Thursday, July 31, 2008

My Baby is SEVEN Today!!!

Where to begin...I guess with today. Blaine's 7th birthday is today! I cannot believe how quickly it all goes by. When you have a baby, everyone says "Enjoy them when they're little, because before you know it..." Well, I am here to say that it's so true! In so many ways, my kids seemed to be babies forever (maybe it's because they're a mere 14 months apart!!!), but in other ways, it went by way too fast. I do like sleeping through the night though :). Blaine is so excited about his birthday. He has been referring to himself as "the birthday boy" all week. Tonight, we are going to CiCi's for dinner and then, Shankz- black light miniature golf per his request. It should be a lot of fun. Brandon's parents are coming in tomorrow (for the weekend!) and my mom is coming in on Saturday for the birthday bash. I am so excited. I love it when we get to have company, especially our families!!!

As for me, I've been feeling pretty good the last couple of days, but taking it VERY easy. Today will be the test, I have to grocery shop and that has historically been bad news.

This house is still here. No one has even "seen" it since May 22. I'm frustrated. We reduced our price a month ago and added an incentive. Still, no one. I'm really hoping something will happen this weekend (but not during the party!). The house (our dream house) we wanted, but was a little out of our price range, was reduced again this week! That makes the total reductions, since it's been on the market, $170,000! This reduction alone was $56,000! Yes, you read that right. It is now affordable for us and it just seems too good to be true (it may be if this house doesn't sell!). I'm really hoping!

I'll leave you with this. This is what I woke up to on Saturday morning...

Yes, that is my husband (the "I am so totally awesome, you can't contain it." version) standing in front of the bounce house, that he brought in to blow up, in our living room!

Here he is again with it blown up and very proud of himself.

The kids loved it!

The "perfect" addition to our living room!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Feeling Awful

Well, it's official: I feel awful. I went to my orthopedic surgeon yesterday. I told him that the steroids last week seemed to help, but as soon as I was done, the pain came back. I could barely move for him. He examined my reflexes and decided it was time for another MRI. He wants to see if anything has changed since the last one and then decide where to go from there. I only have two options left: epidural injections (I've tried those before with no success, but depending on the MRI, I may have a better chance with them now.) or surgery. I had the MRI yesterday (after waiting three hours!). It was absolutely excruciating laying on that hard board for 35 minutes! All I could do was pray for strength and endurance the entire 35 minutes! Then, the rad tech acted very strange afterwards, saying, "Don't be surprised it they call you and ask you to come in. I just wanted to give you a heads up." Now, I'm a little concerned especially since my doctor is on vacation until the 4th of August. I go back on August 8th to discuss the results and decide which route we are going to go. I'll keep you posted. For now, he gave me another pack of steroids, but I'm going to try not to start those for a couple of days. Blaine's birthday is next week (which I have not even planned) and I really want to feel good for that. Oh, and I want our house to sell! We really need to be closer to people who can help us right now. I don't know what the deal is, but someone needs to buy this house! Well, I'm off to bed (again). It's the best option right now...

Thursday, July 24, 2008

It's Raining (literally)!

It's been raining since very early this morning and doesn't look like it's going to let up. I love the rain and we haven't had enough lately. I'm going to sit here and enjoy it.

Brandon got off to Dallas just fine this morning. He decided last night that he would reschedule his flight for next week and go ahead and drive today, just in case he needed to be back for me. When I was awakened by the thunder and rain during the night, I was concerned about that decision, but he did just fine and it may be for the best since his plane may have been delayed due to the weather.

I'm really going to miss him tonight (at least it's only one night again). As bad as I was feeling last night, we laid in bed and reminisced about the "Great Purple Crayon in the Dryer of '03". That story is only one of the reasons Heather hate purple crayons! The best part of it was the fact that when I went through my giant load of light colored, dressy clothes and found them covered with purple polka dots, the large spot of melted purple wax (indicating from whence the purple crayon originated) was on the pocket of a pair of Brandon's dress khakis! There was the evidence, staring me down in plain purple: my husband, not my three or even two year old, was the reason the purple crayon was in the dryer! I'm really glad we can laugh about it now.

Anyway, I'm feeling pretty rotten. I'm taking it way easy. I think we have enough food and clean clothes to get us through the next couple of days so, I'll be spending my day sitting or laying. My kids are so good to me. They really step up and help when they know I'm not feeling well. I am so proud of them and thankful! Later, taters!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Not good :(

My back hurts again and now, I'm sad again. Add to it that Brandon will be out of town the next couple of days and this may be a "perfect" storm. I'm not sure how we're going to handle this, but I'm sure it will be okay. Just yesterday I felt so good that I was contemplating canceling my doctor's appointment for Friday. I decided to wait and see how today went. Good thing. Today, the pain medicine is taking the edge off, but I have a feeling that I will be laid up tomorrow. Pray for me. Oh, and sorry for being so gloomy!

Monday, July 21, 2008

A Quick Update ('cause I'm supposed to be busy)

I am feeling really great (other than the issues that accompany the 'roids)! This morning I took the kids and we met Rachel and her girls for some bike riding, splash fun, and a picnic. It was nice, but hot.

Tomorrow our home is on the "Realtor Tour" from 10am-2pm so, not only do I have a ton of cleaning to do, I have to be out of the house for the day tomorrow. I think I'm going to take the kids shopping for school clothes. I'm sure they will complain, but I should do it before it gets too close and Aubrey has barely anything that fits. That girl grows like none I've seen! I'm very ready to be done with all this house stuff, either way. I don't know why I do this to myself. I think I just really love houses, the excitement of moving, and the feeling of having someplace new. There's something wrong with me :)

Well, I'm out. Time for laundry, floors, and bathrooms. Maybe I'll take a nap first...

Sunday, July 20, 2008

I ♥ Brandon

I cannot even begin to tell you how much I love my husband and how it makes me feel to see him leading worship on Sunday mornings. He was born to be a worship leader and no matter what we have to sacrifice (he's not giving up his "day" job, but it is a huge time sacrifice), we will. God wants him right there; I want him right there! That's all I wanted to say right now. More tomorrow...
Did I mention he has gorgeous eyes? Oh, and he took me to the LSU BCS National Championship game?!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

His joy comes with the morning...

Today is a new day. Last night was pretty awful. I was in terrible pain and then around 8:30 pm, everything changed. Suddenly my back no longer hurt and my legs felt terrible! The best I can describe was it felt like I had cement blocks stacked from hip to toe on both legs. Dr. Williamson had told me awhile back that my disc would eventually rupture. It was bulging pretty badly on MRI and putting a lot of pressure on my already messed up nerves. He said when this happened my back would feel wonderful, but my legs would kill me. I think it finally blew. Well, I had a miserable night; between the leg pain and the 'roid rage, I got no sleep. I had decided I was going to do all I could to get to Dr. Warnell's Memorial service today and laid there all night thinking "How am I going to do this? I need to go to that service!" I pulled myself up when my alarm sounded at 7:45 am and guess what!!! NO pain!!! Nothing, nada- for the first moment in 8 very long days and after no sleep! I got ready, brought the kids to Rachel (a God send, by the way), and headed to Kingwood to meet the office crew and head to the Memorial. I am thankful beyond words... I was so blessed by Dr. Warnell's family. He was a wonderful son, brother, uncle, father, husband, doctor, and most importantly, amazing man of God. This is the first funeral type service I have ever attended that left me longing for Heaven! I left there feeling so much better, still very sad, but better and rejoicing for the life that Dr. Warnell led and the eternity he gets to spend with God! It was awesome! The world lost an amazing and compassionate doctor and to us, it seems too soon, but to God it's the perfect timing. So today, I am thankful for everything God gives and takes away- whether it be someone we love or our pain. I am going to be thankful for feeling good in this moment, however long it lasts...

For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for a lifetime; Weeping may last for the night, But a shout of joy comes in the morning.
Psalm 30:5

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Up and Running (well, not literally)

I have decided to re-enter the blogging world. I was very active (and popular, if I do say so myself) on blogger up until a couple of years ago. We moved to Houston and for some reason blogger began to reject me and my posts so, I gave up. Well, I have finally decided to start over. It's hard to believe it's been two years that we've been here. Time has flown by. Where to begin?

The kids are growing like bad weeds; Blaine will start 2nd grade next month and Aubrey, 3rd. Brandon started a new job here, two weeks ago. He loves it and it was a huge step in the right direction for his career. He is also leading Worship at our church- Summer Creek Baptist. We have found a wonderful place to get connected and could not ask for a better church family. They rock! We have our house up for sale and are looking to move to a different school zone (you know, we don't stay put too long. That gets boring!). So far, nothing. We are going to give it a couple more weeks and if it hasn't sold, we'll settle in for the winter and perhaps try again next Spring.

Now, to the not so good part. This week has been hard. My back had been doing pretty well. For those of you who don't know and some of you who do,but don't really have a good explanation, I was diagnosed a year ago with "bilateral foraminal stenosis" and a "bulging, degenerative disc" at the L5-S1 level. It is a chronic debilitating condition that is very rare and pretty much unheard of in someone my age. The only real solution is a lumbar fusion which, as I am sure you can guess, is not a pleasant surgery. They take a bone graft from the pelvis and fuse it, along with rods and screws, to the disc needing to be fused. In my case, that is L5-S1. The recovery is LONG- 12-18 months! I would have a bad day here and there, nothing I could not handle, and so we decided to put the surgery off as long as possible. I have children to raise! My orthopedic surgeon predicted, at that time, that I would be unable to walk within 18 months. Well, here we are a year later, and I was doing great! Maybe once a month, I would wake up sore and stiff, take it easy, and be up and at 'em by the next day. That all changed last Thursday, I woke up stiff and by 3pm, was on the floor screaming in pain and unable to move my left leg. My kids were in hysterics (Blaine thought I was having a baby!). Poor Brandon got a call on his cell from Aubrey saying "Mom is on the floor and she is having a crisis! You have to get home!" He wasn't far behind. Today is day seven and I am still very uncomfortable and every now and then, in so much pain, death sounds good. I am only getting up and walking when absolutely necessary: a child needs something, bathroom break, food, etc. Even at that, there are times when it is physically impossible to walk- either my left leg will not work or (the more excruciating option) I feel like I am being electrocuted with every single step. Well, I finally got in to my ortho this morning. He is one of the rare ones, the NOT knife happy kind of surgeons. He is really rooting for me and hoping I can hold out as long as possible (The surgery is not always successful and even when it is, it may only have a 15-20 year life. So, every year I can hold out, the better off I am in the long run.). He put me on steroids to hopefully cut down some inflammation and a different pain medicine. I will go back a week from Friday and see what's happened. If I am not better, we'll, more than likely, schedule. I don't want to do this. I am SO scared! My last surgery in 2004 was a complete disaster. I almost didn't make it through and this is far more invasive and serious. Right now, I'm homebound (my poor kids!) and can't even do things that I would normally not want to do, like housework. I really don't know how much more I can take. It's very hard and scary to be unable to walk, bend, or sit. I need a healing! I know it might not happen and that God may have other plans- plans that seem awful to me, but in the end will bring Him glory and will prosper me. I am SO emotional. I am crying at the drop of a hat (I cried for poor Dr. Williamson this morning; he was very sweet!) and that is very unlike me.

Then, Monday I got the call that the doctor I was working for (up until January, but still remained close to), passed away of an apparent aneurysm Sunday night. I am so sad. It was completely unexpected. He was such a good man and doctor and VERY young, in excellent health. Please pray for Dr. Warnell's family, especially his five year old son, Colbie. I remember when he got lost on his way to have this picture taken. I was attempting to give him directions on his cell phone (I had no idea where he was either!), and he stumbled upon the place, late, and stressed. In true Dr. Warnell form, he was still as nice as ever, laughing at me and himself and I'm sure smiling from ear to ear.

Dr. Charles Warnell
You will be so missed!

I know that in spite of everything, we are beyond blessed and this is just a detour. I'm clinging to that.

Well, all that rambling to say: I'm back (at least in the blog world)! And a special thanks to Angela, who over the past two years has not stopped asking me to start blogging again! I love you, girl!