March certainly did come in roaring like a lion. It's so stinking cold!!! If it weren't for the wind, I truly wouldn't complain. I spent the day in Anchorage and it was as calm as it could be. It even got up to over 30. Our here in the
Valley, it feels like it's 35 below zero.
My first stop of the day was to our tax accountant's office. Sherry has done our taxes since at least 1995. She's a wonderful Christian lady and I always look forward to tax time, because I like to visit with
her. A counselor would be cheaper to talk to, but not as much fun. :)
I told Sherry about my revelation of finally feeling satisfied with my role in life, and then having the dream about going back to work and being exhausted. I'm usually very
good at interpreteting dreams, but I missed the ball on this one. She said my dream was God validating the conclusion I had already come to; my body isn't up to full-time work still. I need to be content with what I am doing now, rather than dreaming about
a full-time job. Talk about a smack on the head! Of course that's what the dream meant! I truly am enjoying what I am doing and am so glad God is using me in so many areas.
I saw Dr. Spencer today. My blood tests were mostly normal. I am at the low
end of normal for my hematacrit and hemoglobin, but not low enough to explain the severe fatigue. Perhaps more testing will be done after she consults with Dr. Hogan. Right now I'm just not going to worry about it. My lungs are not clear, but she agreed that
I could wait on another chest x-ray. I don't need anymore radiation pumping through my lungs. My weight is okay. It's stable at 125 pounds. That's good enough. No drastic weight loss.
It's 4:44 a.m., and I have been awake since 3:00. I
am thankful that my schedule is flexible and I can take a nap in the afternoons if I need one. It's a daily battle still to not feel guilty for not truly being, "Wonder Woman" who has the strength to do everything. I am so thankful that I have an understanding
husband who does not get upset with me over my limitations or energy level. He never makes me feel bad about my physical health and I am very grateful to have him as my life partner.
I don't feel well. Part of it could be that I didn't sleep well, but
I do have an increase in coughing. I have a little bit of wheezing going on, so will need to keep an eye on that and make sure to go in for testing if it worsens.
I started working on my newest book, "Helping a Grieving Parent" and I am
excited about how it will help people comfort parents after losing a child to death. I'm not sure that will remain the title, but it's my working title for now. I am writing two books simultaneously. I seem to have an inability to sit idly.
These next two books are also non-fiction. I don't think I have the imagination to write a fictional book. I have always wanted to write a chldren's book and perhaps I will get to that too. All in God's timing.
This morning Mom and I will
be volunteering at Thrifter's Rock. I love that I earn $1 per hour for volunteering. I love thrift stores! I find the neatest treasures there; usually for my little grandbabies. I love spoiling them rotten. I miss them so much. I am excited that they
will be coming home in May.
I am going to make the most of my day and be the best person I can be today. That's all God asks of me. "Do good to your servant accourding to your work, O Lord. Teach me knowledge and good judment for
I believe in your commands. Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I obey your word. You are good, and what you do is good; teach me your decrees. (Ps 119:66-68)
Speaking of obeying- I also obeyed my daughter who wisely instructed
me to stay home today. I really don't feel well between the body aches and the coughing. It's time to ge back to bed. I feel bad that I cancelled my volunteer shift today, but I refuse to allow myself to feel guilty for taking a day to rest. I have turned
over a new leaf!
I believe the rest did me good. I feel so much better now. I still am not 100%, but 50% better than yesterday. Today I have some running around to do and some visiting with Granny, but nothing too strenuous.
Dr. Spencer told me she wants to buy some of my books for her office. I was THRILLED to hear that! I called Fireside Books in Palmer, and they told me when I had a book in hand, to come by their store and they may also sell my books there. I am trying
to find a place in Indiana to have a "book signing" event. I contacted my favorite establishment: The Salem Public Library, but haven't heard back yet. Things are moving forward. I like this new life.
A tragedy in our community has
occured. Of course there are many tragedies every day, but when you know a person who has had something bad happen to them, you feel an increased amount of pain. I spoke the other day of a young man who died in a snowmachine accident. Today was the memorial
for him. How thankful I am that the love of Jesus was shared to the thousand plus people who attended his service. Jacob was 19 years old. He had his whole life ahead of him, yet in an instant, the spark was gone. His parents and sister spoke about his "ADHD"
induced behavior. Jacob wasn't able to sit still, he was impulsive, yet he was gifted, intelligent, and loved. He accepted Christ at the age of seven. Years later, addiction took hold and he lived on the street for over a year. He returned home to his family
in October and how they celebrated and rejoiced; the prodigal son returned. His father spoke of being laid off work in December. The family couldn't understand why, but his dad said he knew God had a plan. It's clear now that the plan was for him to be at
home; renewing his relatonship with his son. He got all that extra time with Jacob and felt a sense of peace he hadn't felt in so long. Jacob renewed his relationship with Christ and we know he's celebrating in Heaven. Losing a child to death is the worst
thing a parent could ever experience. I'm thankful they have the peace and love of God surrounding them.
I think I have made a mistake and I think I am repeating last year's travesty. I am sick and it's almost my birthday
and I am in Texas. My cough is worse. I have body aches. I probably shouldn't have come. If I end up in the hospital on my birthday again I am never planning another celebration. I am worried I have pneumonia. I think I need to find a doctor today.
I went to a clinic and had a chest x-ray. I do not have pneumonia thankfully. I have bronchitis and an ear infection. I am on yet another antibiotic. My orders are to rest and drink lots of water. I have done nothing today but sit and read. This is not what
I wanted for this trip. But I would rather be sick while Patrick is in meetings instead of when he's free to explore Texas and Louisiana with me! The hotel is beautiful and we have a nice size suite. There are much worse things in life. I am not in the hospital
and for that I am most grateful.
Thankfully I feel better today. The body aches have subsided for the most part and my cough seems to be lessening. I spent my day at the spa. I treated myself to a massage and facial. I also spent some
time in the steam room and the hot tub. I think I give myself the best birthday presents! I met a couple neat gals there. One was telling me about a friend of her mother's whose daughter died in a swimming accident. I passed my information along to her and
told her I would love to include her daughter's story in my Helping Grieving Parents book.
Speaking of books, looks like we are a go with "Killing Leuk". My author's copy is being produced now. Once I see it and all looks good, I give hem the
green light to start placing orders. I am so excited and thankful for the opportunity to share Logan and my story with others.
Its almost 1 am and once again I am sleepless. I have resorted to taking Ativan the last few nights. It's not working as well
as it used to. It takes me longer and longer to fall asleep and I still don't sleep great. I'm not sure how long I can go on like this. I can't even fall asleep during the day for a nap anymore. My body and mind desperately needs rest.
Today was a better day. I am certainly feeling better. I finally fell asleep about 2:30 and slept till almost 10! I woke up a few times, but went right back to sleep. Glorious!
Tomorrow morning we head out towards New Orleans. I get to have dinner
with my cousin, David, and his wife and daughter tomorrow night. They are actually closer to Baton Rouge. We are having craw fish for dinner! Friday night we will stay in New Orleans and eat Cajun food and listen to jazz for my birthday.
50! My cousin David Lee and I sat in his house last night reminiscing about our childhood - mostly talking about the fun times we had at Granny's. He, Mark, our cousin Holly, and I, would play for hours in the woods, in the pond, and in the orchard. We
would fish, swing from grape vines, play telephone practical jokes, and just laugh. It seems like yesterday, but I surely was a long time ago! I am thankful for the memories and I am thankful that I am alive, healthy, and not in the hospital. I am thankful
I got to wake up in my cousin's house in Louisiana. Patrick and I will be heading to New Orleans this afternoon.
Life is good and I am content. Thank you, Jesus for your restoring power.
Yesterday was so much fun. We walked
for miles around the French Quarter taking in all the beautiful historical sights. What a neat place; so rich in history. We stopped at a beautiful Catholic Church and I prayed for all my sick friends and for those struggling with addiction problems. I am
not catholic, but the spirit of God moved me while I sat in that pew.
I was so happy all day. I felt special and loved by my husband and the many people who wished me a happy birthday. We got to Face Time with the girls and Meghan and Ollie sang me
happy birthday while Ailynn just grinned. Both my parents called me as did Granny. I am truly blessed. I felt like sharing my story in front of the hundreds on the street. I probably would have if I had a microphone! Today we are going on a swamp tour and
then an evening jazz cruise on the Mississippi In a paddlewheel boat.
Yesterday's tours were a lot of fun. I got to hold a baby alligator! We saw lots of alligators, turtles, birds, and a snake. I enjoyed the airboat. We also enjoyed
the jazz cruise, but I got feeling pretty bad the last hour. I spent the last 45 minutes lying on a bench with my head on Patric's lap. I had hit the wall. My cough is horrible and I had a bad headache,
Today we drove to Biloxi MS. I am very tired so
am going to rest. Patrick is out exploring.
This whole trip we have been fortunate to have had very nice hotels at reasonable prices. I use Hotel.com and earn a free night for every ten stays. We have had beautiful hotels until last night
and tonight. EPIC FAIL! I am not happy with this last hotel at all. It's a real downgrade from the others and about the same price we paid for the nice ones! It's the kind of hotel that made me want to check and see if there were bugs in the sheets. Yuck!
Surprisingly, the bed isn't too bad. Unfortunately, I coughed all night and have a splitting headache. I have no Ibuprofen or Tylenol. When Patrick wakes up we are going to need to go to a store. I don't want our last night to be a bummer because once again
I don't feel well.
A year ago I was in ICU. This year I am on an amazing trip with my loyal husband. We still like each other after spending ten days road tripping! He puts up with a lot as I have so many issues. Again, every time I convince myself
I can go back to work, I get sick and am struck with major fatigue. God keeps hitting me over the head- maybe that's why I have this horrible headache!
We are in Galveston Texas these next two days- we arrived yesterday. We enjoyed Louisiana and
Mississippi. A bonus for me was seeing my cousin David Lee, his wife Holly, and daughter Hanna. We even got a tour of the FBI office where he is a Special Agent. My dream job...
Today we fly home. It's been an amazing trip. I am going
to have withdrawals from being with Patrick every day. We have had a lot of fun together. However, I am looking forward to extra bedrooms at home. I have been awake since 0430 because of his restless leg and arm issues. Funny, now that I am showered and dressed,
he's lying here peacefully- not moving or snoring. So unfair!!!
We won't get to our house till about 0130 tomorrow morning. I am eager to peruse my author's copy of my book to check for errors. If it's all good, the book can be published and available
for sale. How exciting!
I am also eager to get started on my Genesis Process training so I can start facilitating the substance abuse support group at church. The books are finally in. I will resume all volunteer duties next week at Thrifter's Rock
and the library. I am so thankful I can help our community. I am also eager to catch up with all my friends who are in cancer treatment. I am doing additional training with Be The Match. I am going to (hopefully) be meeting with staff at Mayo my next visit
as a representative of Be the Match. Another volunteer job. I will meet with various transplant centers to offer support to patients. Of course I won't be flying around the country doing this (would be nice), but when the opportunity is there, I can share
info to help others which is great.
Granny has called me almost everyday. She sure misses me! I can't wait to see her. I miss ALL my family!
I am thankful and hopeful. Life is good and God is great.
Our trip home was uneventful,
but very, very long. It's so hard on my joints to sit that long. I had been awake since 0430 the day we left. Patrick had issues with his restless leg/restless arms and he kept me awake. I finally gave up at 0430 and didn't even try to sleep anymore. At least
he didnt punch me in the back like he did in his sleep last week. Or at least he "pretended" to be asleep, hahaha. Our flight didn't leave till 5:40 p.m. So we went to a movie matinee to kill time. We saw "Logan". The movie. I did not hallucinate seeing our
son, although that would have been awesome. We landed at midnight. Our luggage was delayed and then we had to wait for a shuttle. We got home about 0145. Despite my early wake-up, I couldn't fall askeep till about 0330. I was too excited to see my author's
copy of my book. It's available for purchase now.
I was up for 26 hours. Today I did laundry and unpacked my suitcases. I didn't take a shower until 3:00 this
afternoon. Right now I feel like I have been run over by a truck. My cough is still bad. I was embarrassed because I couldn't stop coughing on the plane. The lady next to me handed me a cough drop.
All in all, we had a fabulous trip. It was certainly
the best birthday I have had in quite awhile. It certainly beat last year's "party" in the hospital. Yeah, there was NO party last year. We made up for it this year. Celebrating my 50th birthday on a spontaneous road trip was superb. So much better than our
spontaneous road trip to Idaho in 2014 when I was diagnosed with leukemia. God has been good and faithful.
I thororoughly enjoyed New Orleans. It does remind me a bit of Vegas. There's a lot of alcohol flowing and too many indecent places. I would
not want to take a child there. No need to show them pictures of naked women on store fronts. I think things in our country are getting worse and worse as far as morality goes. The problem lies with us "accepting" corrupt things. Things are "normalized " and
we accept immorality and corruption. We seem to have taken a turn for the worse and racism seems to be coming back. It concerns me greatly. I don't see color or race. I see humans. We all need to encourage our peers to stand together and not be divided.
I have slept well the past two nights! Hallelujah, thank you Jesus! I'm still tired, but I slept! I got up at 0530 today eager to start my training for being a patient ambassador with Be the Match, and my substance abuse training. One big
problem.... the email with the link for the ambassador training simply disappeared from my email. It wasn't even in my junk mail. I started the online training for the substance abuse and realized I need to print out the 100 plus page counselor's training
manual at church. My little printer can't handle that many pages....So, I got nothing accomplished darn it.
I went to a meeting for the Homeless Committee today. Of course I wanted to sign up to help in every area. My dad's voice played in my head like
a broken record...."Stop volunteering for so many things. You are overloading yourself and you need to rest." Of course I snorted in amusement. Who is HE to give me a lecture on doing too much!? Where does he think I got it from? He and my mother....😜
Life is good.
My day began on the treadmill listening to praise music and then watching Joyce Meyer. I have missed my treadmill prayer time these past two weeks. It's so easy to get out of the habit of spending regular time with God.
Joyce was talking about attitudes and how we absolutely can control how we act. Her show got interrupted to bring us a special news report. It seems allegations are flying in Washington D.C. An investigation by the FBI and NSA is taking place.
Our country is in serious turmoil and our future is really at stake. Our nation has been seriously divided and people are cruel, hateful, and disrespectful to one another just because their political views differ. Why can't we ALL spend our mornings with God?
If we do, we will think carefully about our attitude, our words, and our actions. I dread looking at Face Book today after hearing this report this morning. All peple are doing is spewing hate and creating a deeper chasm that I fear will never close. Our country
is a mess. I was talking with Granny the other day and she feels we are in the end times. I fear it's going to get far worse before Jesus comes back. I want to be spiritually ready to meet him.
We all have a story. Our story was defined before we were
even born. It's up to us how we handle our trials and tribulations. It's up to us to decide what attitude we are going to have today. Are we going to be bitter? Distrustful? Hateful? Or are we going to be forgiving, honorable, loving, and gracious? I
want to choose to have a good attitude. I want to choose to be grateful for being alive. I want to do everything I can to help my fellow humans. I won't allow bitterness and disappointment destroy my life.
I have been thinking about the many friends
I have who are battling cancer right now. Terri is finally home- recovering from knee surgery. She actually had to have her knee replacement (from several years ago) removed because of a terrible infection. Her knee has to heal so she's allowed to be
home for that process. Terri has been in the hospital for months and months. From my understanding, she is going to get a new knee in a few months, then will be transferred to another hospital for the bone marrow transplant she needs for her leukemia. Can
you imagine all she has been through? I cannot fathom the sheer agony of what she has gone through. Yet she has kept a positive and hopeful attitude. I want to be like Terri.
I think about the many people fighting addiction. I belong to an addiction
group on FB. Everyday I read excerpts of stories of people fighting to survive. Some write they are a few days clean, and so proud. It's literally heartbreaking. Others plead for people to give them encouragement because they are considering suicide. Again
I say, our world is in turmoil. How can we help our fellow men/women? By praying.....that is the most important thing we can do. Pray without ceasing. Pray for brains to be completely restored/rewired to what God deems to be a perfectly created brain.
Pray for serotonin and dopamine levels to even out. Pray for the frontal lobe to be restored. Pray for emotions to normalize, memories to be restored, impulsivity to be gone. Pray for healing. Don't have the attitude "they did it to themselves". These are
your sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, parents, nieces, nephews, and friends. They need you. Find a way to help them.
Every child of God is worth saving. God values each of us more than diamonds, rubies,sapphires and gold. Every one of us is special.
How can you make a difference in someone elses' life? What cause can you support? Let us not have the attitude of being high and mighty. Let us not ignore the ones who need our help. Let us have a mindfulness of God around us at all times and put others before
George Mueller said, "Even when our situation appears to be impossible, our work is to hope in God. Our hope will not be in vain, and in the Lord's own timing, help will come." YOU are that help for those in despair and need. It's YOU!
Not someone else. The Lord instructs us to feed the hungry. To love our neighbors as ourselves. To remove the plank out of our own eyes before we remove the plank from our brother's eyes. Let us not have an attitude of superiority. Let us humble ourselves
and pour his love out on our families, our community, our nation, and the world. Let us change the path this country has taken. Let us stand up and declare HE IS GOD! Let us stop making excuses for not going to church, for accepting immoral acts and behaviors,
for the foul language around us, and the dishonesty that is so prevelant in today's world. We can stand up and say NO MORE. We can stand up and say, "That is not from God and I won't participate." Let us not accept ungodly behavior. The wrath of the Lord should
I have to be completely honest with you.... I looked VERY cute today. My hair looked amazing. I can say this because that is not usually the case. Lately I have been having very bad hair days. The curls are turning into
waves- frizzy waves at that. But today, I looked great! I went to the post office to mail two packages. One to Kirk (SIL) and one to the girls. The girls' box was not shutting well. I told the postmaster that I was concerned about it coming open. He took some
tape and secured it properly. He said, "How was that?" I exclaimed, "My granddaughters will thank you that their Easter gifts are secured." He replied, "You are not old enough to have grandchildren. What are you, 35?" I replied, "I just turned 50!" He said,
"You were blessed with the fountain of youth." I left there pretty proud of myself.
I got to the library to do my volunteer shift feeling high from the compliment. Twenty minutes later, I started to get dizzy and felt light headed. Then I got nauseous.
I could barely move. I sat in a chair with my head hung knowing I couldn't fulfill my duties. My hear sank as I offered my apologies and left.
Meghan called this afternoon and I shared my story. At the same time we both exclaimed that's what happens
when one feels smug and proud of themselves! God was reminding me that beauty is on the inside, not the outside. I have been put humbly in my place..... But my hair does still look good today! :)
Casey Marre is 27 today. My middle child.
Things haven't been easy for Casey, but he continues to tread along striving for his place in the world. I love him so very much. He always could make or break my moods by his smile or his actions. He is a loving little boy inside of a man's body. I treasure
him. I truly wish I could go back in time and be a better mother. One that was totally "there" for him and helped him choose better paths to take. I pray for him every single day. God is working in his life.
I was "on air" today with Country Legends
100.9. I feel like the interview went well. Hopefully people will be at the bone marrow drive after hearing us talk about it. Of course I hope more people will purchase my book too. I am donating $1 per book to four charities that benefited Logan. Ronald McDonald
House, Make-A-Wish, Be the Match, and Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. I want to sell 4,000 books so I can donate $1,000 to each charity.
I had to take anti-nausea medication just to get through the interview. The "stars" continue to dance around
my eyes and make me lightheaded. My stomach just rolls. I assume it is dehydration and GVHD wreaking havoc upon my poor body. I still did three miles on the treadmill this morning. I am stubborn and committed to pushing myself in order to regain what
I have lost.
Andrew Womack had a powerful message this morning. He said we should pray everything in the name of Jesus, and command whatever ails us to leave us alone. I was thining about this and the way he explained it makes sense.
God knows what our problems are. We aren't sharing anything new with him. What we should be doing, is using the authority God gave us to command the problem to leave us. If we believe in our hearts and minds, and command "in the Name of Jesus", we DO have
the authority to do this. It's nothing I hadn't heard before, but he explained it a way that really made sense to me today and I am changing the way I pray. I had already started "visualizing" freedom from an illness, addiction, etc in myself and others. I
will add this as well and hopefully will see a difference in my life and the lives of those I pray for.
We had a nice dinner with Casey and my parents last night at Evangelos. We shared a good meal and good laughter. I feel so bad for my dad who cannot
hear very well. I felt like I was yelling in the restaurant so he could be a part of the conversation. I have been praying for his ears to miraculously open up so he can hear. It's so hard on him to miss out on conversations. I know he's self-conscious about
it and I hurt for him.
This morning I am going to Connect (Bible Study) at church. In fact, it's time to get moving. But let me give you a simpler way to pray for people first. When I am on social media (definitely spend too much time on there)
I pray for a person whose post I see. If I see one from my friend, Tina, I immediately start praying for her health because she has lots of physical ailments. I do the same thing when I see a post from Diane- she has fought breast cancer for several years.
Sometimes I say a "quick prayer" and sometimes a lengthy one. Whatever God leads me to do. When I get milk out of my refrigerator, first I thank God I have a refrigerator that works, then I thank God for the Havemeister's who have the cows that supply the
milk I buy. I wish them financial and physical blessings. It's so simple and easy to do. When I person comes to mind, I pray for them. I pray a lot because my mind never shuts off. Kind of like my mouth....
God orchestrates meetings between
people and it's simply amazing. The other day, Greg, responded to my announcement on FB that we are having a bone marrow drive tomorrow. Greg's story is eerily similar to mine. His mom died many years ago of ALL. (what Logan had) In January, Greg was diagnosed
with AML (like me) and he needs a transplant. We added each other as "FB Friends". One of his FB friends saw my name and sent me a message. Jennifer and I have known each other since 1997. When Logan was sick, Jennifer reached out to us and brought her son,
North Jr., to see Logan. North Jr. had ALL also and had a bone marrow transplant. Jennifer and I stayed in touch for many years, but then we lost touch. I had tried earnestly to find her- of course utilizing social medial to do so. I was not successful and
often wondered what happened to them. We were ecstatic to catch up with one another again. North has had so many problems and complications following his transplant. He has severe chronic GVHD and has had two additional cancers since he had leukemia. I believe
he's 30 now. Despite the set-backs and the disappointments, I know they are thrilled they still have their boy. I'm so happy for them all. I would have loved to have kept Logan even if he had major complications. I am not envious of Jennifer because she still
has her son, but I am happy for her. I know they are very thankful and they have used their experiences to help others.
Last night I got to visit with my sweet friend Carol. She and I began to talk about the addiction crisis in our community.
She shared with me that three children,of two of her friends, has a heroin addiction. I have more people to pray for now. I believe heroin will be erradicated from our communities. I am so thankful to the friends I have who truly want to help people who are
sick, addicted, or homeless. What a better world we have because of people like Carol.
Life is good and very busy. I have signed up for more "at home" volunteer work. I can barely keep up. I need to figure out a regular routine to get into. God is good,
all the time, God is good!
Meghan shared with me that she read the first three chapters of my book to Olivienne, who is three. Ollie was concentrating intently on the content. The last paragraph of my first chapter ends with, "I knew something bad was
going to happen." Ollie was eager to have her mommy read what that "bad thing" was. I think it's amazing that she has the comprehension at that age to grasp contents. Meghan finished the book while the girls napped. Ailynn slept in Meghan's arms while she
read the rest. She said she cried so much that Ailynn's little body shook from her sobs. Meghan and Casey have to relive their experiences when they read this book. I pray it's healing for them, and not traumatic.
The bone marrow drive
at Mat-Su College went well today. We registered 17 people. Perhaps one of them will be the one who gets to save a life. Wouldn't that be awesome? I love bone marrow drives. I made two VERY good connections today. One leads up Volunteer Services at Mat-Su
Regional. She asked me if I would be interested in hosting a drive during the Union health fairs this fall. Would I? Can you say YES loudly and with enthusiasm? How about a HECK YES! This is exactly what I have been wanting- a foot in the door. The other
person who contacted me lives in Talkeetna- another area I have wanted to host drives in. They are planning a big art and health event in the fall. I told her I would be extremely interested in paticipating. I just know lives are going to be saved. Our volunteer
group is changing the world- one match at a time. Hallelujah!
Casey sent me a text saying he "finally got through Chapter 13". The beginning of the book is all about his older brother and his battle with leukemia. I can't imagine the pain my sweet Casey
is feeling right now. It opens up old wounds that were never really healed in the first place. I will have to pray extra hard for him tonight.
Patrick participated in the Homer Winter King Derby today. Unbelievably, they never caught a fish. These are
men who ALWAYS catch fish. Darn it! I was looking forward to his cash prize. I knew just how to spend it. :) I'm glad they had fun and I'm glad he got away from here for awhile. I think I stress him out.
I heard about several who recently died from
drugs. My heart is so broken for these parents. So broken. I want to save the world. Of course only Jesus can save the world, but I think I am going to die trying. I just have to slow down a bit. I'm so very tired. Last night was a rough one for me with very
little sleep. Thankfully Patrick called at 0800. If he wouldn't have called, I may have missed the bone marrow drive! It took me forever to fall asleep and I slept fitfully all night long.
I look forward to church tomorrow. I love going to sing God's
praises and rejoice that I AM ALIVE AND LEUK IS DEAD. That feeling never gets old.
Church was simply amazing today. Oh my goodness, no matter what we go through, God is there by our side. I just can't imagine what it would be like
to not know God and to be assured and reassured of his promises to carry us through in our times of tribulation.
I had a really neat conversation with someone today. I will call him Manuel. Manuel is a recovering drug addict and he's searching for God.
I was able to share my faith with him and hopefully instill some hope and light into his life. He has a burning desire to help others in our community who have had similar experiences such as his. These are not "accidental" meetings. These are meetings completely
orchestrated by God. How blessed I am to meet such inspiring people. To get through being addicted to drugs and become gainfully employed is absolutely impressive. He has hope for his future. There are still many, many things he has to work through; some of
them legal matters. God is working on his heart and i will be praying for him daily. I believe he will be a change maker in our community.
Patrick is home from fishing. He is disappointed they didn't catch a single fish in the derby, but he sure had
a good time. He needed the rest and relaxation. I am glad to have him home.
Last night I had a stomach ache before bed. This morning I was nauseous. I seem to be feeling better, but there's still a little reminder that something isn't
quite right. My dad has a stomach virus and is vomiting. I feel so bad for him. I think mine is GVHD related, not a virus. I called Carrie, my nurse at Mayo today. I had to confess that I got sunburned in Hawaii. I wouldn't have confessed it, but now
I have these strange itchy patches on my leg. It's possible it's GVHD. Of course she suggested more of the horrible Prednisone. Right now we agreed to me applying the steroid creme I have on my legs in hopes it gets better. If we aren't careful, and it is
GVHD, it can get away from us and cause serious complications.
I am meeting with a grieving mother today. It's been a month since her son died suddenly. I pray God gives me a compassionate heart and a good listening ear.
It's 11:11 and
all I have accomplished today is dusting the house and doing some work on advertising for my book signings. I need to go take a shower, go to the post office, and the store. I must figure out how to get better organized. I used to be such an organized person.
Now I am truly scattered with my thoughts and activities.
I found myself humming and singing last night as I made dinner. I realized I felt extremely happy and was amazed to discover how well I felt. I wasn't hurting, I wasn't exhausted,
I was just perfectly happy. Not only did I get the dusting down yesterday, but I also vacuumed and spot mopped upstairs. I felt successful. :)
This morning I had two messages from people requesting prayer for two additional people who have been diagnosed
with cancer. One request was from our friend, Dennis. Dennis said he had read my book and was moved by the scriptures I included in it. It brought him hope and comfort as he just learned his sister's Leukemia had returned. He said he was going to text
her a different scripture I quoted each day. I told hm I would definitely pray for Paula. The other request was from my friend, Ailaina who shared with me there is a woman in Kenai who has a very difficult cancer and is having to fly out of state each month
for treatment. She wants to get a book for her friend in hopes to bring comfort to her and her family.
God never gives up on us and he pours out his power and love every single moment of the day. It's up to receive his blessings and his message. I know
some people are really struggling right now. This blog is unfortunately not interactive. I would love to turn this into a question and answer blog- kind of like a "Dear Abby". If you would like to ask me questions, or make suggestions, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will not identify people in the response. Ask me anything from grief, to leukemia complications, to personal issues.
This morning I had the most amazing teleconference with other
BMT survivors on Be the Match. Wow! The topic was "navigating relationships after transplant." My sisters and brothers! It was simply amazing to hear others speak about their relationships, difficulties, hopes, dreams, and roadblocks after transplant. I actually
feel "normal" now. I'm normal, because other people who have had transplants feel just like I do! Someone can relate to me and it feels so darn good.
I'm going to visit my friend John today. He has a few more weeks of chemo. I am looking forward to
our visit. I'm taking him a requested lunch; Dairy Queen! I may just get myself some fast food junk too. :) Doesn't hurt once in awhile. I got news today that one lady I have prayed for, Asia, is home from the hospital. She has Stage 4 cancer and she
was in pretty bad shape last week.
If you watched Joyce Meyer this morning, you will have to forgive me for taking her illustration and putting my own twist on it. Part of this are Joyce's words, and part my thoughts. I think it makes
sense and I was excited when I heard her speak about it.
She started with an illustration of a girl who was complaining about something. The girl's father took her in the kitchen. He took three pots and filled them with water. In the first pot
he put in uncooked potatoes, the second pot he put in fresh eggs, and in the third pot, he put in coffee beans. After 20 minutes, he took them off the stove and asked the girl what she saw. Of course she said, potatoes, eggs, and coffee. Then he asked
her to touch each item. The potatoes were soft, the eggs became hard, and the coffee beans and boiling water actually changed the water and made a delicious smelling drink.
This is where I am going to change Joyce's illustration just a bit. The
potato was hard before it was cooked. I relate that to someone who has a "hardened" attitude or spirit. Perhaps the hardened person has had a lot of tragedy in their life. Maybe they are in a dead end relationship, they are having financial problems, perhaps
they are sick, or maybe they are an addict. When they are placed in GOD'S HOLY WATER, their tough, hardened presence begins to soften and God molds and makes them into a person experiencing spiritual freedom. They are no longer hard.
Now take the egg
which had a soft yolk and membrane. It was perfectly shaped. It was put in boiling water and became hardened. Think of it this way- you are the perfectly designed by God, egg. You surround yourselves with non-Christians, you focus on all the tragedies
in your life and in the world. That boiling water you were put in was the world. You have no longer maintained the presence of God in your life. You have let the world take over and harden you.
Then there's the coffee beans. After boiling, they changed
into a wonderful beverage many of us love; coffee. It smelled good, it tasted good. The water changed the form of the coffee bean. It was a scientific procress of change. But that's what God does to us; he changes us from the inside out. He gives us
the power to be a light in the darkness; a delightful aromatic presence that will soften the hardest person we are around. We must be careful not to let the weight of the world turn us into hardened eggs, but strive to be changed people, inside and out, and
transformed like the coffee bean.
I hope that makes sense to you. I had a conversation yesterday with a mother whose son had struggled with an addiction problem for quite some time. When her son allowed God back into his hardened heart,he had a burning
desire to share his love for God with his friends who also struggled with addiction. His mother wisely counseled him to be careful, because she knew that his friends could still easily influence her son. God tells us to surround ourselves with people who have
Godly characters and not to let the sins of the world touch us. Of course we should share the love of Jesus with the unsaved, but we must be careful not to allow the "world" to touch us.
"Of course you'll encounter trouble. But behold a God of
power who can take any evil and turn it into a door of hope." Catherine Marshall
Do not let your heart envy sinners, but always be zealous of the fear of the Lord. There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off. Proverbs
One Hundred Things God Loves About You (Copyright Zondervan):
When the world comes crashing, banging, stomping, and complaining through your life, it can make you want to turn and run and hide. So DO IT! Hide away from the world
for a little while. Let God heal your wouldned heart. Let him fill your spirit with his strength and your soul with his songs. Then you can go back and face the world again, because God loves the way you hide in him.
my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance. Psalm 32:7
The end of March. It came in roaring like a lion and I think it's leaving the same way. At least I am hearing a lot of roaring
from people. Complaints, dissatisfaction, unhappiness, grief, anger, disgust, disappointment.....All of us have strife in our life. We all have disappointments, and at time feel unhappy. But the joy of our Lord is our strength. We can be optomistic and hopeful
in ALL circumstances. There are reasons for everything. It's not God's fault when things go wrong. If only we would all make a deliberate decision to consult God before we speak, before we leave our houses, or before we confront someone who hasn't treated
us kindly. What a difference we would make in our own lives and the lives of others.
We are a selfish nation and we desire our own happiness, we want a pat on the back for our good works, we want to be appreciated. We want.....we want..... we want......
How about we start giving for a change? Give someone else a compliment, a pat on the back, a helping hand. It starts with us. I'm going to be kind to everyone I meet today. Will you?