Wednesday, September 8, 2010

I never meant to fall off the face of the earth.

It's way past time for an update.  Every time I sit down to type, I either find that I am too tired to put words together (coherently) or I honestly don't know what to say.  At some point, friends do not want to hear friends "whine," so it seems better to just not say anything.  Sometimes, too, you just know that you are asking too much for people to understand impossible situations.  Along with all of that - many of the trials and burdens involve other people, and there really isn't much that can be shared in those instances. 

Since March (the trial and sentencing for Nick's mugging,) events have simply snowballed one right after the other.  We keep waiting for things to slow down so that we might breathe and process - but as of yet, they have not.  I know without a doubt that I should have been journaling thru all of these days, but I just have not been able to.  There is nothing left by the end of the day - nothing that will make sense, anyway.  :)  But there are certainly many lessons learned and much deep thinking and internal revolution, still much love and gratitude and sweet moments grasped in an effort to remember.  I wish I had been able to write it all down.

Fortunately, Emmie loves to take pictures.  That helps us to remember.

Having labored thru all of that, here are some of the basics from the past month or so.  (And a few pictures, too.)

Jeff has been back at work for a month.  His hip has healed well, but somehow in the midst of that healing his neck was injured.  He suffered a lot of pain, and as the pain subsided, his left arm and hand are numb and weak.  He's been seeing a chiropractor, but without much result.  He had an MRI of his neck today, so we hope to learn results soon.

I love Mariam's cheesy grin.

My mother had her surgery (a partial knee replacement) two weeks ago on August 26.  She stayed with us for about a week.  She has not recovered as quickly as she had hoped.  She is unable to handle much pain medication, so she has a lot of discomfort.  I took her into see her surgeon today, though, and she got her staples out and was able to throw out her white surgical stockings, so it was a good day.  She has needed a lot of care and a lot of help.

Dad, doing a controlled burn.  :) He's a closet pyromaniac.
 My father's surgery (anterior hip replacement) is coming up in a week.  There are actually many appointments and a lot to do to get ready for such surgeries (and to follow up, as well.)  Dad is 12 years older than mom, but still in fairly good health other than his joints.  He is just wanting to get this done, to get it out of the way.  I am so thankful that one of my brothers and my sister will be able to be up to help out.  (They live 400+ hours away.)  By the time of the surgery I will be a little over 3 weeks away from the baby's  anticipated arrival - I just wasn't sure that I could handle 3 solid days and nights of hospital sitting at that point.  (And my mother won't be in any shape to be of help, either.)

Sam.  Part monkey...
 Which brings us to the happy topic of the baby.  I told my doctor that a new baby felt like the jewel at the end of the dark tunnel.  She happily agreed with me.  I am hoping/praying for a few quiet weeks to just sit still and "be," to enjoy the little guy and to rest a bit.  He and I are still doing great in terms of health, for which I am so thankful.  If anything, all of the craziness these past many months has kept me active and pushing forward - maybe it's kept me healthy.  I did show results of gestational diabetes, but since testing 4x daily with a glucometer I haven't had any high readings at home.  I just eat healthily and all has been well.  I still have to visit the fetal/maternal health specialist and have an ultrasound every two weeks, plus have blood titers drawn at the same interval - but other than being an annoying addition to the schedule, all is well.  Not even a hint of trouble.  I've been pleased in that I've only gained 9 lbs. thus far.  I think that has made me feel a lot better and healthier - and since I'm assured by the regular dr. and the fetal specialist that both baby and I are doing superbly - I guess that is okay.

...part actor.
 I think that's about it.  Oh, sure, I left out the parts about balancing school schedules with two surgeries (organization is key!) and kid's jobs and Jake starting college and the washer breaking down and the car breaking down and ear infections and impetigo and...and...and.  It's all...just life.

Ben:  "When life hands you dirt, enjoy it!  Make cookies or somethin'!"
 Thanks for sticking with us.  Thanks for being our friends.  Thanks for hoping and praying and rejoicing and weeping with us over these months.  God is with us.  He is bringing us thru.  He is carrying us when we don't think we can go on due to tiredness or discouragement.  He is (hopefully) maturing us and increasing what we are able to handle.  We are being drawn together as a family.  He is our Friend that stays close thru difficult times and lifts our heads for better days ahead.  May He be very real to you in the same ways!