December 31, 2014

What A Year. Good-Bye 2014!!

It has been such a crazy year, I have not been able to spend any time updating this blog. My family has been through a lot of different things this year, & we were able to make it through all of it with God's strength.

Some of the changes:

  • Daron moved back to Battle Creek to the VA facility.
    • This change effects everyone in the family. The VA facility is now 1 hour away & that makes it difficult for Taylor & I to visit on a regular basis. However, Daron has more options of activities to do & he was given a job in the laundry room. Daron's health is still slowly declining. His mental capacities are a day by day sort of thing. It really depends on the day as to how clear of mind he is. 
  • Taylor started 5th grade.
    • He is at the same school as last year & he is thriving. I am so glad I made this move last school year. He is treated like a 5th grade boy & he enjoys that. He is part of an after school program this year & he has his moments with it, but it is a good fit for him.
  • I started a new job at the start of the school year......& then switched jobs in November. 
    • I started the year working at our Middle School & I loved the atmosphere there. Then the elementary school kitchen that I worked at last school year (Taylor's school) became available, so I applied for that position. I got that job & changed positions at the beginning of November. I love going to work every day!! I consider all 300+ students at the school "my kids" (most of them even call me mom when they see me). I also started serving supper to the after school program at the elementary school as well. I couldn't be happier with my job & taking care of all of the amazing kids there.  
All of these changes have been fun, challenging, trying, exciting & so much more. Life in our house is never dull, that's for sure. I wish I could say that all of these challenges have pulled me closer to God, & in some ways they have. But, going into 2015, my "resolution" is to draw closer to God for the strength & grace I need to get through everything that lies ahead. God has brought me this far & I know that He is the only one who can get me through the new year. 

Please continue to pray for our family as we enter this new year. We truly appreciate all of our friends & family. We can feel the prayers & support that you send out way every day. Thank You!!

May God bless each of you with a wonderful & safe New Year.


September 6, 2014

What is going on?

Today is one of those days when I feel like I am being punished for something. While talking with Daron today the journey we are on took another familiar, yet out of control, turn. After 3 years, you would think that I would be numb to the same blame, the same remarks, the same demands. I'm not. They still hurt. They still make me wonder what I did wrong. They still make me doubt myself as a wife, mom & person.

Daron once again asked to come home. The hardest part of the conversation was being told that it is my fault he is in the nursing home & that the nurses won't let him do anything for himself. The last part shocked me the most - he's never told me that before. Of everything we talked about during our conversation, that hurt the most. I was offended when he told me that the money in our account is his money, but it didn't sting or hurt.

Having him ask to come home (or demand at times) during every phone call is difficult enough. Having him tell me that I am the reason he is not allowed to do things for himself -- I can't even begin to put how hurt I am into words. After 3 years, he still believes that I abandoned him & that I don't care about him. When I try to explain that he made the choice to go to the nursing home, he doesn't believe it. I try to explain that the nurses & doctors won't let him do certain things in order to keep him safe.....but he still blames me for those orders.

Before you say it, I have put myself in his shoes. I know that he is struggling with being away from his family. I know that this is tough on him as well. However, we all make choices in life & those choices come with results (good or bad). Those results can be long-term & that is what he did. He made the choice to go into a nursing home for care. He was told that it was a permanent choice & he said he understood. He made the choice & now he has to face the results of that choice.

I sit here with tears of hurt streaming down my face. I am at a loss because I am so confused. I have been married to this man for almost 12 years & for the first time I am wondering if I made the right decision when I said I Do. I have never contemplated my marriage. I have never wondered if I made a mistake. I have always looked at my marriage as a gift from God & that through the difficult times God is teaching me something. But now....I don't know if that is true. I can't see God's hand in any of this. I know that I am giving the devil a toehold with this doubt, but how am I supposed to react to this? How am I supposed to move forward after being told that his decision was actually my choice because I wanted out?

Why does this have to hurt so bad?
Why can't I just move on from this one like I have all the times before?
Why am I praying that my husband forgets who I am?
Why am I wishing I could turn back time & make a different choice?
What is going on in my life right now?
Am I being punished for something?
Did I upset God so much that this is the punishment I have to endure?
How long am I to go through this before I see the reward?
How is this going to help me show His glory to other people?
Does God really think I am strong enough to go through this pain?

Romans 8:28 says "And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose." I am holding on to that promise, but I will be honest......my hand is slipping & I'm not sure how much longer I can hold on.

September 2, 2014

New School Year

Today my baby started 5th grade. He was dreading it for the last few days (this morning included), but when I dropped him off he said "see ya later Mom" & went off to talk to a group of his friends.


I cannot believe that he is in 5th grade already. It just doesn't seem possible. I still feel like I just brought him home from the hospital yesterday. I am just thankful that he is growing up into a "normal" pre-teen young man. Yes, we have our days....but who doesn't. Besides, given everything we have been through & are still going through, I am glad that he has such a sweet spirit. 

Today was also starts a new work year for me. I am no longer a dishwasher at the High School. I am now part of a three lady team at the Middle School & today was my first day. It went great! The 6th graders are kids that I was the lunch lady for last year, so it was nice to see their smiling faces again. Plus, it gave them a smiling face that they recognized. I am so thankful for the job that God has provided for me & I feel so privileged to be serving the kids each day. I started working for the school 2 years ago & I have not regretted a single day there. No matter how crazy & hectic the days are, I love going to work each day. In 2 weeks, I will be starting the second phase of my new job - working food service for an after school program at Taylor's school. I can't wait for that one to start.

Please be in prayer for Taylor this school year. He will have harder homework & more of it each day. 

Please pray that we will find a schedule that is perfect for us. With a new school year starting that also means a new AWANA year. That means that Wednesday's will be full & Taylor will have to squeeze homework in & have a later bedtime.

Please pray for me while I adjust to this new position as well as the added position in 2 weeks. While I am looking forward to it, I know it will mean longer days & shorter evenings. I also know that when AWANA starts up it will mean frantic Wednesdays. But I know that God can & will give me the strength I need to get through each day. I also know that I will be able to find the perfect way to fit everything in that needs to be done.

August 21, 2014

I Don't Know If I Can Do This Again

Life has been a little peaceful lately. Granted, Daron & I had our moments over the months. Things between us are still tough. I mean, there is always the thought in my mind that Daron will talk about wanting a divorce again or start the "Please let me come home" talk again.

Well, it happened & I was not prepared for it. Daron called & started talking about coming home or moving back to Lowell. I was caught so off guard by that one this time. When Daron moved back to Battle Creek last year, I took the time to fully explain the decision to him in a way that I thought he understood. The VA is not going to be willing to move him back & forth every year because he is unhappy where he's at. That was why he went from Lowell to Battle Creek - he was unhappy at Lowell. He wanted more activities, more freedom, more to do & he has that at Battle Creek. Now he wants to move back to Lowell because Taylor & I aren't able to visit as often as he would like us to visit.

Emotionally, I am a wreck right now. I know that I have been fighting depression for years & that doesn't make this any easier. I just wanted to sit in my bed, eat chocolate & cry on Tuesday night. But I did not give in to those thoughts. I fought through & spent time with Taylor since he always makes me laugh.  

I will overcome the emotions that I am feeling right now. I will come through this stronger. I know that God will give me the strength that I need to get through this. He has so many times over the years. I know that God is using this in my life to bring glory to Himself......but that is hard to keep in mind while I am going through all of this. 

Please continue to pray for my family as we go through this. \
Please pray for Taylor & I as we enter a new school/work year. 
Please pray that God will give Daron clarity of mind through this time.

June 16, 2014

How do I stop the cravings?

We've all had cravings for many different things. Most of the time when you hear the word "craving" you might think of food. But my pastor at church showed a whole new side to the word "craving" yesterday. In 1 Corinthians 10:1-13 Paul talks to the church in Corinth about "craving evil things" & what those cravings can lead to: Idolatry, Immorality, Testing God & Grumbling. Now, I have read through this passage a lot of times & never got the full effect of it....until yesterday.

As my pastor was preaching, I was really led to think about how I am "craving evil things" in my own life. God brought to light the fact that I have been craving a different husband, a better family atmosphere, a different situation then the one that I'm in, a different job. That realization hit my like a ton of bricks to the point that I was physically frozen in my spot & shaking at the end of the service. I couldn't even bring myself to sing the last song. My heart was telling me to go up to the front & ask for someone to pray with me, but I couldn't get my legs to move. I was frozen with shame. I didn't want people in my church to know that I have been craving those things. I couldn't even focus for the rest of the morning because I knew that my heart wasn't fully right with God. It still isn't.

While I have made some growth in my spiritual life that is visible on the outside, there is still a lot of work for me to do. When I was hit with the realization that I am craving a different husband, a better family atmosphere & a different situation.....I wanted to run out of the church building. I wanted to run away because the things that my pastor said the cravings led to are evident in my daily life. I have a picture of what my "ideal" husband looks like, acts like & how he treats me, & I compare that to how Daron has treated me. I also have the "ideal" picture of a better family atmosphere & I measure my relationship with Taylor to that. I also have an "ideal" situation that I would love to be in & then I get depressed when I realize that I'm not really in that situation.

See, I hold those "ideals" higher then anything else right now (Idolatry). I am always asking God why He chose this path for me & why can't He make life easier (Testing God). Then when I realize that nothing will change because God has me in this for a reason & a purpose, I begin to complain about everything that I think is wrong (Grumbling). All of those things lead me away from God instead of drawing me closer to Him. I am just hurting myself with those things & the horrible cycle that I have created. I need to daily put those thoughts out of my mind & fill it with Scriptures instead.

Thankfully, in verse 13 Paul reminds me that God Is Faithful! God knows my limits & He will always provide me with an escape route when those "cravings" come on. Looking back, I can see that escape route & I can see how many times I avoided it. I love music & God has been giving me hymns & worship songs on a daily basis. When I think back, I realize that every time I have had a "craving" God has tried to draw my attention away from it with a song. But in my stubbornness I have pushed that song away & clung to the "craving" instead. Now that I have realized that, I will cling to the words of the song or the Scripture that God gives me.

I don't want to crave evil things anymore - just like I don't want to crave ice cream, pop, chips, any other junk food anymore. I want to fully feast on the wonderful spiritual food that God provides me in His Word & crave that instead. I need to daily fight the evil cravings & reach for the Word instead. While it is difficult sometimes, I know that as I walk with my Savior the evil cravings will dim away. I am thankful for the Blessed Redeemer that I have leading the way.

March 12, 2014

How Has Cancer Touched Your Life?

The school I work for has a Relay for Life this year. We are doing a lot of different things in order to raise awareness & spread the word about the American Cancer Society. This video was put together by some of our High School students. It features staff & students whose lives have been touched by cancer. I highly recommend watching it. Click Here to view the video.

Cancer touched my life without me even knowing it. My paternal grandfather was diagnosed with colon cancer....twice. When I was pregnant with my son I contacted my grandfather in order to get to know him. Shortly after we got in touch he went into the hospital. He found out he had lung cancer & passed away a few days later. Now that I know about his colon cancer, I have already had my colon checked & I am getting ready for another test.

Cancer hits people when they least expect it & it doesn't care who it hits. There are so many different types of cancer & they all affect people differently. There is a cure out there & we all can help find it. Please visit the Relay For Life Website or the American Cancer Society Website to learn more about how you can help find a cure.

March 8, 2014

I Never Thought It Would Be This Hard

When I met Daron & found out he had MS, I honestly didn't think twice about it. He had a job as a mechanic & was handling his MS very well. When we started to seriously talk about getting married & having a family I still didn't give it a second thought. His MS didn't control him or define who he was as a person. We lived a happy life (with it's normal ups & downs along the way of course).

When he had his flare in 2009 that was when I started to see a difference in how he acted in regards to his MS. I hate to say it this way, but that is when his MS started to take control. That was when the Daron that I married "left" the picture & the MS Daron took over. It was hard to watch. I pushed him as much as I could & when he told me to stop pushing I would back off. I never fully stopped encouraging him to fight his disease. I didn't want the MS to win & destroy my family. But I feel as though it did.

Nowadays it is hard to talk to Daron on the phone or see him in person. The man that I fell in love with is no longer in the foreground. Now I have a husband who hasn't fully accepted this path that God has put us on. I'll be honest, there are days when I don't accept it either. When I am having a rough day & I just want some privacy.....or when the roof starts leaking & I can't figure out how to fix it......or when Taylor is misbehaving & needs his father to set him start......those are the times when I start to yell & scream at God. Those are the rough days & that's when I start to hate the MS for taking my husband from me.

It's really hard to have a "normal" conversation with Daron anymore. A lot of the time it revolves around him wanting to come home or blaming me for putting him in the nursing home. Those conversations are horrible. I feel bad for Daron & I know that he wants to be at home with his family. It is just so hard to listen to him talk that way when I pray all the time that he will accept this path & move forward. When people say "being a caregiver is not for the weak" they were not kidding. I would not wish this on my worst enemy!!

I just keep praying that God will give Daron the peace of mind that he needs. I also pray that God will work His perfect will in Daron's life. I know & trust that God will perform a miracle in Daron's life when His time is perfect. I also know that the miracle may not be the one that I am praying for. God will heal Daron - but it may not be on this side of Heaven & that is ok. I will just keep trusting in God's perfect plan for my husband, for my son, for our family & for myself. God will never steer me wrong if I just keep following His path & His plan!

March 7, 2014

Amazing Story of Survival

A week or so ago I was contacted by one of my readers. She told me part of her story of surviving Mesothelioma. I read her story & learned more about Lung Leavin' Day. WOW! What an amazing & inspiring story. I am looking forward to celebrating Lung Leavin' Day myself. You don't have to be a lung cancer survivor to celebrate Lung Leavin' Day. The main point is to say goodbye to your fears.
I think it would be good for all of us to take time to write down our biggest fears & then watch them get destroyed in a fire. Saying goodye to fear is one of the biggest things we can do for ourselves & it is truly an amazing way to get rid of extra stress in our lives. I encourage each of you to visit her Lung Leavin' Day website to learn more about this day.
You can get more information by visiting:
www.mesothelioma.com/heather/lungleavinday

February 25, 2014

It's been a long, difficult few months

I know that it has been awhile since I last posted a blog update. But there are some things going on that have made it tough to be completely open & honest these past few months. God has really been working in my life.....which means that Satan has been trying to pull me down every chance he can get. Let me try & explain.

On December 23, 2013 Daron told me that he wanted a divorce. He wanted this because he thought it would be the best way to protect Taylor & I. Needless to say, this hit me like a ton of bricks & over time I became extremely angry with him to the point of almost filing for divorce myself. I knew that I needed to get some things figured out in my heart after realizing just how angry I was. Honestly, I was angry to the point that I requested no contact between Daron & I in any way (this included phone calls, texts & visits). The anger was also seeping into my parenting, my friendships, my work & every other aspect of my life.

Well the Lord spent a lot of time grabbing a hold of me & showing me what I needed to change. My pastor has been preaching some amazing sermons that have basically hit me between the eyes every Sunday morning. I knew that God must really want me to pay attention & make changes in my life.

Thankfully He showed me the path I needed to take & after a long cry fest I repented for sinning with my anger, doubting Him & failing to have the faith I need to get through this whole situation. I ended the no contact with Daron by visiting him & forgiving him for everything. I also apologized to him for being so angry with him.

Now comes the hard part....leaving the past in the past & letting God continue to work in my life. But I know that God has a greater purpose for me & I want Him to use me to my full potential. Since that cry fest I feel like a giant boulder has been lifted off my shoulders & I can finally be the real me again. I no longer feel like I have to put on my happy-go-lucky mask anymore when I leave the house. I no longer feel the uncontrollable anger taking over & I am happier. I'm back into reading my Bible on a daily basis & I truly enjoy going to church again.

Please continue to pray for my family. Satan is working overtime trying to tear us a part. I know that most of the time Daron honestly doesn't mean the hurtful things he says. He can't control them anymore due to the MS. But my continued prayer is that I will be able to differentiate the things he means from the things he doesn't.

Thank you again for walking with us as we go through this journey. God never said our lives would be easy....but He promises to give us the strength we need for each new day.

Struggles

I have been struggling to.... ....get out of bed in the morning. ....be a good mom. ....take care of my house. ....take care of myself. ...