12-08-19 Swallowing Hole

“My swallowing hole tickles!” Baby E informed us the other day.

“Do you mean your throat?” I asked as I pointed to his throat.

“No. Inside.” Baby E pointed inside his mouth. “My swallowing hole!!”

FYI… We are officially renaming ‘throats’ as ‘swallowing holes.’

That is all.

12-06-19 Cleared!

“Anything you do is going to hurt, but you won’t hurt anything by doing it,” the doctor informed me at my appointment yesterday. “If you wanted to run the Boston Marathon tomorrow, I would be ok with that. It would hurt, but you could do it.”

In other words, I’m cleared for just about everything, save bench pressing 200 lbs.

I went over a lot of things with the doctor yesterday and I’m still processing much of it. They have to monitor my blood for a couple of weeks to make sure everything goes back to normal, but so far so good.

I am so incredibly thankful that this has been a relatively smooth recovery!

12-04-19 Derailed

Tomorrow morning is my follow up appointment with the surgeon. I don’t think I am going to learn anything I don’t already know, but I am a little nervous to hear it from his lips.

I can’t believe it has been two weeks. I’m still dealing with a lot of fatigue. It doesn’t take much to wear me out. I’m sore, especially if I move too quickly. Surprisingly they decided not to make an incision on the side of my abdomen where the rupture happened, instead opting to enter from the other side. So ironically the area where the rupture actually occurred doesn’t hurt at all. The opposite side however is still rather sore, not the incision, but everything inside. The scars aren’t looking too bad, and the bruising is starting to fade.

I’m still trying to wrap my mind around how quickly this all happened, how fast my day to day life got derailed and put on hold. I really feel blindsided. But I’m thankful it wasn’t worse and I’m grateful for the continued love and support of the people around me.

12-03-19 A Look Back

I was looking through old photos this evening when I first saw this one, I thought it was Tim holding Baby E, but no, it’s Big E. This was during our farmhouse days- I recognize the chair and the green wall.

One of our neighbors when we lived in the farmhouse was a woman in her nineties that had actually been born in our house. She would see us taking walks in the evenings and she would invite us into her home. She would talk and talk, telling us the history of her family and the area, while game shows played on the tv in the background. Nearly every wall in her house was covered with pictures and news articles about President Obama and his family. She was so proud to have a black president.

As she talked about our farmhouse she would get a glint in her eye, she was so proud of it. The house was originally just two rooms. Her family had always been a landowning black family, which was rare during her childhood, and the house has been a place of pride. Her parents raised seven children in those two rooms, eventually adding the two rooms above, to make a total of four rooms. You could tell where the original wood stove had been in the house, and the back stairs were just the type you would imagine from a house built in the early 1900’s. As the years went on they added more rooms which eventually included indoor bathrooms, a dining room, and a basement kitchen. By the time we moved in, it was a mishmash of decades that exuded character from every corner.

The house sat on a lovely hill, and our neighbor would talk about the roaming farmland that had sloped away from it. Not much was farm land any more, and houses dotted the landscape. Everyone in the small neighborhood were descendants of that family except for us. It was fun to listen to them recount their memories of visiting their grandmother in that house growing up.

I never loved the house. It was a challenging place to live, but I always appreciated its history and stories. It was unusual and had character. We spent two years in that little farmhouse, which my kids remember as someplace magical. We had a small garden. We took long walks nearly every night. We greeted the stone animals that populated the ends of the driveways. The kids sped down the grass hill in their Cozy Coupes.

I brought Baby E home from the hospital to that house. For that reason alone, there I have a soft spot for it.

Well, I should probably draw this ramble to a close. Tim just popped up in bed and asked me if it was time to get up. “No honey, it’s time to go to sleep!”

Thank you again for your prayers and well wishes. I’d like to say that each day gets better, but this journey isn’t very linear. Some days are better than others. Today was an okay day. Tonight I’m incredibly grateful for the people God has brought into my life that I can reach out to, without embarrassment or shame, when I’m have a rough moment (or hour or day. ) They are truly a godsend.

12-02-19 The Dollhouse and "I Love You Food"

A couple of months ago I was scrolling down Facebook Marketplace when I came across a curbside pick up. I had been looking for large bins we could store containers in at the shop when I spotted the picture. Alongside a few large bins, I noticed a dollhouse. I figured since it was a curbside pick up, it wouldn’t be there by the time I got there, but I was more interested in the large plastic containers anyways.

To my surprise, the dollhouse was still sitting there when I pulled up. It was dusty and a little musty, but I got it into the back of the car. When I got it home, I brought it inside, and it has been waiting in a corner for me to get around to cleaning it. Today was finally that day. I wiped and scrubbed it down, washed the furniture that came with it, and made sure it was ready for the kids.

The kids, who have been eyeing it for weeks, couldn’t have been more excited to place it in the middle of the living room floor and play with it. It entertained them for hours and it brought a smile to my face.

Tonight we had the last of our “I Love You Food.”

“I Love You Food” is something that I implemented the last time we were in this situation. When I came home from the hospital last time, our church family and MOPS group surrounded us with love and showered us with meals. It was one of the things that made recovery a little bit easier, knowing I could focus on healing and not stress about getting meals prepared. I remember one of the first nights someone came over and brought food and the kids weren’t thrilled at what came. (Tim and I loved all the food, but the kids were picky.) I sat them down and we had a serious discussion about “I Love You Food” and I explained to them that the food was a gift, that it was an incredible blessing, and that we would eat anything that was brought over, because it was “I Love You Food.” After our talk, they sat down and ate their meal without complaint. During the following weeks, when the kids would suspiciously eye food, all I had to say was that it was “I Love You Food” and they would settle down and eat it. They were surprised to learn how much they enjoyed the new flavors and dishes.

This past week we were once again blessed, this time by our new church family, with an abundance of “I Love You Food.” As I set food in front of the children each evening, I reminded them where each meal came from, who brought it, and that it meant they cared and loved us. The kids would smile and get excited to learn what each new meal was and once again they were surprised to discover new foods that they enjoyed! It was all delicious!

I can’t express how thankful we are for the outpouring of love and support. It has helped to soften the edge of a truly horrible experience knowing that so many people have prayed and provided for us. It is always a beautiful thing to see the body of Christ in action, and our family has seen if first hand these past few weeks. Thank you again for your kindness. Thank you for your prayers. We love you.

12-01-19 Twelve Years

When Tim bent down on one knee in the middle of the Brooklyn Bridge during a torrential downpour to ask me to be his wife, I had little concept of how that would actually play out. I threw my arms around him as I said yes, excited to be starting out lives together.

Twelve years after we said “I do,” I can still look back with confidence that God chose the right man to walk through life with me.

Happy 12 Years, my love!

11-30-19 Nothing

I have spent the better part of an hour staring at this screen and I have precious little to show for it. For all the emotion I felt yesterday, today I feel numb. No energy. No creativity. Nothing.

So tonight I will graciously accept defeat and head to bed. Goodnight sweet friends.

Thank you for your continued prayers.

11-29-19 A Grieving Day

Some days are easier than others and today was not one of them. Today was a handle with care day. It was a tear-stained face-cry into my husband’s arms kind of day. Today was a grieving day.

I had several difficult interactions today, that I think individually, on a good day I could have weathered just fine- but today I didn’t have it in me, so when they came, they clobbered me.

I keep reminding myself to be patient- with my mind and my body. It’s been just over a week and there’s still more grieving and healing to come. There’s no magic switch to make it stop, it’s one step in front of the other, leaning on the Lord and the people I love.

Thank you for your continued prayers.