Saturday, January 23, 2016

Surgery Post #3

Oh my word.....I'm getting there!  Thursday marked 1 month from surgery!!  Now the good news is I'm now basically a professional scooter driver and my energy has almost returned to normal range.  I am like totally pain free and starting to be able to function in some household tasks pretty well!  Whew!  It has been a journey!

The big news from last week is that I did finally venture out for a drive.  On Thursday I even took the 4 youngest out to run errands.  It took forever, but it felt good to be able to run around with the kids and get some things done! 

My biggest complaint these days are itchy skin, hairy legs, and cracking peeling dry skin on my foot and leg.  I think this can all be cured in a few more weeks with a nice bath, a razor, some good lotion, a professional pedicure and I might even need a massage!  I'm pretty sore! 

So the cast is coming off IN 10 more days!!!!  That will be a happy moment.  As long as the x-rays look good I will be upgraded from a cast to a walking boot and from a scooter to a walker!  Then if all goes as planned 5 more weeks and I will be in my shoes with a brace and orthotic and ready to walk and start PT!  Things are definitely looking up!

Everything around here, with the exception of me, is still moving quickly!

Randy is still running.  He is still loving his job.  He's been super great taking care of me and the house. 

The snow has been nice.  It has kept Andrew home!  He starts his day about 5:30, by heading to the pool to swim for an hour before school.  Spends his day at school.  Comes home and has dinner and then heads back to the pool for more practice, most nights.  When he gets home he's hungry and tired!  He's such a hard worker and I'm so proud of him.  Still anxiously waiting to hear from his schools.  Senior year over halfway done!

Sophia has been bitten by the swimming bug.  She started out swimming for more social reasons but now she loves the sport.  She has gotten so much stronger!  She not only loves swimming, she loves her big brother.  One of her favorite parts of the day is riding to and from night practice with Andrew.  She's gonna miss him!

Jackson is an absolute giant and his favorite things to do include jumping on the trampoline with Daddy, watching Steelers and Duke with the boys, and throwing the baseball with Andrew and Randy.  He asked last week if when Andrew leaves for school could we please adopt a little boy?  Uhm....No.  I do think I will need to make an effort to have some boys over for him to hang out with!  Too many girls in the house for his taste!

Lydia is still a busy little bee with clogging, piano, and gymnastics.  She still has energy left to burn and has taken up running like her Daddy.  She ran 2 miles around the circle in front of our house last week and liked it so much she did it again the next day and the next.  She is very driven and likes to be busy.  She is also VERY organized and LOVES to plan.  Her favorite part of her birthday is planning it.  Her favorite part of vacation is making a minute by minute schedule.  She is a girl after my own heart. 

Audrey is CrAzY.  She is so funny.  She loves to do stand up routines for us in the evenings after dinner.  She really makes me laugh.  She loves her dog and pictures of herself.  She is a total people person and what I imagine Randy would be like if he were a girl!  So much fun!  She still loves to be held and to snuggle.  Only problem is it is getting harder and harder to hold her!  One thing that has been a particular blessing to us in the past weeks is her love of washing dishes.  Our dishwasher broke, along with everything else we own: our closet rod, our water heater, our microwave, Andrew's car, my foot.....seriously everything.  Little Audrey has proved a faithful little dishwasher.  What a blessing to our family!

Friday, January 15, 2016

Unbelievable.....REPOST From January 16, 2013

Wow.....all I can say is wow!  This week was a tough one.  Saying goodbye to Granny was hard, but I was not at all prepared for today.  As we were driving to the funeral, I got a call from my sister.  She was acting weird.  She asked where we were?   When were we going to be at the church?  Who was with me?  Was I driving?  Finally....I said, "What is going on?"  Her reply was unbelievable.  She said Papa was found dead in his yard this morning.  What?  I wasn't hearing her right.  I just sat next to him on the couch a few hours ago.  He just teased me about how I told everyone I was his favorite.  He just told the whole crowd of extended family about how beautiful my family was.  He just said he loved me.  He can't be dead.  He said last night he was planning to live to be a 110.  So much for man's plans!

What happened?  He had walked to his car and driven down to the end of the road to get his paper as was his morning routine.  He had gone back inside.  His paper was on the table.  Then he had walked back outside.  Apparently to get his keys which were on his car seat.  His walker was standing beside him on the sidewalk.  No trauma.  His walker didn't topple.  No struggle.  Just laying on the grass dead.  The first responders say it was probably a heart attack......I'd say a broken heart.

He loved Granny.

 He's loved her for over 67 years.  She was his world.  I never heard them argue. I'm sure they did.....but that was not the tone of their relationship. They went through some dark days.  They lost a son.  They lost two grandchildren.  They had financial hardships.  They moved from everything and everyone they knew and cobbled together a life, a home, a family.   I always heard them speak lovingly of each other.  They built each other up.  They were not perfect but their love was special.  Unique.  Rare.  It really is God's mercy that they are together again.  They really wanted to celebrate their 67 anniversary is later this month.....and we thought they wouldn't be able to.  They will.  I bet Granny was surprised to see him there!

I can see God's hand and his goodness all over this situation.  He is so real.  He cares about the details of life.  I am sad.  I loved my Papa.  I was so proud of him.

He was a war hero.  He was bigger then life to me.  He was faithful to the end.  He spent every single night with Granny, while she was in the hospital and hospice.  And we are talking months not weeks.  He slept in the hospital recliner....and later at hospice he had a cot beside her bed.  That is love.  He gave up his comfort to be with his beloved.  As the minister said today, and I have often thought, Nicolas Sparks had nothing on my Granny and Papa's love story.

Papa was a hard worker.  He loved his family.  He was so proud of his children.  He thought Mama and Tommy hung the moon.  He loved when his great-grandchildren would give him hugs.  He adored his grandchildren.  Each and every one of us.  I told everyone when I was a little girl that I was his favorite.  My cousins would get so mad at me.  He loved to tell that story.  He told it about 5 times last night!  I snuggled up right beside him and I drank it up.  I cherished it.  I didn't know it would be my last time in his arms.  I felt like his favorite.  But the truth is we were all his favorites.  He loved us all the best.  My heart aches.  I am grieving.

I hurt thinking about my Mama.  She doesn't have a Mama and Daddy here anymore.  I can't even imagine.  What do you do without a Mama and a Daddy?  I know the truth she would speak.  You run to Jesus.  He is her father.  You find shelter in his wing.  You celebrate the time you had with them.  You grieve and you hope.  My Mama said today, "and by hope I mean assurance".  YES!  So glad Mama knows the truth.  People said today, this is too much.  It is a lot.  But the truth is God measured it out.  He portioned it out.  He allowed it.  He is good.  Life is hard.  It is painful.  Mama has said many times: great sorrow is evidence of great love.  So yes, the sorrow tonight is great.....but the love they showered over us in this lifetime was also great.  Very great.

Thankful for the prayers.  Thankful for the legacy Granny and Papa lived out over my entire life. Thankful for their daughter who is a product of such love, hard work, faithfulness.  She is their child.  Grateful for God's mercy.

 I love the song Blessings and I can't help but think of the lyrics:

'Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
And what if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You're near
What if my greatest disappointments
Or the aching of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can't satisfy
And what if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are Your mercies in disguise

This hurts.  This is sad and will take time to process but this is the end of a beautiful love story that I watched play out over my lifetime.  Sad to see this chapter end.....but so glad the next chapter is so much better!  It really is a happy ending.  It just hurts to say goodbye.  Like I said about Granny though, it is just a goodbye for now!

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Surgery Update #2

Before reading....please know that this post has gross foot pictures and are fairly you many not want to continue.

You have been warned!

Well let me just say I have turned a MAJOR corner since my last post!  I am not in much pain anymore!  I am much more mobile!  I am feeling soooo much better!

The pain has subsided gradually since around January 2.  I am on no pain killers, aside from the occasional Tylenol.   Praise the Lord! 

My mom drove me to my follow-up appointment on Tuesday and I had my initial cast removed....

I was pretty freaked out by what I saw....Feel free to stop reading here!

YUCKY!  You're Welcome.  I warned you!

This is where they added the plate to the top of my foot.  It is itchy and tender.

Evidently this is where he snipped the tendons in my leg to lengthen them. There is one small cut on each side.  I feel a lot of stretching and a pulling in my calf area where this was lengthened.

This is where they added bone, cut the heel bone, and put in the screw.  It is a little traumatized and where I have experienced the most pain.

I'm pretty bruised up and I'm very bandaged up, but I am definitely on the mend!

The appointment involved removal of stitches, changing cast, review of the surgery and time for questions and answers with doctor.  He also explained  the next step in recovery.

The next step is similar to the last.....four weeks in this cast, which is MUCH more comfortable then the last cast!   I'm still completely non-weight bearing.  The good news is I do have a little more energy each day and no more pain!

Unfortunately, I did take a tumble on Wednesday evening.  I was hopping down the stairs to go to church.  On the last step we had a loose step.  I didn't fall but commented to Randy it was loose.  I think I was not focusing and I jumped off the last step to the ground and I banged my injured ankle into the ground.  It hurt, badly.  Fortunately Randy was right there and kept me from completely falling.  I twisted myself pretty badly and had a wrenched knee and back but after a day of rest and some extra Tylenol I am doing fine.  Trying to be very careful.  AGH!

On another note I just want to say I am feeling VERY loved!  My family has been well fed and that has been a humongous blessing to me!  I have been absolutely spoiled!  Goodies, like scones and coloring books and M&M's and scooter bling, from my buddies.  Visits from my friends.  Waited on hand and foot by Randy, Mama, and the kids!  Y'all know how to make a girl feel loved!  I have a friend who got my kids to co-op and taught my class for me!  Another friend watched my kids between co-op and church.  My mom, who has been and angel, ran Sophie to a last minute orthodontist appointment to have a bracket fixed.  One friend even brought some liquid Tylenol by for my kids when I ran out and couldn't get to the store!  I LOVE my people!

I am starting to go out a little this week.  I've been to church and to swim meets and to the doctor and Target and ridden around on errands with Randy.  Next week I may try to drive.  I am very nervous about the thought of leaving the house without Randy or Andrew, but I think between Sophie and I we can probably handle it!  We shall see.  That is the goal for the week.  Slowly getting back into the swing of things!

It has been difficult to be so immobile.  I feel pretty useless.  I am a goer and a doer.  I am not a sitter around-er.  It is hard to watch my house be so messy.  Even though my mom cleaned it top to bottom and my kids are constantly doing little jobs I assign to them and Randy is doing a great job to keep things running.  It just takes non-stop attention to keep it somewhat presentable when there are 7 people and a  big dog living in a space.  I am unable to give it that attention.  So I'm having to just accept the state of our house and it is more difficult then I thought.  The worst part is I feel good and I want to do things, I just can't. 

Our pastor has said several times in the last months that the value of a human is that they were created in the image of God, not in what they can do and contribute.  Babies and the elderly are not less valuable because they can't contribute as much.  I am constantly reminding myself of this truth, because I just can't do that much!  This is hard for me.  I like to work.  I like to accomplish.  I like tasks....So just being is hard.  I think this is exactly where the Lord has me right now though, because there are lessons for me to learn as I sit and as I wait upon the Lord.

Thankful for progress every single day!