Thursday, April 3, 2014

Date night

I should have taken a picture...what was I thinking? 

Thomas and I actually went out on a date. The first one in at least over a year or two. And it was wonderful! 

A couple of weeks ago, Hayden was with Grandma Julie. I had slept all day and I woke up at about 6pm feeling better than normal. And I was craving Korean food. We decided to go and if I was too worn out from the drive when we got there, that we would order take out and come home. 

Luckily, there were very few people in the restaurant. We ordered. Yummy kimchi chegae (kimchi soup with tofu) for me with steamed white rice, a side of kim(seaweed) and kimchi. Thomas went with his favorite bulgogi marinated beef, lettuce wraps, steamed white rice and garlic. And of course a diet coke. 

While they cooked our dinner, Thomas and I sat and talked. We laughed. We reminisced. We spoke of good times. We laughed more. I looked over at this amazing husband of mine and smiled. I hit the jackpot with him. He loves me and cares for me and takes care of me like no one else could. And although I am so much work, he absolutely cherishes me. 

Feelings of love, gratitude, appreciation swept through my mind. I remembered all of our trips. Our quiet moments talking. Our dates. Cooking together. Family home evenings. Our prayers. The many many moments of laughter. The tears. The insurmountable joy. 

As I sat there smiling, Thomas asked what I was thinking about. I said us. This journey the two of us have walked has been incredible. We have had quite the adventures. We have been to the open wilderness via seaplane in the Alaskan frontier. We have experienced breathtaking scenes while in Costa Rica, Tahiti, Bahamas, Hawaii and more. We have been spiritually uplifted while standing where the prophet Joseph Smith died. We cherished Mickey's world on so many magical vacations. We loved thru the frozen tundra of Italy while our warm clothes were somewhere lost in the United States. We have had picnics and family gatherings. There have been movies and outings and dinners and dates. Family parties. Ward parties. Group outings. Family game nights and so much more. 

Thomas and I. We are the lucky ones. We have lived and loved life. We have been on a constant adventure. 

As I sat smiling at this man that has walked every step of the way with me, been my rock they each heartbreaking moment, held my hand to help endure the pain, celebrated each victory and have laughed with more than anyone. He truly is my eternal companion and love of my life. 

I am so grateful that my Father in Heaven saved him for me. He has brought more comfort, peace and joy to my world than I could have ever imagined. 

I love you, Thomas! Now and forever, throughout the eternities and beyond. My greatest have him next to me always. He truly has been my greatest blessing. 

Pain pain and more pain

This past month has been so rough. The pain is excruciating. The intensity constant. And the firing nerve endings, were on overdrive. 

I am not sure what started the rolling symptoms and increasing pain, but I know that each day has pushed me to the edge of tolerance. 

As the doctors mistakenly mixed up medications and then had to fix it with different doctors, the pharmacy and insurance, I had to go off meds that stabilize brain function and spontaneous jerking movements, nerve firing and myclonic seizures. 

72 hours off meds and my body still has not realigned almost a month later. I begged the doctors and pharmacy for a few extra meds to pull me thru the transition. Most didn't think it would be that big of a deal. Boy were they wrong. Even though back on the medication, everything in my brain is still sporadically firing for no given reason. The nerve endings remain on fire, randomly jerking, firing and causing indescribable pain throughout my body. 

The pain in the bottoms of my feet make each step difficult and oh so ever painful. Each step feels as is I am walking on dozens of knives. When sitting still, the throbbing in my feet is intense and constant. My legs have become so sensitive that if the dogs or Hayden rub up against them, it feels as if they will break. They randomly jerk uncontrollable and frequently, I cannot move them. My hands are only working occasionally and are constantly in indescribable pain. My arms jerk uncontrollably and often. The myclonic seizures have come back with a vengeance. 

It took a year and a half to get the symptoms this under control. Only three days to undo years worth of progress. 

The pain is constant and with it my sleep patterns are sporadic, only being able to stay in one position for a short while and then awakening with indescribable pain. The nights are long. The days are intense. I struggle for any type of relief. 

Relief only comes when I plead with my Savior, telling him I am at my limit and. I can endure no more. 

I beg for a few moments of relief. A break from the constant pain. And a reprieve from the hurt. 

Because my Savior loves me. Because he is one and loving and compassionate. Because he knows my limits and tolerance even more than I do. He allows me to walk to the edge and feel that one more shooting pain will dump me off the cliff. But it is in then that he pulls me back. He stands as my guard rail. He protects me. He loves me. And I have felt is undying compassion and love for me. 

No. This road is not easy. It is unbelievably painful and rough and long. It takes all I have each day to muster up the courage, strength, tolerance, endurance, persistence, self discipline and will to walk this path. It is harder and more intense than anything I could have imagined. 

I trust that my Savior will be at my side whenever I need him.  

I had endured more pain than I could have imagined. I knelt down and asked the Savior for relief. Help. I begged for him to take some of the pain or relieve some of the symptoms. Instead, I felt inspired to read my book. Immediately I read these words and received my answer. "I cannot be the God you want me to be. I did not come here to solve your physical problems. I came to solve your spiritual ones. I am about the work of my Father." It wasn't the answer I wanted. It wasn't what I expected. It wasn't anything besides heartbreaking. I cried. Tears streamed down my face. 

But as I trusted my Savior, prayed more, read more, studied more, he added the following verses from Isaiah. "Fear not: for I have redeemed the,  I have called the by name; thou art mine. When thou pas sets through the waters, I will be with thee; and... When thou walkway through the fire, thou shalt not be burned;... For I am The Lord thy God... Thy Saviour:...thou wast precious in my sight... And I have loved thee. (Isaiah 43:1-4)

I felt my Savior wrap his loving arms around me. He comforted me. He buoyed me up with his strength and love. And although the pain stayed. And my answer was not what I wanted nor expected, he heard me. He answered me. He reassured me. And promised to walk with me. That's all I can ask for. 

Yes. I will be thrilled when the pain eventually dies down. For now, I will hold tight to my Savior and trust that I will not drown. I will not burn. I will not die. And I will not be alone. And that makes the pain, as excruciating as it is....bearable. 

Oral surgery

Two weeks ago, Thomas called the dentist after I developed excruciating pain in my jaw. Horrible deep pain that pain meds wouldn't touch. He told the dentist I had another abcess. The dentist was very concerned as where it was hurting and infected as it leads to the heart and/or brain. Each little while he would call to come in earlier, as he rearranged his schedule and moved people to fit me in. I made my sweet husband come with me. I've walked into many dr appointments alone but this one scared me. 

The decision was made that with the infection, the tooth needed to come out. 

The dentist started to numb me and prep me for oral surgery. Just before he put the needle in my mouth, both he and Thomas, simultaneously stopped. The doctor paused and Thomas again starting asking questions. Both felt as though they should stop. I felt the spirit so strong as both of these priesthood holders utilized their priesthood and inspiration to change my treatment course.  

Instead, shots were give and I was sent home on medication for a very long and excruciatingly painful 5 days. During that time, I was on hard pain killers, just trying to endure. I do not think I slept the entire time. I was exhausted, sick and miserable. 

When I went back on the following Monday for the oral surgery, I braced. They could have pulled every tooth, I hurt so bad. 

As the dentist began fixing my teeth, he had the hardest time getting the tooth out. After finally maneuvering it, it came. As it did, he located another problem, more serious and threatening than the current issue. 

As he fixed my teeth, he began talking of a change of plans, and an immiediate transfer to another oral surgeon. He mumbled something about, locating an infection and lump or tumor and it needing to be removed immediately. He went to fix up my mouth and get me to another doctor. He left the room and within three minutes was back and again going into my mouth. 

He said that apparently he was supposed to fix the problem immediately. Now. Or I would have serious problems. He wasn't sure how to proceed. But the Savior was teaching him...instructing him. As he finished, choked up and tears in his eyes, he knew he had been guided and led. 

Luckily for me, I had received a priesthood blessing that morning. In the blessing, it stated, that the real issue would be discovered. The dentist would not know how to fix it but to rest assured, the Savior did, and he would teach the doctor, the problem would be resolved, and I would be okay. 

So as the doctor proceeded, unsure himself how to handle it, we all all experienced a miracle and the Lords hand. I felt the Savior's love wrap around me. No matter how much pain I was in, I was again reassured that the Savior is walking this road with me. 

Books and loaves and fishes

As I have begun to get ready for homeschooling, the cost of the books and supplies was weighing on me. I knew how much money textbooks and educational apps, supplies and teaching helps costs. I was concerned. I prayed that I would find good sales. 

Although I have seen the Savior continue to answer my prayers in many many ways, I still am in awe when it happens so clearly. 

I have been selling items for almost a year now to try and get money for our family. In all that time, I rarely see books for sell and have never seen a set of homeschooling books. So the day after my answer, when I opened Facebook to check my listings, and a homeschooling set of books was up for sale,I jumped on it. The lady immediately emailed me back and Thomas took me to her home to look at the books. She was retiring from teaching for 25 plus years. She taught 4th - 8th grades. Perfect. 

In our dear Savior's way, he always gives us more than we could ever need. He fills our needs, and wants and has so much extra that we could never need it all. 

That is true in love, in the fishes and bread, and all areas of our lives. 

I was given 6 tubs of books. My dear Savior not only met my needs, but gave me so much material that I have all I need if I were to homeschool for the next three years. 

I love my Savior. I love that he provides miracles and lessons today, just as he did when he walked the earth. He does the same things in similar ways. Sitting on the mount that day, thousands of years ago, people needed to be fed for their physical survival. He took what they had, multiplied it and the people ate. They didn't just get enough to just sustain them. No. That is not our Savior's way, the people ate and ate. There was plenty for all. Not only that, there were full baskets left over. Showing that they were all able to be completely filled both physically and spiritually. There was more than enough. 

Likewise, with homeschooling, The Lord asked me to homeschool and he provided for our needs. Not only did he give me what I would need but more than I could ever use. He truly blesses me. 

He calms my fears and lets me know that. I am enough because where I lack, he will make up the difference. And he will do a better job. So here we go. I know the Savior will give us what we need. He always has. He always will. That is his way. 

Homeschooling decision

Each year as I try to pray, fast, seek answers and try to make the best decisions for Hayden's schooling, I struggle with what is the very best thing for him. I pray to be inspired where to look for answers. I research and do my part looking at each school, each program and each option. I make a check list with pros and cons. I pray again to have the spirit with me as I look at the options. I present the best couple to Thomas and together we pray, asking for the Lord's guidance and inspiration. We make a decision and take it to our Savior. If yes, in faith we proceed. If no, we of back, reassess and proceed with the process. 

As things have been getting hairy for Hayden at school this year with some teachers and students and situations, I again started this process. With junior high around the corner, the options were less and unfamiliarity increased. I started by praying about which schools to even invistigate, since I could not walk into the schools. One by one, as I located and briefly researched each school, I felt no after no after no. Uneasy about each option I researched and studied. Quickly after beginning looking at each one, red flags appeared and concerns arose that I was not willing to bend on. 

One by one my options for Hayden depleted. Soon, it seemed as if all options were gone. I felt confused and very unsure about my answers and decisions. I felt like. I did when I was praying about school and where I should go, when my options were BYU, Arizona, get married, work... I received no to all options. Until I finally told my Savior if he would show me the way, I would walk wherever he asked me to. The answer immediately came to my mind...I need you to serve a mission and love and find my other children. 

Again, I found myself in a similar situation. All viable options that I saw, were "no's". Again, on bended knee, I plead with my dear Savior for answers. I again voiced the words, "Savior, I have received a no to all options I could find. I've researched and studied the options. I have prayed about each one. I have received a no to each option. Where does that leave me? Hayden? He needs to go somewhere. Savior, if you will tell me what to do, where to go, we will follow you wherever you ask." 

Immediately, the feeling of homeschooling came to my heart and mind. Homeschooling?  Really? How? Is it possible in my situation? His? How will I ever be able to do enough? Will I survive this? Questions came to my mind. So many. Questioning my ability to be able to teach Hayden what he needed to learn. And even more so, questions about my health, heart conditions, afternoon coma episodes, my exhaustion and seizures swarmed my mind. How could I possibly physically do all that would be required. 

But, as I cleared my mind. I did what I have so often done throughout my life. I trusted my Savior. I humbled my self. My prayer changed. Again. I asked for clarification. Again, the spirit embraced my heart and soul. Comfort and peace came and replaced the doubt and fear and confusion. I recognized immediately my Savior's will. My words changed. I promised to continue to walk my life on the Savior's path. To do things His way, not mine. To make my will match His. Not the other way around. 

Peace filled my heart. I felt my Savior's love for me and Hayden. 

The thought again came across my mind. All I have to do is give my all. No more. No less. All is required is that I do my best and give my all. Our dear Savior will make up for where I lack.  

If he is asking me to homeschool Hayden, he will fill in and make up where I lack. My all is enough. 

The road now begins... The process of meeting with Special Education teachers, Speech therapists, Ocupational Therapists, Principal, Teachers and more to reassess his  IEP. Do his testing. And get all things in order has begun. 

My goal is to have him home with me by Easter. 

I am working on it. But, I trust if I do what the Savior asks, he will help me and guide me. He will help me along the path and point me where I need to go. 

So another new adventure gets ready to begin. Once again, I am learning to put my trust in the Savior in another aspect of my life. Once again, I anticipate seeing the hand of our dear Savior in the details in our lives. In our homeschooling. And in giving me what I need in order to take care of my son and my health. Let the new adventure begin.....

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

I love to see the temple

  1. I love to see the temple.
    I'm going there someday
    To feel the Holy Spirit,
    To listen and to pray.
    For the temple is a house of God,
    A place of love and beauty.
    I'll prepare myself while I am young;
    This is my sacred duty.

    1. I love to see the temple.
      I'll go inside someday.
      I'll cov'nant with my Father;
      I'll promise to obey.
      For the temple is a holy place
      Where we are sealed together.
      As a child of God, I've learned this truth:
      A fam'ly is forever.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Maya and the bee

My little Maya Belle. She is a character and a half. Wow O Wowzeers is she crazy and full of it. 

She is a collector. She collects and finds everything. And everything she finds gets chewed. Everything. She always brings me "presents". 

She pulls and gathers weeds. Brings me rocks. Bugs. Crayons. Legos. Trash. Anything and everything she can find. 

A week ago, she was up in the morning, running, jumping, terrorizing the house and Max. 

About 10 am, she calmed a took a nap. When she awoke, something wasn't right. I looked at her and next to her was a partial bee. Great. I called the vet. They told me to watch for blood, vomiting and diarrhea. He vomited. I called the vet. They said just hold her and wait. I did. But panicked and called Thomas. He said if anything else happens take her in. 

Hayden followed her to the bathroom outside. All of a sudden, I hear Hayden screaming, Mom!!! Bloody diarrhea. Then she started shaking all over. Hard. Almost convulsions. 

The vet said to being her in in about an hour and we would be worked in. 

Hmmm. I cannot drive. I can't be out in public. Luckily Julie was over. Thomas had to leave work an hour early to meet us at the vet. 

They were sure it was. Parvo and we were devastated at the possibility of losing her and  Max. 

I was so scared. So heartbroken. Nurses began taking care of her and running tests. Thank heavens for the well puppy plan with all included visits. One by one tests came back. Parvovirus negative. And so on. After a shot of Benadryl to relieve the allergic reaction to the bee and  shot to stop her stomach convulsions, 3 hours and almost $100 later, Thomas and sick little Maya were on their way home. 

She shook. She cuddled. She didn't move at all. 

Max stayed up with her. He rested his head by her. He even let. Maya lie her head in him. So sweet. So tender. The love between them is amazing. 

I realized in those moments how attached I have gotten to her. How much. I love her. How much I needed these little pups in my life. 

They bring joy to a whole new level. We love them. The next day, Maya was back up to her shenanigans. Hyper. Running. Prancing. And full of it. We all smiled. We love our little fur ball, or bundle of joy and the love they have brought to our hearts.