Saturday, May 5, 2012

Blessings and Trials

I know that I am sometimes at a loss of where to go when I am feeling as though I am trampled by trials and the blessings seem to fade around me.  Today I was reading my devotional, and I read this quote:

"In situations of suffering, it is better to focus on the future (what purpose God has) rather than the past (what the cause of suffering is)." 

Am I really suffering?  Well, in a sense, I feel as I am.  Physically.  There is so much going on, beyond my hips and it's just piling up everyday it seems.  HOWEVER, this morning, I had some time by myself, and decided to spend some time in prayer and in the Word.  I was led to many verses that just gave me so much comfort.  They reminded me that God has a reason for everything.  He had every number of hairs counted on my head, therefore knew/knows everything I am going to go through...Good and bad.  My part is to lean on Him through it! 

While I was praying, He made it apparent how many blessings have come from the trials that I have been facing.  Not just now, but in the past as well.  There are blessings all around me.  Relationships, time, achievements, awakenings, weight loss...Too much to even write down.  He also nudged my heart and let me know to let it all go before it gets this bad!  As you have read in past blogs, I have had this issue for a long time.  It is something I will have to continue to work on!  He's worth it!

This is a link to the song Blessings by Laura Story.  It touches base on what this is all about.  I hope you'll listen.  <3

Anyway, I thought I would share some of the verses that touched my heart and opened my eyes to the One I need to give thanks to...for the blessings and the trials. 

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.

Ecclesiastes 7:14
When times are good, be happy; but when times are bad, consider: God has made the one as well as the other.
Philippians 4:4-7
Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Colossians 3:2
Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.

Job 2:10
He replied, "You are talking like a foolish woman. Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?"
2 Chronicles 15:4
But in their distress they turned to the LORD, the God of Israel, and sought him, and he was found by them.

Psalm 56:3
When I am afraid, I will trust in you.

Psalm 57:1
Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me, for in you my soul takes refuge. I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed.
Psalm 23:4
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

Matthew 19:26
Jesus looked at them and said, "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible."
Isaiah 43:2
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.
2 chronicles 20:12
“…We do not know what to do, but our eyes are upon you."
Joshua 1:9
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go."

Philippians 4:13
I can do everything through him who gives me strength.

Isaiah 58:9
Then you will call, and the LORD will answer; you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I.

Proverbs 3:5
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;

Jeremiah 29:11
For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

John 16:33
"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."

1 Peter 5:7
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

Isaiah 40:31
but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

Matthew 8:26
He replied, "You of little faith, why are you so afraid?" Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.

Jeremiah 31:16
This is what the LORD says: "Restrain your voice from weeping and your eyes from tears, for your work will be rewarded," declares the LORD.

James 1:2-3
Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.
Romans 8:28
And we know that in ALL THINGS God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose

Isaiah 33:2
O LORD, be gracious to us; we long for you. Be our strength every morning, our salvation in time of distress.                 

I know that was a lot!  But believe it or not, I left over half of them out!  I hope that you have a blessed weekend and that you are able to see that somethimes Good comes through the bad...Regardless, God is with us through all of it!

Monday, April 30, 2012

Catching Up

It has been a while...sorry to my regular readers!  A lot has been going on, so I will try to catch up, without taking up too much of your time!

Family:  Everything is going pretty well with the family.  I really cannot complain!  Cheyton started baseball and is playing for the Cardinals.  He will be pitcher at his game tonight, but also plays first and third bases!  He has adjusted well to homeschooling and looks forward to starting at the school for homeschoolers in the fall!  Ethan is excelling in Academics.  We just went to his second honor roll assembly of the year!  He has started taking violin lessons with our dear friend, Amanda, and is a natural musician!  His first recital is May 15th!  We are quite excited to see him grow and show who he is and what he loves!  David is doing well!  He has such a heart and loves God!  He is improving in reading and excels in Math!  He (along with his brothers) participated in the Pinewood Derby for Royal Rangers.  He got a 1st place metal for show, and he proudly wears that just about anywhere we will let him!  He will be starting drum lessons soon!!!  EXCITING!  Sam is doing well.  Work is busy, home is busy...Not too much to report!  He has been such a blessing to me though!!!!  As for me, I am healing, slowly, but surely.  I got my hip surgery April 4th.  The surgery went well, but I have had a couple of setbacks since, so the recovery process is a little slower this time around.  I'm pushing through, with my family and friends by my side!  All the animals are doing well too!  Including our dog Cali!  She had been walking really well, as the weather warms up!  Looking forward to the sunny days, so she can go play fetch in the bay!

Relay For Life:  As I told you all before, Sam and I are participating in our local Relay for Life, to raise funds for cancer research.  Thanks to friends, family, collecting change and yard sales, Sam and I have together already raised ALMOST $1450!  This is a great amount for now, I am just praying that I am able to do more before June 1st! 

School:  I FINALLY got my diploma!  I graduated from a medical administrative assistant course in December and got my diploma in March!  I am beyond thrilled!  I am now studying for the national exam, in hopes of working in the fall.  We shall see what God has in mind! 

Like I said, there has been a lot going on...And this isn't even all of it.  There are some people in my life going through issues, medical and otherwise, that can use some thoughts and prayers.  For healing, guidance, peace, direction, comfort...If you need anything, be sure to let me know!!!!  I am here ALWAYS! 

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Relay For Life Is Coming Up!!!

Hi everyone! 

My husband, Sam, and I, along with our team (FRC NW 1) are walking with the Relay For Life!  For those of you who haven't heard of it before, it is a walk for the cure for cancer!  We are walking for MANY people this year!  Our families have been affected by cancer on a level that is unbelievable. 

We are fundraising from now, all the way up until June first and asking anyone and everyone to get involve, IF and when you can!  Here are the ways you {and your friends ;) } can help out...

1. If you are local, donate items to our series of yard sales we will be having.  ALL profits will be going to Relay For Life.  We will actually advertise that we will have the site open on our laptop, and they can use a credit/debit card to donate, rather than using cash!!  :)  If you don't have anything to donate, come check us out!

2.  We have a coin jar...Commit to collecting your coins for a certain period of time.  It can be a couple of days, a week, a month, 2 months...Whatever you can!!  You can even get your kids involved! 

3.  You can donate a luminaria .  Simple white luminaria bags are transformed and illuminated after dark at every local Relay For Life event. Each one is personalized with the name, photo, message or drawing in memory or honor of a friend or loved one who has been affected by cancer.  Each luminaria candle represents a person.  They are our mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, friends, coworkers and so much more.  As the sun sets at a Relay For Life event, luminaria lining the track illuminate the night and a hush falls over the event that had been filled with the sounds of celebration. Relay For Life participants, survivors and caregivers then gather together for the Luminaria Ceremony to remember loved ones lost to cancer and to honor those who have battled the disease.
As participants walk the track lined with luminara bags in reflection, a caregiver who has lost a loved one may find comfort from a fellow caregiver who has faced a similar loss. Meanwhile, a survivor gains hope and strength from others who have followed the same journey and survived. All resolve to keep fighting to save more lives so no more luminaria bear the names of those lost to the disease.  See a video here...

4.  Take a look at my page, and consider making a donation!  The society has suggested amounts, HOWEVER, there is a box, that you can put whatever you can afford, and I am being very heartfelt and honest when I say, every little bit helps and is appreciated so much!

Thank you for taking the time to read this.  I hope you have an awesome day and if you or your family has been affected by cancer, I am sending Hugs, prayers and blessings your way!  <3 

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Our New Journey...Has Just begun!

I am now homeschooling Cheyton, my oldest son.  I am enjoying it so far, and look forward to continuing on for the next few least!! For the first 90 days, we have to homeschool on our own at home.  It is somewhat like a probation period, to make sure that he can handle mom being the teacher and vise versa.  In our case, since the 90 days will put us so close to the end of the school year, we will be working at home the rest of the school year.

In September, he gets to go to a school, for homeschoolers, twice a week and be a home three days a week.  I love the idea.  He still gets socialization and friends, he has administration to hold him accountable, teachers that are credentialed...I feel capable and willing to teach him, however I am blessed that they have this program available.  We are involved in choosing his classes, working with him at home and the school has less than 300 students total. 

He will still have an opportunity to play sports in both middle school and high school.  They have them offered at the school for middle, and he can play for the public high school.  He's VERY excited about this!  :)  I  know that there are challenges in everything, and we are sure to have our adjustments here and there.  If Cheyton stays on track, after 10th grade, he may have an opportunity to start at the community college and when he graduates high school, he ill also graduate with an associates degree. 

Friday, January 27, 2012

Healing...We Need It!

I watched the video above this morning and it was really what I needed to hear.  Obviously you all know about my health issues, and the depression...But now we are dealing with bullying issues with my son Cheyton.  We do not have the school backing us up at this point, and it has been happening daily since October.  It is taking a toll on him and on all of us!  Please keep Cheyton, us, the administration and even the bullies in your prayers. 

~That Cheyton will feel safe and be happy for the weekend because he can sleep in, and not that it will be a couple days of not getting bullied...That's what he told Sam in a conversation last night :(
~For Ethan and David too, as they hear tidbits here and there, and I am sure they see him down.  Maybe pray that they can help encourage him   <3
~That We will know the next step to take, and not move based on emotions...
~That the administration will realize the mistakes that have been made, and take the initiative to make things right so that other kids will not have to go through this...Or at least will not have to endure it for as long as Cheyton has!
~And pray that the bullies have a change happen in their hearts.  I know that often there is something happening within them, their home or something, that makes them act the way they do.  I AM NOT BY ANY MEANS EXCUSING THEM...Simply knowing that I have to pray for them.

I am sorry that I cannot give more detail at this time, but I feel as though it's for the best.  But please be praying.   Thanks everyone!  I will update soon!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Decisions Decisions...

I saw Dr. Smith, my surgeon on Friday.  She was impressed with my improvement, especially with my gait.  She told me to keep up with the exercises, stretches and walking, so we can strengthen up the outer muscle of the hip as much as possible before the next surgery.

We discussed next surgery (left hip replacement), in particular, the timeline.  First she said October, but she said that due to my level of pain, that she'd give me a choice of April or October.  She asked me to please discuss it with Sam, and see what is best for all of us, and to let her know.  Sam and I discussed it and we decided that I will be going in, in April. 

It seems like so soon, but she said she is OK with either. I am looking forward to recovering in the somewhat warmer months.   Winter is harsh on my bones as it is, recovering from surgery and my aches and pains added to that, was not fun.  Another plus, will be that the boys will get to go through the surgery with the same teachers that have already experienced my other one with, and I think that will be very helpful for them.  To me earlier is better than later...I am ready to get the surgery done and over with and be on the road to recovery. 

If you can all be in prayer with me, as the process now begins with the insurance company and prepping emotionally for the surgery, that would be great.  I am not nearly as anxious this time around, since I know what to expect.  However, the boys do still get antsy and as time gets closer it only gets worse.  I try to comfort them, and I hope they will remember how well it went last time...But I don't know what goes on in their little heads and hearts.  So indeed my friends, prayers and encouragement for Sam, the boys and I, and of course the doctors too! 

Thanks  ~:o)~

Friday, January 13, 2012

Yesterdays Issues

Me: "I use to throw up."
Doc:  "Bulimia? How long ago?"
Me:  "Off and on since I was 11."
Doc:  "Now?"
Me:  "Oh, no, not now. It's been about 6 years."
Doc:  "A lot of your issues with weight and self confidence and definitely your dental issues all make a little more sense."
Me:  It's a constant battle that I wish I could say I never think about.
Doc:  It's like any other addiction. You were addicted to a behavior and eventually quit doing it. Did you ever get treatment for it. Ever talk to anyone about it?
Me: No. Maybe it's time.
Doc:  Maybe.

This was a conversation my doctor and I had just the other day. It may be shock to some of you, I know it was for my mom. I am not proud of my self image or the choices that I made.

My reason for writing is just to remind you all that things from your past do affect you NOW. There are so many healthy ways to take care of your body, to lose weight and to feel beautiful. Also, most importantly, look at yourself as God sees you. He has made you in His image. There's no such thing as human perfection, so there's no sense in striving for it, especially in unhealthy ways.

Bulimia is a real problem. A disease. It can happen to girls and boys, men and women. When I first started, I was a "tiny" 6th grader who had tinier friends. Now looking back, I know it's a lame excuse. As an older teen, I did it for weight maintainance. And as am adult, looking at my life, I have no excuse. I have a husband who lives me and truly loves and accepts me for who I am.  I guess I just find it so hard to look in the mirror and see beyond the physical. 

This is something I am going to work in with my therapist, and hopefully it won't be an issue ever again. I want to be an example to my nieces and especially to my sons, but I can't be that until I get everything right with me.

For those who may speculate, this had nothing to do with my weight loss this past year. It has been 6 years since I have purged and I am in a coherent place now...just need to get a little bit further. 

Enough for now. Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Dentist...Criiiiinge no more!

Yesterday I faced my fear and went to the dentist for a root canal. After being afraid for the past week and making myself sick all morning, it really wasn't that bad. I had taken some medication the night before and day of to relax me, and I only needed 1 shot of Novocaine!  That is very impressive for me!  Especially because there was an infection in the tooth, which usually makes it difficult to numb it up.  The dentist was very nice and aware that I was nervous and when I was done, gave me a pat on the back. 

Unfortunately, he then said that I have to come back and get another root canal on a molar.  There is a crack in the filling and the decay is above that.  And...more infection.  So I go in on Thursday next week to get it done and I'm not as nervous this time.  At least not as much.  I have to get this done before my hip replacement, and the infection is almost all the way to the sinus cavity, so it NEEDS to be done! 


Monday, January 9, 2012

Thoughts of Moving

When you are in the military, especially right now, you always have to have a back-up plan.  Be prepared just in case this is your last term.  Sam will be putting in for PTS, Preform To Serve, in September, and that will determine if we will be staying in the Navy, or if we will be civilians in 2 years.  I told my mom last night that 2 years was a long time, but honestly, it's really not. 

Last night Sam and I were watching the show House Hunters.  They were in a city in the mid-west and the scenery, houses, amount of land for your money, was amazing.  So, we started looking at houses in Tennessee.  We had already been contemplating Oklahoma before, so it's not much further.  There were many houses that appealed to us that are well within our budget.  I am going to do some more research into the schools, and work, and of pray about it.  God has a plan for us!  Is this it?  I'm not sure, we will see!

Now of course, all of this is just when we get out.  It can be 2 years from now, it can be 6 years from now!  Like I said we just want to have something planned out. 

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Plans Laying Out...

So I went to the doctor today and we talked about a lot of things.  Some people may think that talking about medical stuff on a blog, is too much, but, I think it's important.  We switched a couple meds, lowered doses on another and are talking about going back on Zoloft for a bit. 

The highlighted masses near the
jaw, are the extra parotid glands.
 ENT- (for the extra parotid glands)
For those of you who don't know, I have an extra set of parotid glands.  I see an ENT for "treatment," or as it usually stands.  Today I got a letter saying that the ENT specialist I was seeing in Seattle is retiring and to doctors are taking his place.  If Tricare will cover these docs, I may see if they will take a look at my scansand see how they are growing.  I would like to see if they can do or have ever done anything for something like this.   I feel like maybe it is an opportunity for a second opinion, and will be starting the phone calls soon.

My hip-after replacement

Orthopaedics- (for the hips and spine)
Had surgery #1, and am healing well.  Hip surgery 2 will be in February/March time frame.  After physical therapy is done for that, the doctor is going to address the comprssed discs in my lumbar spine.  They are starting to go all the way up to my neck and all the way down to my tailbone, so we need to get it under control. 

Rheumatology-(for fibromyalgia)
This is my Christian doctor.  I am going to talk to him about new options for treatment of fibromyalgia.  Not necessarily medication, but something.  ANYTHING!  He also counsels me a lot and prays with me, so our appointments are very imprtant, meaningful and effective to some extent!  

Mental Health-(for depression and chronic pain therapy)
I see both a social worker and a psychiatrist for therapy.  My social worker is for talk therapy and I am currently doing a pain management workbook with her.  She is really nice and has a way of getting things out of me!  Haha!  I guess that's the point!  My psychiatrist is for talking as well, but he deals more with prescribing and regulating medications and referring me out to other specialists if need be.  He,also, is great and has been an asset to my team of doctors.