Mar 12 2015

Grief is strange

Published by under Family,hope

It’s already March 2015! Whew – this year is flying by and I can’t believe it’s been 2 months since my dad passed away. It is really hard to think about him not being here. I start to cry whenever I do and I’ll be honest ~ I kind of just don’t think about it.

Grief is such an insidious thing that I just don’t really  want to walk down its uneven path.

Not yet.

I’m not really in denial. I mean, I know my dad is dead. His house is cleared out and sold. Boxes of pictures and files are in my tiny garage waiting for me to finish going through them.

But he isn’t gone. Not really. I mean, his and my mom’s bedroom set is in my room. The bed both my parents slept on during their last days is in my son’s room. The wicker my mom chose for “her” room is in Myka’s & Missy’s rooms. My dad’s couch is in my living room and I’m currently sitting at my mom’s beloved roll-top desk. Everywhere I look, I see their things. Things that remind me of my parents and I feel them with me.  Maybe that’s silly, but it’s how I am managing through this horrible time.

The year of firsts all over again. I remember the year after my mother died – and oh man it was so hard. One of the toughest years of my life. And I’m not looking forward to this new year of firsts.

The first 2 months are really just a blur. I was so focused on Myka that I even forgot my mom’s birthday this year. It was the first time that happened but I realized also that I no longer had someone to remind as I had reminded my dad of every birthday of my mom and sisters and brother and the grandchildren for 7 1/2 years.

Valentine’s Day also came and went with little thought. But truthfully the days that I made a point of calling Dad are coming up. Memorial Day, 4th of July, Labor Day, his birthday, that’s when I will think about the firsts.

I miss my dad every second of every day. It’s a pain that I don’t know if it will ever go away. After my mom died, it was painful for sure but I always knew I had my dad. It was my biggest fear that he would pass away someday. I was sure I’d fall apart. In a strange way, what happened with Myka took away that fear. And when I look at her today and see how lively and full of energy and LIFE she is, I can’t help but think of my dad.

Clinging to the Father’s hand,


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Feb 14 2015

It’s been a lifetime…

Published by under hope,MS,Overcomer

…Since I last updated here. A crazy, horrible, wonderful, sad, scary, grief, nightmare filled lifetime. As I’m typing this post right now I’m thankful that I learned to type by feel and not by sight since my vision is not 100% at this time.

Quick rundown of what happened after my last post:

  • Started working in the office.
  • My dad went on hospice
  • I took Paid Family Leave to help care for him 2 days per week
  • Until Thanksgiving when my Neurologist took me off work due to my MS and I went on full time disability
  • Continued to help with my dad until Christmas day when my 4 year old ended up in the PICU due to Necrotizing pneumonia with Pleural Effusion
  • Little one was in the PICU for 31 days, 18 on the ventilator with Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome, and prolonged respiratory failure on top of the other stuff
  • 2 weeks after we got home I began to lose site in my right eye due to MS.

Which brings us to today. Today I went for infusion #1 of 3. Third time in a little over a year that I’ve had to do this. I’m scheduled for my 6th MRI since July 2013! I was chatting with someone early this morning and I realized something…that I’ve been living in a form of denial since I found out I have MS. Reality comes crashing back when I have a flare up and have to have steroid infusions and go for extra MRI’s to see what new damage is happening. But during the times when I’m not feeling so bad, or super exhausted, or numb I can sort of forget I have MS. But during flare-ups it takes everything in me to not fall into depression and/or anger.

It’s strange how over 31 days with my baby in the hospital I was calm and at peace in some ways. But now that it’s me I’m so mad! I can’t even enjoy my girl being home before i have to once again rely on others to take me to and from appointments. Actually that is the hardest part. With my other flares, I was numb so I could drive myself. This time, I can’t see so it’s probably not a good idea for me to drive. But it makes me mad. And though I love my family so much and they are helping there isn’t a lot of grace and compassion towards me. It’s a little more on the grudging side.Which makes me feel bad.

And sad.

And depressed.

And alone.

I miss my dad. So much. In fact, it was because of him that I went to the ER that day in July. He was always so worried about me and while I hated worrying him, it did make me feel glad that someone out there was on my side. And I know there are so many friends praying and my sisters and  brother are on my side, there is just something when it’s your dad.

That’s it! No more pity party. No more denial. It’s time to take hold of this beast and really be the overcomer I know I am. Time to figure out how to care for my family so I’m not constantly worried about missing work.Time to take charge and stop being a victim. MS isn’t WHO I am ~ it’s WHAT I have but I am STRONGER than MS!!

But sometimes a good cry is needed. :) I love Mandisa and here is her song “Just Cry” from What If We Were Real CD.


God bless,


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Sep 16 2014

More changes and finally…peace

Published by under Faith,Family,hope,Overcomer

I’ve been MIA. Sorry ’bout that! You see –  I’m a processor and when big change comes, I tend to retreat inside until I’ve come to terms with the change.


My last post shared about my son starting high school and my daughter moving out and starting college – those were pretty big changes but that wasn’t all I had coming and that change is what caused me to hibernate.


A little background – I work full-time for a Christian ministry. I’ve been so blessed to be able to work from home for the last 10 years. I’ve been able to home school my older two for a few years, to be there to take them to and pick them up from school. I’ve been able to attend middle of the day functions at their schools because of the flexibility working from home gave to me. I’ve been able to be home and take care of my youngest from birth – no childcare needed like I did with my older 2. I’m sure you can see where this is going…yep, my working from home days are ending I’m sad to say. A meeting a few days after my last post gave me (and others on my team) the truly devastating news that as of September 29th we will have to work from the office. The at-home program is ending.


It was great while it lasted! Truly – these past 10 years have given me such an opportunity I probably never would have been able to have to know my children, to fulfill my dream of being a stay-at-home mom (in a way – I still worked 40 hours a week and many times 6 days a week to get those hours in).


So, in two weeks I will no longer wake up, work out and start work without the need of doing my hair and putting on makeup. I will no longer wear workout clothes all day or on some super busy crazy days – my pjs. 😉 I won’t be taking my son to school anymore, but I will get to pick him up. I won’t be able to snuggle with my baby girl when she first wakes up each morning or get her dressed and ready for preschool, but I will get to pick her up at the end of her day and tuck her in at night.


I am sad.


I said before it is devastating news and it is. Thus why it has taken me so long to process this change. But, it is also good. These last few weeks have forced me to rely on the Lord in a way I haven’t in a long time, I’m a bit ashamed to say. I’ve sought Him for peace in this situation and I’ve found it and for that I am thankful. That’s not to say I’m not a little apprehensive about having to be at work by 6:30am every morning and being gone all day from home and way from my sweet girl – I am. We’ve spent the last 3.5 years together every day so it will be hard for us both I’m sure. But, she will start pre-school and that will occupy her time and she will grow in new ways.


The other really great thing that has happened is I joined a Facebook group to read through the Bible. It’s with Good Morning Girls and we’ll be reading a chapter a day until we read through the entire Bible. Yes it will take a long time – but I’m glad for the slowness of it because – and I’m ashamed to admit this – I haven’t regularly read my bible in over 7 years.


Since my mom passed away.


Clearly, I decided at some point that rather than run to the Lord after she died for peace and comfort, I turned away. In retrospect I can see how damaging that has been to my heart and soul. I’ve spent time reading everyday in the Word and I’ve read Esther, 1 & 2 Peter and I will begin 1 John. I was reading on my phone or iPad but today I pulled out my old Bible that I bought when I was 19 years old after a mission trip to Mexico  (that changed me) and I saw all my old notes and highlights and I was overcome with the feeling I was coming home. :)


God is so good and I know that He has a good plan for what is happening and I will trust Him.



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Aug 25 2014

Change happens…

Published by under Family

It has been a long week!

It all started on Tuesday…

First day of school for my son who is starting high school. Pretty momentous occasion if I do say so myself. He was thrilled it was a half day and though he tried to hide it, I could tell her was excited to be going back to school.

After we dropped him off, my girls and I headed to my dad’s house to teach him how to use his iPad. Again. My dad is 82 and fairly tech savvy compared to my 75 year old mother in law who won’t even use my basis kindle! he he

Tuesday was also dorm move in day for my eldest daughter, Elle. Fortunately, her college is only 20 minutes from where we live and right across the street from her old high school (where my son attends also). She moved in early because she is a member of the William Jessup Concert Choir!

The first night, she didn’t sleep well and then she began her Choir bootcamp – 12 hour days for 2 days! That’s a lot of a girl who doesn’t do a lot each day. So needless to say, by Wednesday night she was overtired, coming down with a pretty bad cold and so was very emotional. By Thursday, she was much better and on Friday her 2nd roommate moved in.

Friday also started the NSO – New Student Orientation. 3 days of non-stop activity. I imagine that she will be dead tired tonight and sleep well before classes start tomorrow.

With all this activity, I’ve been on the go since Tuesday adding school drop off (which I didn’t have to do for 2 years thanks to Elle driving them to school), work and running back and forth between home and WJU to help Elle out and going to my dad’s to help him watch my nieces wedding on Saturday. Whew! I’m almost glad to go back to work tomorrow!

Except now I’m coming down with something. boo hoo

Never fails right? Ok so I’m off to take some cold medicine and hit the hay!

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Aug 16 2014

Overcomer – What does that mean?

Published by under hope,MS,Overcomer

Good Morning!

Welcome to my blog. If you haven’t yet, please take a moment to read my ‘About Me’ and ‘My MS Story’ pages. They will let you know who I am and really what this blog will be about.

Of course I will talk about more than MS!

One thing that was really big in my life before my MS diagnosis, was my fitness journey. It begin in September 2012 and by June 2013 I had lost 50lbs and over 40 inches! I continued working out after my diagnosis until my really bad exacerbation in November 2013. That really threw me and it has been a long journey getting back emotionally.

I’ve gained back 30lbs :( and it’s a struggle to workout now. It’s really about me starting over and finding that desire to work hard deep down once again. I have that desire so it’s time to get to work. :)

So what does it mean to be an Overcomer? To me, it means to push through and not give up. To continue to work hard and strive to reach your goals. About the time I was diagnosed, Mandisa’s song Overcomer came out on the radio. It’s become my anthem over this last year so I’m sharing it below.

Thanks for visiting!

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