• 30Apr

    I’m standing in the back of the U-haul with the dishwasher, washing machine, and dryer, waiting for some help when I had a funny thought.  I went over to the dryer, opened the door and sure enough, there were some clothes in there.  My Dad showed up around the corner and gave me a questioning look and I just grinned and said, “Oh, I was just doing laundry.”  Michele (a friend) perks up and says, “Just goes to show a woman’s work is never done.”  Doing laundry in the back of a U-haul?. . . just can’t get away from that laundry!

  • 30Apr

    I helped unload our U-haul of stuff from West Virginia today.

    “Oh look! A ladder.  That will be useful for putting those last couple of piece of drywall up on the ceiling in the dining room.  And here’s our screw gun, too.”

    “There’s Dan’s dress shoes.  They still look so new.”

    “That mattress still has a sheet on it.  It’s like a testimony to how fast our lives changed.”

    “Ouch.  That one hurts.  There is the little table Dan made for his computer so that he could work from bed while recovering from surgery.”

    “I thought he threw that car seat out!”

    “Why did we save this?”

    “I forgot the dryer was starting to rust like that.”

    “Oh! What am I going to do with all these clothes!!”

    “I know where I want to put that.”

    “That microwave is filthy!”

    Watching those pieces of our life together going past me into a life where Dan is no more, was difficult to say the least.  So many memories, so much love, so much fun and happiness . . . 

    One thing remains the same – God was part of our life then and God is part of our lives now.  He is faithful and His promises are true.  He will never leave us or forsake us.  He will provide and protect.  We have but to trust in Him.

  • 30Apr

    4-29-09

    When I think about watching Dan take that last breath it never fails to bring the tears.  Sometimes in my mind I want to throw myself at him and scream, literally, NO! NO! NO!  Other times all I can do is whisper, Oh God!  That was all I could say almost that whole week in the hospital.  I would find a bathroom where I would slump against a wall and just cry “Oh God!  Oh God.”  Sometimes I could barely stay upright.  Even now the grief still hits and I find myself crumpling to the floor and crying “Oh God.”  And He hears me.  He sees my unbearable pain and He steps in and shoulders the load so that I can get up again and stumble a few more steps.

  • 27Apr
    Categories: Family Updates Comments Off on More Pictures
    More pictures on the Pictures Page!!
    Putting up the garage roof

    Putting up the garage roof

  • 27Apr

    I was reading a book last night called “None to Give Away”.  The author was a young widow with five babies (two sets of twins!) and she mentions that sometimes she felt resentful of her children because they made her live.  They made her keep going when what she really wanted to do was give up and follow her hubby to heaven.  I find that I am reluctant to admit anything of the sort for fear my children will read it and misunderstand.  But I think I agree with her.  That is what makes me so mad at Dan.  Dying is the easy part, it’s the living that’s the hard part.  And living alone just makes it harder.  So when things pile up, the pressures push in from all sides, and multiple demands are placed on me all at once, that is when I want to melt into a puddle on the floor and say “Why was I left with all the work!  Why can’t I take the easy way out?  This is supposed to be a partnership.  This job was not designed for one person to handle alone!”  And sometimes the resentful thoughts about my children rise to the surface and I try to quickly squelch them for fear that the Lord will take me seriously.

     

    The Lord often takes me seriously . . too seriously.  When I got married I asked the Lord for a year with just my hubby and me before we started having kids.  One year and one month later we had Benjamin (6).  I was thinking a little more along the lines of a year without being pregnant, too, but apparently that wasn’t what I said.  (Although I do remember being a bit disappointed that first month or two when I realized that I wasn’t pregnant . . . )  Dan and I joked on several occasions about having 6 kids in 6 years and just get it all done and over with and move on to the job of raising the kids.  God must have thought 7 was a better number (7 kids in 7 years), but once again I find that He took me seriously.  I told Him I wanted out of that house (WV) by winter and we were.  We only started the wood stove once or twice during the colder fall weather, then Dan went in for surgery and that was that.  I told Dan (with God listening) that if something happened to him I didn’t want to pack up that attic!  Everything happened so fast and I had so many responsibilities all at once that my entire house got packed up without my help.  Again God took me seriously.  It makes me very cautious as to what I say and think.  That is probably a good thing.  I don’t know why I would ever think that God doesn’t listen to me.  Sometimes I think He listens too closely

  • 24Apr
    Categories: Grieving Comments: 1

    4-23-09

    Maranatha (2) brought me her little Dora play phone yesterday and told me that her “daddy wan to talk you”.

    I want to talk to him to!  That has to be one of the most difficult phone conversations I’ve ever encountered.  Her big brown eyes just watching me to see what I would do.

    Oh my heart aches!  Any time we were away from Daddy for an extended length of time we made sure the kids had a chance to talk to him on the phone.  But I can’t just call him up and tell him we all miss him.  I can’t end the conversation with a “We’ll see you soon!”  I can’t give the kids a date and number of days as to when their Daddy will be back. 

     

    But we will see him again.  I like to think that he’s helping God build our mansions.

  • 24Apr
    Categories: Grieving Comments: 2

    4-22-09

    I have to admit it.  I am depressed.  Lack of sleep gets me every time.  In the midst of my depression I find myself grouching at the Lord.  “I don’t want the job of giving You the glory.  I’m tired of being an example of Your grace.  Did You even ask me if I wanted to glorify You?  If You want Your glory to shine through this measly little human, well, then you are going to have to take over her body today.  I don’t want to help.  I don’t want to fight sins battles today.  I don’t want to do anything, I just want to go back to bed, cover my head and pretend that the world doesn’t exist.

    I think He must have taken over, because I did get up, I did take care of my kids, I did face the world although I did protest a bit.  He really can be very pushy. 

    Looking at these words I muse . . . “Looks like pride is attacking again.  What makes me think that He needs my help?” 

    And the real problem emerges.  I am trying to do it on my own again.  He didn’t ask for my help, He wants to do it through me, not by me.  Sorry Lord, let’s try this again.

  • 24Apr
    Categories: Grieving Comments: 2

    4-21-09

    Tonight I looked at a verse in Psalms that says “I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.”  My tired mind said, “Yep, that’s right.  I will trust Him to get me through this . . . “  Then my brain foggily protested the “get me through” part.  All those bits and pieces of advice that say things like, “Life is a journey. . . The destination is only part of the trip . . . The end doesn’t justify the means . . .” came back to haunt me and I wondered just how much my brain has been warped, . . again. It seems to be easier for me to adjust to the idea of trusting God with things like waiting for the right man to show up, which college to choose, which house to buy, how to take care of this many kids, etc.  But when the duties pile up, the list of important tasks gets longer than my arm, the pressures of multiple things demand my attention, then I have a problem trusting God to help me IN that situation, but rather I just want God to help me THROUGH that situation.

    Stopping in the middle of a stress point to pray for help in that particular moment often eludes me.  Even now I find myself just praying to survive the pain, -“Just get me through it Lord and then maybe we can do something important on the other side”- but it’s the journey through the pain where His glory shines the brightest.  I should be asking for His help, not to just survive, but to shine in the midst of my trials.

  • 21Apr
    Categories: Grieving Comments: 7

    Here are the words to the medley that I played for special music on Sunday night.

     

    Jesus loves me, This I know.
    Does Jesus care when my heart is pained
    Too deeply for mirth and song;
    As the burdens press, and the cares distress,
    And the way grows weary and long?
    Does Jesus care when my way is dark
    With a nameless dread and fear?
    As the daylight fades into deep night shades,
    DOES HE CARE enough to be near?
    Jesus loves me, this I know
    For the Bible tells me so.
    Does Jesus care when I’ve tried and failed
    To resist some temptation strong;
    When for my deep grief I find no relief,
    Though my tears flow all the night long?
     

    Jesus loves me, this I know
    For the Bible tells me so.
    Little ones to Him belong
    They are weak
    Yes, they are weak
    but HE is strong
    But
    Does Jesus care when I’ve said “good-by”
    To the dearest on earth to me,
    And my sad heart aches till it nearly breaks
    IS it aught to Him, DOES HE SEE?
    When peace like a river, attendeth my way,
    When sorrows like sea billows roll;
    WHATEVER my lot,
    Thou hast taught me to say
    It is well
    IT IS WELL
    With my soul
    He CARES
    I KNOW He cares,
    His heart is touched with my grief;
    When the days are weary,
    The long nights dreary,
    I know my Savior cares.
    Yes, Jesus loves me
    The Bible tells me so.
    They are weak
    BUT, HE is strong.

  • 21Apr

    I am so incredibly grouchy and emotionally sensitive today that I am almost afraid to write for fear of what will come out, but as a little mouse put it, “my public needs me.”  It is probably more likely that I need my public’s prayers.  The emotional strain must be starting to take it’s toll. 

    Sunday night I played a piece for special music that was very difficult to play. 

    I cried. 

    Monday I took the kids to Wal-Mart to get family photos and a three month picture of Caleb.  We used Dan’s jacket and hat as props. 

    I cried again. 

    Today I was already on edge and then I decided to go pick up a couple of groceries.  Maranatha (2) was quite tired and whined the whole way through the store, they all wanted to drive the cart, small aisles, small cart (only holds baby and one more and barely any groceries), too many kids and then to top it all off, Dassy (3) STEALS a lollipop from the store and tries to walk out the door!! 

    I did the only safe thing I could think of . . you guessed it . .

    I cried. 

    I did manage to hold it in till after Dassy got a partial scolding (we will finish that conversation later when Mom is a bit more rational and less inclined to do something drastic), and we were on our way home.

    Unfortunately, not once during those crying sessions have I felt comfortable just letting it all out.  So the emotions are still there boiling away, just waiting for me to lift the lid.  And it all just hurts so bad that I just keep putting the cork in the volcano and hoping that someone will turn off the heat so that I can deal with things when I am a little cooler.