doing a good job then I really do a good job... I have positive interaction and motivation with them. So even here the key is to think the truth and not believe the paralyzing lies that Satan sends in order to destroy me!
The truth for me today is this: God chose ME to be the perfect mate for my husband. I know he brought us together to bring him glory and to use us greatly. Regardless of our choices or circumstances this is the truth. So I will choose to act on that truth today...any other thoughts are not true and are not of God.
God chose ME to be the mother of five wonderful children. This means that he has gifted me and equipped me with all that I need to be able to meet their needs, to teach them and live for them the truths of Jesus, and to be all that being a mom means. What this also means is that he did not make me in the image of all the other mothers out there. That is not to be my standard... perhaps someone else has children who are calm, well behaved, the image of "perfect". Those children are not my children. I can not look at that example and measure my success on whether my kids turn out the same as someone else's children. I have been given 5 unique little hearts to shape and mold according to their own needs and personalities. God has his plan and the way he made me fits into the way they need to be mothered. Simply, no one else could be a better mother to them than me. That is the truth...
So today my energy will be focused on being that mother for them. I will seek God for the wisdom to know how to raise them according to his standard and plan for their individual hearts. Rather than wasting my energy feeling sad and despairing over failure because they are not "good" like other people's kids. In reality they are good... they are full of life, energy, excitement, and adventure. They have dealt with more in their few short years than most other kids ever will in their lifetime...and the truth is they love Jesus. Nothing else really matters does it?

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Calgon Take Me Away!!!
(my version of calgon comes in a hot cup of any variety...starbucks, dunkin donuts, home brewed with lots of cream. Any way I can find it as long as it is hot, creamy, and frothy it will do the trick! Now off to put my kids to bed so I can brew me a fresh cup of peppermint mocha with peppermint mocha cream...mmmmmm)

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

How do babies grow up so fast? This one is really bothering me today. I am not ready for her to grow up. Life is too crazy, too much of a mess right now. I am scared that she will move so quickly into the next stage of life and I will not be able to make it a positive one. Does that make sense? I don't want to wound her heart like I know I have so many times in the other kids. I don't want to... it happens and I hate it. So I look at her and it makes me cry- how does it change so fast. I want to enjoy her a little longer.

As you can probably tell it has been a rough day. I guess what goes up must come down. I have been on a "mountain top" for the past 2 days. Rejoicing and anticipating change in my life, marriage, family, heart. And here on the brink of a great victory comes a crashing weight. The battle is tough, my friends. Some days it feels like I am drowning. It sucks the energy out of me. I feel so unable to be some one's wife, some one's mom, some one's friend. Ugly attitudes creep in in the midst of my weariness and leaves me feeling the unbearable burden of guilt after I have bit some one's head off.

Pray for us tonight if you so feel led. We must walk this life together. I need you. You need me.

I am off to rest in the shadow of his mighty wings...I just might not come out for a very long time!

Brittney had quite the scare last night. The kids were outside climbing in trees while Jon was having his school with his teacher. Josh came running in the house upset and grabbed my phone to call Shawn. He was determined Daddy had to come home and deal with Jason- his words to Shawn sounded like...Jason...Can't breath... down... It touched my heart to see Josh feel so protective of his sister all though his facts were slightly off. Poor Jason was on the verge of being attacked by his brother for something he didn't do.

What happened? Britt fell out of tree. She was reaching for Jason's socks and fell face first out of the tree on to the ground. It knocked the wind out of her (thus the not breathing part) and she caught her lip on a branch so she had a little blood. She tried to brace herself with her arms so they got quite the jolt. But no broken bones. She was rescued by "angels" disguised as leaves.

It is never boring at our house. One drama or adventure after another. One heart ache after another. One tear, one smile. One fight, one giggle. But always busy and loud, and chaotic. I think I love it. At least today I do.

Monday, November 05, 2007

*Jonathan's info updated on his caringbridge page. Follow link on this page to read more.

Peace. Peace that comes from only one place. Peace that surpasses all understanding. How I pray for this peace! This week I have been given a small taste of what this peace is. For me, this peace has come from obedience. God has spoken to my heart and then asked me to respond... until I obeyed there was turmoil. But how sweet the peace that fell upon my aching torn heart and soul once I obeyed!!!

Its amazing to me how fast things change... So many emotions, circumstances, and thoughts can fill each moment of time. This morning I am so grateful for a rock of truth to firmly plant my mind upon. I have found myself really struggling with truth and lies. I cannot keep my mind set upon the truth. But I know who is truth and today I run to his presence- this is the only choice that brings life. I cling to the promise found in Isaiah 26:3- You will keep him in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you. I am praying God will make my mind steadfastly set upon him- I know too well how easily I can wander!

This week was a major test of obedience. It was a struggle. So many conflicting thoughts and feelings. Too much that doesn't make sense. But there was that quiet voice pressing inside me that led the way. I felt an intense urgency that I needed to quit my job. This is a post all in itself. I will post more when I have it formulated in my mind. I want to share the beautiful things I have gleaned from that experience. I attempted to turn in my notice but my boss would not have they have left me on the payroll and I will work when I feel like it! I have peace about this option. I needed things to balance back out and not be interfering with my family.

This urgency made me feel as though something was terribly wrong or something was going to happen if I continued working like I was. I had no idea what it was... it was only one day later that God revealed to me what the problem was. And truly this would have been a major life crisis if I had not obeyed. I was so excited to see how God led me and enabled me to obey. And then to see why... what is so cool is how interrelated life is... so many times we try to seperate the physical life from our spritual life. But God is in it all!!! I never would have guessed that my quitting my job was so God could use it to bring me and my husband to a greater realization of our need for him and the direction we have been begging him for our family.

Of course, the moment we set sail on a straight course towards the goal the storm starts brewing. The attacks come flying in and we are threatened to turn back, give in, surrender to the enemy. That was my day yesterday. I could feel the war raging. I know it will get worse before it gets better...but I am determined to hide in the presence of God under his wings, recieving his strength and vision and let him fight for me until the storm blows past and I am firmly planted.