It has been almost a year since I last posted. So much has happened and it's all relevant so I'll try to catch you up.
January was pretty quiet while we awaited the birth of our third child. The pregnancy was complicated, but his arrival couldn't have been easier unless someone else had done it for me! On the doctor's end of things, the two vessel cord was wrapped around my little guy's throat AND had a knot in it. This is one child who was supposed to be born. He's gorgeous and no ill effects from his birth, praise God.
Then, about a month after he was born, we went to his pediatrician with some concerns about his spitting up. I asked for prayers from the group of prayer warriors God has gathered (if you'd like to join that worldwide group, let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org) for wisdom in knowing what was up with the little one. One of my friends emailed back that it sounded like what her grandson had gone through. Something called pyloric stenosis. Do a google search to find out about it if you're curious. We saw the pediatrician at 1:45 PM, by 4 PM we had a bed at the hospital and at 10:30 PM my one month old was undergoing emergency surgery. That next month was spent trying to get his little system back on track, but again we had to praise God for His wisdom and mercy.
That takes us to the end of April/beginning of May. Mother's Day was approaching. I had gotten my card ready to send to my mom. At 2 AM my phone rang. It was my sister-in-law telling me my brother had shot himself. Many things I've prepared for in my life. That's not one of them. For the next few hours details emerged and the family rallied. The day I flew up to PA would have been my brother's 44th birthday. Consolation came only in knowing that my brother was saved prior to the mental illnesses that caused his paranoia. Watching my five year old nephew try to understand where his daddy was broke my heart. Holding my siblings/mother/father, seeing the shell of my brother. My mother telling me she should NOT have to bury a child. Sights and sounds I'll never forget as long as I live.
June begins the season of having my children home from school. Five hours a week of therapy for my daughter took up a majority of my time, as well as desperately trying to get my youngest on a schedule. It really was hard with him for some reason and my lack of sleep, frustration and plain exhaustion really took a toll.
During this time, December to July, a contract for our company was in the process of being worked out. Things got to the point of putting signatures on the pages and then...silence on the other end. Nothing. God is God and we figured He brought us the opportunity and He'd be the One to deal with it.
July started work on my annual writers' conference. Normally I would have been working on it from January of February, but life got in the way. So, I came in really late and played catch up. My oldest brother underwent testing for a heart condition. He's only 47.
August brought the possiblity of my oldest sister having very late stage cancer of the ovaries. A few weeks of testing and whatnot before surgery in early September. They found NOTHING, praise God.
And now, my own medical issues come back around. The fibroid which grew during my pregnancy has not shrunk. I'll be having a hysterectomy on November 2nd to remove it and my uterus.
During all of this time, there were issues with my other two kids, issues with the youngest attatching to his daddy or ANYONE else besides me. My mom going through more tests for diabetes and cholesterol, having surgery on her arteries to get rid of blockages, siblings coming back into the fold.
What does all this mean? Many might say it's been a year of attacks. Many would consider this year a horrible one without any sign of hope. Many would be wrong.
You see, this year has made me cement who I believe God is. I know He's God. I know He's the Creator and in charge of everything, but did I BELIEVE He had the best plan for me? Did I truly trust His will for my life to be better than I could ask or imagine? Could my faith stand up to a year of trials and tribulations without faltering?
Yes, it could and did. I either believe God is God or I don't. I either believe He loves me more than His own life, or I don't. Either He is LORD or He's not. Either this is HIS world and all that's in it, or it's not. There is no lukewarm, there is no gray. It's very black and white. God made me put my beliefs on the line this year and I believe I've heard, "Well done, " a time or two. Has it been perfect? Not by any stretch. But I know that I'm closer now to my Daddy than I've ever been before. His still, small Voice is all I want to hear.
I'll never go through all my Savior did. I'll never have to sacrifice myself and take on the wrath of God to save the lives of such undeserving people. What little I have to deal with on this side of heaven is worth the glimpses of glory He's shown me. And I'm not going to let anything, no trials nor tribulations, take that from me.
Without Him, I am nothing. He is my everything. Is He yours?
Oh, and that contract? It got signed about a month ago. :-)