February 13, 2013 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | 1 comment
Today is my first day without chemotherapy in a year! I had an MRI and visit with my neurologist at Duke, Dr. Peters today. The tumors are stable. And, as of today, I don’t
need to take a Temador before I go to bed!!! My doctor thinks the Temador has done what it’s going to do and we need to see what the tumor cells are going to do next. So, I
will still go for an MRI every two months and if I start having more symptoms (like last time when my left leg would not walk when my brain told it to walk) then I will
either go back on the chemotherapy or we will try something else.
So, I am hopeful that I will get some energy back and maybe the dizziness will dial down a bit. To God be the glory. He has shown me mercy. I pray that He would continue to
use my life for His purpose. Thank you for praying, don’t stop!
July 1, 2012 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | 1 comment
It”s been six months since the biopsy and everything is going well. My last MRI shows that the most aggressive cells are getting hit by the chemo. I haven’t been nauseous
after taking it either! Yeah God!!!
I have been having a problem with hearing, though. It started with an infection in my good ear. Isn’t that always the way it is? I found a wonderful ENT who will be doing
lots of tests to see how my hearing problems might have something to do with my balance problems. That is awesome news!!!
We took our vacation in June which was just wonderful! Now, I am relaxing and diving into a new book club and a Charlotte Mason project. Life is good!!!
My next MRI is scheduled for the middle of August. It is right I go to NYC on the economics class trip. I am expecting to get great news and be able to fly up to JFK and
tour Wall Street with a great group of teenage homeschoolers!
My good friend, Christine is having a tumor removed next week. She has been fighting brain cancer longer than me and has been fighting with grace and hope every step of
the way. Please pray for her, her husband and her three boys. God is able.
One Chapter Ends and Another Begins
January 28, 2012 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | Permalink
Craig and I spent a few hours at Duke yesterday. We have agreed with my doctors that the best thing to do is chemo. I will start this week. It’s a low dose pill that I will
take every day. After two months, I will have an MRI. If the tumor is stable or shrinking, I will continue the chemo for 10-12 months. If the tumor has grown at all, I
will stop chemo and start radiation.
There are side effects. Nausea is most likely, though I will have other medication to help with that. I will fight fatigue and have to be very careful about catching
whatever bug is in the air, or on the faucet in the sink. It will be very important to avoid stress.
It’s an unusual feeling to finally have a diagnosis. For six years, I’ve been able to say that I have a non-cancerous tumor. As I look back, I think I took a lot of
comfort in that fact.
“Well, at least it’s not cancer.” I could say.
This is definitely a different door that has opened in my life and the life of my family. The room we find ourselves in feels like an enormous, dark cave. It’s cold and a
little lonely. The door closes behind us and then disappears. I sit down and squeeze my eyes shut and try to pretend this is not happening. I open my eyes and I am still
there. I run my hands along the walls thinking that there must be some way out, if I could just find it. There is none. I can hear my children crying. I find them and just
being able to hug them gives me hope. And I suddenly feel like someone else is in this room with us. I can’t see anything, but I know someone is there. And, I think, I hear
a voice say, “Follow me.” We hold each other’s hands so we don’t get lost and we start walking. That’s how this feels.
I will post again when I start chemo. That story should be illuminating!
PS I was thinking of an old Carmen song that goes Fear not, my child, I’m with you always. I know how to care for what belongs to me.”
The Results Are In
January 25, 2012 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | Permalink
Dr. Peters called this evening. The mass is definitely a tumor, not dead cells from radiation. It is classified as a low-grade astrocytoma. The fact that it is low grade
is very important. This means it is slow growing. It also means that it is definitely a cancer, something there that should not be there. Surgical removal is not an option
as the tumor is fully intertwined with the good cells. Radiation and chemo are options. I have an appointment with Dr. Peters on Friday.
This is the best bad news that it could be. It’s bad because it’s definitely a cancer. For six years I’ve been able to say I did not have cancer because we couldn’t know
for sure and because it hadn’t grown at all, and maybe had shrunk a bit, it was not termed cancerous. I’ve taken a lot of solace because of that situation. Now I know.
It could be worse, though. It could be high grade, which is fast growing.
So, I am slowly digesting this information. One moment is calm, the next is like the outer rim of a tornado. I cry and then I laugh. And God is right here, laughing and
crying with me. His love knows no end. That doesn’t mean my life will be champagne and roses and there’s God running in front of me with a big shield, deflecting all bad
things that are coming my way. In this world we will have trouble, but I (God) have overcome the world.
I should have more information after my appointment on Friday.
My kids, my mom and my husband have been doing a yeoman’s job feeding and caring for me. And my friends have been bringing food and sending beautiful cards. Thanks so much!
Biopsy, Check. Recovering…
January 19, 2012 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | 1 comment
It was a nail bitter up until the last second. I went for another MRI on Thursday to check and double check that I could still have the biopsy. I was on steroids which had
a small possibility of changing the mass and making a biopsy too risky. I was sitting in pre-op convincing myself that I was going home when Dr. Freidman walked in and said
it was a go. I cried a little before the drugs kicked in. I think I said something funny, too.
Next thing I know, I am in ICU with three IV’s. I was in ICU for 24 hours and then moved to a room and I came home on Sunday. The surgeon said he got a really good sample
and the toxicology was already starting to come in. He said he doesn’t make any diagnoses until he gets a complete report. So, we are waiting and I am recovering.
Recovering is a little more complicated than I had hoped it would be. I was thinking a few days of rest would be good enough. It’s taking a little bit more than that,
though. Now I am hoping that I can brush my hair on my own by Monday. The good news is that I can feed myself, which is terribly important! LOL There are no banned foods
for me, so I have been eating popcorn every night.
Right now, my left side is weaker than before the biopsy and my right side is more numb. But, that might change as I recover. Hopefully, the neurologist, Dr. Peters will
call with results this week.
I have been able to do school a little bit with the kids. Just being able to do that is a blessing to me. The kids might even say it is a blessing for them! LOL
Thank you again for writing notes and praying. When I get a message, I try and think of a memory I have with that person and that brings me joy.
There is joy.
Sharon La Scola on January 24, 2012 at 11:37 pm
I check into your blog often and pray for you each day. I do admit to having ‘issues’ with leaving a comment – so, today is a first. To hopefully bring you a joy, I
will leave you with one of my memories: The Crazy Cropper and your Book of Me class – a warm memory and joy for me!
Sharon La Scola
Pre-op Appointment Finally Finished
January 10, 2012 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | Permalink
I am one day closer to to the Biopsy. It is scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 12, 2012. It will be a more involved than I had hoped. It will be a full blown surgery that will
last about 3.5 hours. I will be fully anesthetized, thankfully. I will spend some time in ICU until the threats of swelling and infection have passed. Then I will be moved
to a room for 1-3 days, “until Dr. Freidman says I can leave.”
I am so tired that I am having some trouble processing this. I won’t be able to see my kids right away, if at all, while I am there. This will probably be the hardest part.
I want to be able to look them in the eye and tell them how much I love them. I don’t want them to be sad or worried and I know they will, if for no other reason than I
am not with them.
This is hard. And this is just the beginning. The results of the Biopsy will bring more decisions and adjustments. God will bless me with the strength and the peace I need
even though it feels so far away right now.
When I turn my face one way, I can feel a cold, bitter wind hitting my face, burning, piercing. When I look the other way there is a calm breeze that warms my cheeks and
calms my heart. I look straight ahead and I can feel both at the same time. I can ignore neither side. But then I look up and I see, or at least feel, the presence of God.
The cold is still there and so is the warmth, and that is okay, because God is there. He is always there.
Thanks for your prayers. Please don’t stop.
January 4, 2012 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | Permalink
I was finally able to speak with Dr. Peters, my neurologist, about the PET scan. The good news: the tumor in my brain stem is completely inactive. The bad news: the mass
in my spinal cord shows active cells, possibly cancerous cells. A biopsy is the only way to discover what kind of cells are accumulating in my cervical spinal cord. Since
my symptoms are increasing in intensity, I have started taking 8mg of steroids daily. The biopsy is scheduled for January 12th. It is an outpatient procedure, but the
doctor doesn’t guarantee a one day only experience.
Since the beginning of all of this, I have asked God to take this tumor away. I am so thankful for His many blessings; for His care and concern for me and my family. He is
a Great God, a Good God, a Loving God. I believe His power will never lead me where His grace cannot keep me. I do not waver, even now.
That is not to say that I am not struggling with fear and anxiety. I can start crying faster than you can say boohoo. I have found myself staring off into space more and
more often in the past few days. I have thought about signing an “advanced directive” (Google if this is an unfamiliar term). I am less and less patient with little
annoying things in life, like when someone leaves the garage door open.
My friend, Linda Talley, called herself God’s little lamb constantly in His care. I understand what she meant. That little lamb was completely dependent on the Good
Shepherd. From being feed to having a place to sleep, to being protected against attack, the lamb’s entire existence depended on the ability of the shepherd to care for His
sheep. My Shepherd is strong and loving. He will guide, or if need be, carry me and my family through this land of peaks and valleys. He leads me up the hills to joy and
peace and He carries me through the valleys of fear and stress.
Please keep praying and sending messages. They might make me cry but I treasure every word.
PET scan today
December 20, 2011 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | 1 comment
I had my first PET scan ever today. I didn’t speak to my neurologist but I did speak with the neurosurgeon, Dr. Friedman. He said he can do a biopsy of the mass in my
spinal cord. There will be nerve damage, but Dr. Friedman expects it to be minimal. There is always a chance there will be paralysis with this procedure, but, more likely,
I will have permanent numbness on my right side. The procedure is scheduled for January 12th.
As usual, I am exhausted. As usual, I am happy and concerned. I am encouraged that a biopsy is even possible. I want to know what is there that should not be. But, there
is a part of me that doesn’t want to know. I don’t want to hear what grade it is and the chances of it taking my life. I am not thrilled to live with more restriction of
movement in my body. I like to be the one helping other people out, not the other way around. There is a little bit of pride involved there, I know.
And, as usual, God is here. He is closer to me than the air that I breathe. He sees the tears falling down my cheeks as I, slowly, put my hand in His. He knows me and the
weakness of my frame. He created me. He knows I am afraid, even as I remind myself of His mercy and His grace. Still, He loves me.
on January 2, 2012 at 11:32 pm
And the MRI says…
December 15, 2011 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | Permalink
What a long day! An MRI followed by a long wait to see my neurologist equals a very tired momma!
The good news is that the brain tumor is stable. Dr. Peters said my brain looks good (but I already knew that LOL).
The bad news. The mass in my spinal cord is growing. From what I could tell from the pictures, the mass has gotten thicker. Add to that, the weakness in my left arm and
we arrive at s0me concern.
Next step. I have to go for a PET scan and meet with Dr. Friedman about the possibility of a biopsy. A biopsy might tell us if this is radiation damage, cancerous tumor or
something else completely. Then we can look for the appropriate remedy.
So, my doctor is concerned, my mom is preparing to go to battle to fight whatever is attacking and I am somewhere in between pretending this isn’t happening and running
doomsday scenarios in my head. But, it is written God knows the plans He has for my life. They are for good and not for disaster. They are plans that bring a future and a
I appreciate and covet your prayers. God is good, all the time. I really love the comments in this forum and on Facebook. I save them in my heart.
December 12, 2011 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | Permalink
I wrote a few months ago after my last MRI. I am scheduled for another MRI this Thursday.
A new symptom has appeared and some old ones have increased in their intensity. The muscles in my left arm do not want to work. It has made eating and dressing a
challenge, indeed, since I am left-handed. It’s hard to lift or carry anything heavier than a bobby pin, or maybe the remote. If I am trying to hold something heavier than
an ounce, my wrist just fails and hangs off my arm like a swinging door. This is new.
The old symptoms, dizziness and fatigue have increased. They inch up, little by little. I can’t tell if they are actually getting worse or if I am tolerating them less and
less as the days go by.
It is hard, sometimes. I feel bad for myself when I think about how long I have been dealing with these limitations. I don’t remember what it feels like to get out of bed
ready for the day. I get up and feel like I’ve been awake for twenty hours, every morning. Feeling bad for myself usually makes me grumpy and then I have no patience with
my children. They deserve the best I have to give, so I had better snap out of it. And, God is still sitting on His throne. He has never failed me and He is not about to
do it now. Yet, it is hard sometimes.
It’s hard right now.
I appreciate your prayers.
Four month Update
August 12, 2011 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | Permalink
I had an MRI yesterday. It took longer than it used to because they take pictures of my neck now, too. Oh well. Anyway, there is no change in the size of the tumors. I
think I am going to call them Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum, for lack of a more clever moniker. As always, this is good news. And as always, I was hoping for better. It isn’t
easy to accept good news as good news when the good news you were looking for is not the same good news you heard. Follow?
The symptoms I am experiencing are not consistent with the location of the tumors, so Dr. Peters wants to make sure there aren’t any other parties going on that she should
know about. Being an overachiever, I was disappointed that I didn’t present the correct symptoms and thought for a moment that maybe I was making up the symptoms I had and missing the symptoms I should have been having. This is the result of being a first born overachiever, even brain tumor symptoms have to be perfect. Anyway, I am going to
the nerve doctor to see what, if any nerve damage has occurred. That should be fun!
That’s all the news that’s fit to print!
The Latest Dish from “As the Tumor Turns”
April 12, 2011 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | Permalink
I had an MRI on Monday night and a neurology visit today. The “mass” (it may or may not be a tumor so there is no definite name to call it, though I am trying to think of
a clever nickname. If you have any ideas, I’d love to hear them) in my spinal cord has not changed at all. The tumor in my brain has not changed at all. My neurological
abilities seem to have improved slightly as per the 15 minute examination that was performed. I remembered the three words I was given at the beginning of the exam and I
figured out how much 35 nickels equaled in dollars. These are all good things and I am thankful to God that He has blessed me with a good report.
This good report is welcomed and celebrated, even if it is not unadulterated happiness. There is still something wrong. There are things in my brain and spinal cord that
do not belong there (this reminds me of the Sesame Street song about one of those things does not belong here). I struggle with hearing loss, dizziness, numbness on my
right side and frequent headaches. I am not boo-hooing and feeling sorry for myself, well maybe a little but I am trying not to be that person. Let’s say I am not only
feeling sorry for myself but I am also trying to adjust to this reality. Into each life a little rain will fall. What I am trying to do now is decide what kind of umbrella
I am scheduled to have an MRI in two months and we’ll see what the “mass” is doing, if anything. I’ll update then and post in between if there is any other news.
Signing off from beautiful, warm North Carolina!
Here it comes again – and here I go!
February 7, 2011 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | Permalink
Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water (cue music)!
I posted last week that I woke up with numbness on my right side. I went to the ER and was happy to find out that I was not having a stroke. But I did go for another MRI to
see if the tumor was progressing. You just don’t have numbness for no reason. For good measure, the doctor had my spine imaged also.
I got a call this morning that there is another tumor on my spinal cord. It is about 7 inches long.? I am waiting to find out if it can be biopsied and maybe even removed.
Or I may need more radiation – I wonder what will happen to my hair this time!
I am, well, I really don’t know what I am feeling right now.? I told my sister that I really didn’t have time for this right now. I am very busy, you know. I have been
teaching a civics class since September and I am loving it. Our class is planning a field trip to DC in May and I need to keep working on that. Then there is schooling. I
have everything pretty well scheduled but it doesn’t take much to get behind. Have you ever tried running behind and then jumping on the back of a galloping horse?
Of course there are the book clubs that I absolutely love doing. And, I was really planning on organizing my crafts this winter. I even bought a tote! I should know in the
next few days what might happen next.
But, I do know who knows what will happen next. God knows. He not only knows, He cares. He not only cares, He can do anything. I am His child.
So, I am emotional and I don’t know what tomorrow holds. But, I will do as my Nana says, to tie a knot in the end of my rope and hang on. Please hang on with me. I am so
thankful for your prayers and comforting words.
I’ll update as I find out more.
I love you!
posted an update: 2 years, 1 month ago
I woke up this morning and my arm felt like it had fallen asleep. I did not think this unusual. I went about my business and by the time I was walking the dogs, my entire
right side felt like it had fallen asleep. I got scared and called my nurse at the Preston Robert Tisch Brain Tumor center to see if I should be concerned about this or if
I could add it to the list of annoying symptoms that are part of everyday life. The nurse called and said I should go to the Emergency Room (do not pass go, do not collect
$200). So, that is what we did. I had blood work done and a CT scan. Everything came back normal. They were looking for a bleed or other serious problem, So, now I go for
an MRI ASAP. Hopefully, that will happen tomorrow. Right now, my whole right side from the tip of my head to the bottom of my feet feel like the last fifteen minutes of
Novacaine after getting a filling at the dentist (thanks, Dad, for that analogy). I have to admit I got pretty nervous, mostly because this was so sudden and it’s been such
a long time since my symptoms have changed. But, I will assert that God is in control and He loves me and my family more than I can imagine. The trusting is a little harder
today, but that’s okay with God.
”He knows my name. He knows my every thought. He sees each tear that falls. And He hears me when I call ” (that’s part of a song and I don’t know who wrote it but it wasn’t
me) It does express my feelings right now, though. Thanks for your prayers.
posted an update: 2 years, 8 months ago
My last two scans have shown that the tumor has not grown, or shrunk. It’s just hanging out in my brain stem! My next MRI is in December. I am still dizzy and tire very
easily. But God is good all the time and I am grateful for His care and mercy for me.
On Line for the Roller Coaster
January 29, 2009 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | 8 comments
I was going to title my entry “On the Great Roller Coaster Ride” but then I thought it overkill. Too melodramatic. So, I am just waiting to see if there is a seat waiting
for me on the roller coaster.
I went to the tumor center yesterday for an appointment with the neurologist. I have a preliminary report on the unwanted brain-guest but he was going to delve a bit
further with me. Dr. V. said the tumor is stable. It has not grown. It has not shrunk. He noticed some swelling and maybe some flares which indicate cell activity. But, he
said he was looking hard for it since I was having symptoms (headaches that won’t go away), he thinks something is happening that is too small to see on the MRI. He
compared the most recent scan with one over two years ago and said there is marked improvement. He called the 2006 scan “really ugly”.
He suggested I start chemotherapy. He said it might keep the tumor from growing but it is only a small chance. It’s not certain that the tumor is becoming active. Dr. V.
says my symptoms will announce future activity but it isn’t definite that the tumor is planning on growing because my headaches are increasing.
I have opted not to start chemo yet. I am saving that as the “Hail Mary” pass when we have exhausted all other options. Now, I am on a stronger pain medication. If that
doesn’t take care of the headaches, I will start steroids (yuck) and if that doesn’t help, then I will go to chemotherapy. I am praying that the pain will just go away.
Come to think of it, I am praying the same fate for the tumor!
The headaches are not incapacitating. My head feels like a big bruise (opening for a joke here). It fades and returns on and off but it never really goes away. This is
where the concern comes into play.
So, the outcome of all of this is that we really don’t know what is coming next. I am asking for more time with my wonderful children, my loving husband, my other
supportive family members. But even more than that, I am asking that God would accomplish His will in me and through me. Use me, Lord, in all my fears and failings.You are worthy, Father. Please show Yourself powerful in my life.
I’ll update as the news comes in.
It’s Late but Happy New Year!
January 22, 2009 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | 2 comments
I had grand plans to write on New Year’s Day about my high aspirations for this new year. Title “This Year I’m Gonna” and I was going to elaborate on my fondest wishes and
best ideas. Well, that didn’t happen. Oh well, maybe next year!
Anyway, the muse didn’t offer enough for me to write about then. And I just can’t write until something hits me in the face to write about.
So, I have news that I can share. I have been getting headaches that will not go away. At first I thought it was the weather. Low pressure systems give me headaches. But,
Ibuprofen would not take it away as it usually does. We went to an MRI appointment last Friday at 10pm. That astounded me that they were still open that late but it is.
A neurologist gave an initial report that there was no growth of the tumor. He said there may be some swelling and he saw some cell activity but he said I did not have to
go on steroids (PRAISING GOD, here). I have an appointment with Dr. Friedman next week and I should know more. I am hoping I don’t need chemotherapy. I feel like that is
the “Hail Mary” pass of the tumor world and I would rather not go there. But, if it is what is necessary, then so be it.
The headache is like a bruise on my whole head. It occasionally flares up in certain spots. The drugs I have been using aren’t really touching it. The headache doesn’t land
me on my back in pain. It is just a constant thrum of pain. My dizziness, if this is possible, is gaining on me. But, I can still sit up and take nourishment, which my Nana
says is the greatest blessing when you aren’t feeling so good.
I will write again with something witty and clever when I think of something witty and clever to say. I hope it comes soon!
Almost Vacation Time
August 20, 2008 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | 6 comments
Yes, it is the last week in August but there is still time to go on vacation! This Friday begins our summer vaction! It’s a much anticipated, much needed rest and I am so
thankful it’s finally here!
I had my biannual MRI and neurology appointment last week. Repeating a good idea from last time, I went to my MRI appointment with some girlfriends and then we went out for
dinner. It was lots of fun! The next morning, Craig and I went to the Tumor Center. My appointment was at 9am. I wasn’t seen until after 1pm. It may have been a matter of
bad scheduling but I think it was also that there are so many people coming in with tumors that need lots of time with the doctor.
I am always so affected by the number of people sitting with me in the waiting room. Lots of the patients are waiting with their families and friends. This kind of
appointment requires lots of support. I always try to listen to other people talking while I wait. It isn’t any of my business, I know, but I like to find out where they
are in their journey. I feel like we’re like a fraternity and I am endlessly curious. Every time I am forced to spend a lot of time in the waiting room, I am overwhelmed by
the sadness, the hopelessness that seems to be part of this place. I want to hug each person who has tears falling down their faces. I want to tell them that there is hope.
Maybe there isn’t hope for a complete recovery of their lives before the tumor, but there is hope of eternity that is theirs for the taking. Someday, someday, I will figure
out a way to support these people. To show them the silver lining of this cloudy experience.
Well, finally, the doctor came in. He’s usually a smiley kind of person and this time his smile seemed a little bigger. He told us there is evidence of the tumor either
shrinking or becoming scar tissue. This is very good news! There was no evidence of the tumor being alive. There were no flares coming off of the tumor which says there is
no growth occurring. It will take more time and more MRI’s in the future to supplement this information but it’s a wonderful report anyway! Thank you so much, God!
My feelings are in flux right now and I don’t know how to explain them. So, I’ll just leave it here and give God all the glory for the great things He has done. Thank you,
Praying: It’s An Action Verb
July 18, 2008 in Update by Elfmom | 2 comments
I presented the ideas found in the book Praying in Color by Sybil MacBeth. I am posting the text that I gave at the Women’s Ministry Breakfast at Grace Community Church in
When my parents told their parents that they were pregnant for the first time, they all started praying. They prayed for a healthy pregnancy, for a safe delivery, for me to
know Jesus at a young age, for a mate who would be God’s perfect will for me and probably a thousand other things.
I was born on a Monday and the following Sunday my mother brought me to church. After the service, she laid me on the altar and said, “She is yours, Lord.”
When I was living a life far from fellowship with God, my mother prayed for me. I was on vacation in the Bahamas with my college friends. On our plane ride back, we hit
some stomach-churning turbulence. My best friend was convinced that this was it. I reassured her by saying, “Don’t worry, my mother prays for me. God won’t let anything
happen to me and since we’re on this plane together, we’ll be just fine.”
I prayed for a husband. I prayed for a job. I prayed for another child after I had a miscarriage. I have prayed for friends going through divorce. I have prayed when I
needed to find lost keys. When our dog ran out the door, I have prayed that He would bring her back alive. I have prayed for the salvation of my in-laws and for the safety
of my brother-in-law while he was in Iraq. I prayed for Linda and for the healing of my grandparents who are slowly succumbing to the difficulties of aging. Every night I
pray with each of my children and I try each time to pray for a different aspect of their lives and their relationship with the Almighty God.
Like many of you, I have prayed for big things and little things. I’ve prayed long, gut-wrenching prayers and the shortest one ever, “Jesus” when I think I’m about to get
into an accident or my child is falling out of some high place and headed for a broken bone. There is much to say, theologically, about prayer. How many times is it
mentioned? 109 times in the Old and New Testament of the King James version. What is the first mention of prayer? Genesis 4:26. Though mankind and God have been
communicating since God breathed life into Adam. What is the dictionary definition of praying? To ask earnestly; address or petition; ask with humility and reverence;
supplicate; to make supplication to God.
God speaks to us through the Bible. We speak to God through prayer. So what does God say about praying in the Bible?
Philippians 4:6-7 says, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God,
which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” We can go to our Father God with anything. It doesn’t matter if it’s a big thing
or a little thing. Those things in our lives which cause us anxiety are just the things to bring to the Lord in prayer. I pray with my children every time they lose a toy.
Then we praise the Lord together for answer to our prayers.
Romans 8:26 says “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that
words cannot express.” When you don’t have any more words to say. When the pain is too great. When we don’t know what to say, God has us covered. He has sent the Holy
Spirit to intercede for us in a language beyond words.
James 5:16 says “Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The fervent prayer of a righteous man can accomplish
much.” Prayer is the key that will unlock the chains that keep us enslaved in sin. Prayer brings healing.
I Thessalonians 5:16-18 says, “Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” Prayer is not
something relegated to the dinner table or saved for the last seconds of consciousness each night. While we should pray at those times, prayer is more of a flowing river of
communication between us and God.
These are just a few times praying is mentioned. Prayer is like a many-sided diamond. Every time you study it, it reveals more of itself. It is a gem that doesn’t lose any
of its attraction, no matter how many times you look at it. You could spend a long time studying it and still there would be more to discover.
Right now we’ll focus on one facet of praying: our personal relationship to prayer. The benefits of a healthy prayer life are many. But even if our prayer life is on the
south side of healthy, there are still benefits. I can think of nothing more important than talking to the Creator of the universe, the lover of our souls, the beginning
and the end in my walk as a Christian.
But even so, sometimes there are roadblocks to prayer. Here are a few of those roadblocks. I think it is safe to say all of us have encountered one or more of these at one
time or another:
Your attention wanders after “Dear Jesus”
Your prayers feel like a Christmas list instead of a love letter to God
The right words escape you and you feel the effort is hopeless
Your prayers feel inadequate or self-centered or phony
You’re bored with the same old prayers
You forget who you promised to pray for
You can’t wait for prayer time to end
You start praying and realize you’re thinking about paying the bills
Prayer feels like checking off a to-do list
You fall asleep while praying
Prayer feels like an obligation and therefore a drudgery
You feel inferior to other Christians
Then, so many times, I resort to throwing prayer darts. “Hi God. Bye God”
Then, there is the responsibility we have to pray for others. When someone asks you to pray for them, it’s not an invitation to lunch. It’s a yellow flag that is yelling,
“Help” or “Danger”. That person is opening a door that leads into a room where vulnerability, sorrow and maybe fear is trying to set up residence.
And or course, there is always guilt. It hovers over us like a helicopter. It can land anywhere in our day with a swiftness that can take your breath away. Or, it can drive
stakes into our hearts and set up camp, fully expecting to make a home there. But worry slanders every promise in the Word of God. Why worry when you can pray? Worry should
be the checkered flag that starts us on a race to prayer. It’s a place to start, not a place to stay. Worry is a dead end. It takes us to the wrong side of tracks, to a
neighborhood full of self-indulgence, paralysis and emptiness. But prayer chauffeurs us out of that place and exposes worry for what it really is; inaction pretending to be
Praying is an action verb. And since the very first thing God did in this universe was to create, I think I can’t go wrong by imitating Him. My creation is not even in the
same galaxy at what God can do, but as I am made in His image, I don’t think it is wrong to bring the gift of creativity that He has given all of us into our prayer lives.
It’s called Praying in Color. It is the invention of Sybil MacBeth. Now, I can’t tell you what flavor of Christian she is. The book she wrote to explain this method is not
a theological treatise on praying. But, I think this is a wonderful idea.
All you need is a writing instrument and paper. You can use a lot of time or just a short time. This can be done morning, afternoon or night. And it can happen anywhere.
Take out your pens, markers, crayons or pencils and use the paper in the center of the table and let’s get started.
Here are the steps (draw on white board):
Draw a shape on paper
Inside that shape write the name of the person for whom you are praying.
Add detail: this is not an exercise in artistic drawing. It is the creation of a visual image to help heart and hand remember
Enhance the drawing: each stroke is time spent praying for that person
Keep drawing until you feel you’re finished
Start with a new request, person or verse
When you are finished, spend some time looking at your drawing to allow it to make an impression on your memory.
Now this method does not preclude distraction. If you get distracted, don’t start judging yourself and get discouraged. It’s okay to notice the distraction but refocus on
praying. If the distraction comes back write a word on your page that will help you remember it later and keep praying.
Here are some more applications for praying in color:
Compost prayers – everything and the kitchen sink prayers when we dump complaints, whining, complaining and misery; those heavy burdens that God has promised to take for
us. God turns our garbage into compost, but we have to throw it out first.
Thanksgivings – count your blessings name them one by one. Count your blessings, see what God has done.
Amends – With whom do you need to make amends, to make apologies, ask for forgiveness. Write the names and the wrongs. Use the drawing as a dress rehearsal. It may not even
be possible to do this in person but if you invite God into the process of your confession clarity and cleansing can happen.
Spiritual journey – Make a map of your personal journey to God. Include the big things and the little things that happened along the way. One memory will trigger another
and you’ll remember or discover for the first time how God has been standing next to you all along.
Mentors – Who has helped you in your spiritual life? Sunday school teachers, parents, other relatives, pastors, friends may all be on that list. Are there less obvious
people who have helped you see how much God loves you?
Personal mission statement – Verbalize and visualize who you are, whose you are and what is important to you.
Healing of memories – Use praying in color to articulate old wounds, or even fresh ones, face them and then face them down.
Names for God – Let your drawing become a meditation on the way we understand and expand knowledge of God.
Scripture – Write the first verse or sentence of the verse you want to memorize. Repeat it while you add designs and color until you can say it with ease.
With a calendar – Use a blank calendar to record a prayer a day. Create an intercessory advent calendar and add a new person every day.
Let’s each choose at least one of these ideas and take 10-15 minutes to pray in color.
Praying is an action verb. Here is another way to put your prayers into action.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him
before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him” Ephesians 1:3-4
An Anniversary of Sorts
July 18, 2008 in Update by Elfmom | 4 comments
I haven’t written in over four months. Linda’s passing affected me deeply and I didn’t have anything to say. As my dad says, “I’ve used all my words.” While her death has
made me sad because I don’t get to see her and speak to her, I am so excited that she is in heaven, talking to Jesus. It also affected me on another level, though.
My deepest sadness when I think about my own mortality is how it will affect my children. Even as I type, my eyes fill with tears when I think of being apart from them. I
watched Linda’s children at the funeral service and the gravesite and all I could think of was how my children would be handling this situation. Linda’s children are
adults, yes, but I couldn’t help but think about my own children. It made my heart hurt to think they may have to sit in the front of the church while I am eulogized, but
also reminded me how important every day that I am given is to the lives of my five children. I do miss you, Linda.
Three years ago today, I was given the news that I had an inoperable brain tumor. Two days prior, I had gotten an MRI because I was incredibly tired, I was having trouble
signing my name, dragging my left foot when I walked and having a terrible pain in my head when I bent over. I had gone to the emergency room at Rex Hospital at the
insistance of the radiology technician who had read my scan. He wouldn’t say what the problem was exactly, just that I needed to go to the emergency room, immediately.
I was transferred by ambulance early in the morning to Duke University Hospital because the neurologists at Rex didn’t have the capacity to deal with my case. I needed to
be seen by one of the best neurology oncologists in the world. That made me scared. I had a 10 week old baby and four other children waiting for me at home. I was a nursing
mom. I had a lot of wonderful work in front of me. This just couldn’t be the end of the road here on earth.
I was diagnosed with a low-grade glioma lodged in my brain stem. Talk about deer in the headlights! In a moment that brought great clarity, my neurosurgeon said, “We’re
dealing with shadows here. We really don’t know how dangerous the tumor is.” This is the same neurosurgeon who removed the brain tumor from Edward Kennedy a few months ago.
The immediate concern was the swelling around the tumor. My symptoms were largely a result of that swelling and a stroke was a clear and present danger. I got on a super
high dose of steroids and a 30-day round of radiation. The swelling went down and the tumor did not grow.
Now, it’s been three years. The tumor has not grown but neither has it shrunk. I have lost some hearing and my eyesight has declined. I am constantly dizzy, like I just got
off the Tilt-a-Whirl, all day. I could go back to bed for the day by 10am. And I am constantly fighting emotions that seem to be one step ahead of my thoughts and words.
Even so, it is well with my soul. Now that I am in the thick of living with these restrictions and shortcomings, I often question God. Three years ago, it was clear to me.
God is in control and He loves me more than I can imagine. He loves my children more than I do. He has a plan for me and it is perfect. All of those things are still true.
They have not changed one little bit.
What did change were my assumptions and expectations of what my life would be like as I grew older. I often get stuck in this vortex of wanting to wring every last bit of
life out of every day and being so tired that I can’t finish a sentence without stuttering. It’s aggravating, and tiring.
So what can I do? Bring it to the Lord in prayer. That is my recourse. It isn’t a magic wand that waves itself over my life and makes everything shiny and perfect.
Sometimes, He changes my circumstances, sometimes He gives me a different perspective. In either case, He shows me He loves me so much. I don’t go to the Lord every time, but I know I should. Sometimes, my sadness and fear takes me far from the arms of my Creator. But, when I finally bring the burden of this tumor to Him, He always answers with love and grace.
Thank you, Lord, for giving me more days than I was told to expect. Thank you for walking next to me every step of this experience. Thank you for loving us. Thank you for
reminding me that You have it all under control and nothing takes You by surprise. I love you, Lord.
March 3, 2008 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | 8 comments
March already! I have had a few people encourage me, in a nice way, to please update my blog more often. This problem has plagued me since I started this endeavor. I am a
good planner, but my follow through is so lacking. Please have mercy on me for that!
I am a writer, though, and my one explanation for taking so much time is that I need to hear the muse before I feel comfortable writing anything. The muse could rightly be
called inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
So, here goes: I had my regularly scheduled MRI in the beginning of February. I was driven in style to the MRI office by two of my friends and compatriots in homeschooling
and mothering. Jeanne, Cyndi and I then treated ourselves to dinner. Hey, it may be a little unorthodox to use an MRI appointment as an excuse for a mom’s night out, but,
if you have children, you know you’ll take whatever you can get!
The next day Craig and I went for my neurology appointment. The dr. said that the tumor had not changed and since there had not been a change since October, he didn’t think
chemo would be helpful. Yeah! I don’t need to make a decision! I am glad I don’t need chemo right now. God deserves the credit for that victory!
I do need to have my wisdom teeth removed along with another bad one. Since my teeth were jostled around when the tumor swelled, they have been cracking and breaking. I
hate to have to deal with it at all but they are giving me ogada (sp?) so out they go! But it’s a process to get the oral surgeon to talk with the radiologist and make
decisions about the procedure, etc. AH!
My pastor’s dear wife is declining in health. She is home but sleeps all the time. She has been asleep for two days without waking to eat or anything else. Pastor Brad
called it a coma. There doesn’t seem any other outcome now but that she will soon be home with her Creator, God. Of course, God could choose to raise her up and restore her
Lazarus, the centurion’s son, Jesus himself escaped from the grasp of death. It is not that God is not able, it is that He has a bigger perspective than I do. It is a hard
way, but I trust that love and capability even when it brings me sadness, great sadness. God loves Linda and Brad so much.
It sounds cliche but if she dies, she goes to a place so much better than here. A place where there is no death, no sorrow, no separation. And, in just a twinkling of an
eye, we’ll be there too. Not a place where we sit on a cloud and play harps all day. A place where there is no sin! No hatred! No corruption! The best way I can describe
what I think heaven will be like is that it will be just like living on earth, but only the best parts of it. The love, the joy, the friendships, the sunsets, sunrises.
Trees bursting forth with flowers. The smell of the air is so sweet and it never gets old. Never to have to leave the ones we love so much. And best of all, to be in the
presence of the One who knows me so well and loves me so much. To be with the One who created me. I want everyone I love to be there with me.
I love a lot of people. Many, I know, I will see in Paradise. But there are others about whom I am not sure. Please, please figure out if you know where you’re going when
the inevitable appoinment with death comes. A year ago, Linda could never have imagined she would be sleeping all day in a hospital bed as her loving husband stokes her
forehead and tells her he loves her. I don’t want to seem too preachy, but I am just pulled asunder by these events. I love you too much to lose you eternally.
I just got a phone call that Linda went home to be with Jesus this morning. I am so thankful I got to tell her I love her yesterday. It’ll be just a moment before I get to
see her again; this time in perfect paradise.
Advent Week Three – Joy
December 15, 2007 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | 5 comments
Here is what I have written to say to my church family at Grace Community Church tomorrow as we light the third candle of advent.
David asked me to say a few words about Joy because I sign all of my emails with “Joyfully, Elyse”. So, I thought I would tell you the story behind my signature.
If you ever have the occasion to visit a psychologist he or she may give you list of stress inducers to try and gauge your level of stress and therefore know how to help
you. I think the list contains about 10-15 life experiences that cause stress in your life.
Over the course of about 18 to 24 months I experienced all but two of those situations, some at the same time and some one right after the other. My marriage was in crisis.
I lost two very close friendships. We put our house on the market to sell. My husband lost his job. I found out I was, unexpectedly, pregnant. We packed up our home and
moved in with relatives. My husband got another job. I had our fifth child. And then came the icing on the cake. I was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor when our new
baby was 10 weeks old. I think the only two things on the list that didn’t happen during that time was a death in the family and a natural disaster.
When the news of the brain tumor hit, I finally started signing my emails with “Joyfully”. Why in the world would joy become my signature when I had just been told my life
could be cut far too short? Before all of this upheaval in my life, I was living with relatively little distress. My children were all healthy, my husband had a well paying
job and I belonged to a great church and I had wonderful friendships. I had everything I needed and wanted. Shouldn’t joy have been my signature back then? It wasn’t like I
wasn’t joyful before, it was just that I hadn’t really experienced the true nature of joy.
The Greek root for the word rejoice or joy refers to leaping or springing up like a gush of water, like a huge fountain. There is some outside pressure holding the water in
until the inside pressure grows so much that it explodes. It can’t be held in any longer. The emotions I was feeling, sadness, despair, loneliness, anger was the outside
I underwent 30 treatments of radiation. My husband and I drove to the hospital every day at noon. And every day that I went into the radiation room, I knew that Jesus was
in the room with me. He sat down right above my head as the machine started to whir and laid His hands on me and told me that He was not going to leave me alone. He was
going to walk through all of this with me, before me and behind me.
Joy exploded in my life. You see, nothing but circumstances had changed. God still sat on His throne. He was not taken by surprise when the radiologist told me to buy an
oxygen tank and sign a living will. His love for me and my family had not changed one iota. My future is secure, I am joyful. His name is praised, I am joyful. He works all
things together for good, I am joyful.
Many, including myself, asked, “Why?” Why a youngish woman with five young children, Lord? Why have it work out this way? But why is not the question to ask. I don’t know
why and I don’t mind that. I don’t mind because while I don’t know why, I do know Who. Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.
So I sign my emails “Joyfully, Elyse” to remind myself that I will not find joy in my circumstances. I find joy because of who God is and what He has promised me. I also do
it to remind everyone who reads my emails that I am filled with joy because I know that my Redeemer lives.
November 13, 2007 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | 6 comments
I have been getting steadily dizzier over the past few weeks and I have begin getting headaches that were increasing in severity. The ibuprofen wasn’t really working
either. While I was at the supermarket two weeks ago I finally became overwhelmed with the dizziness. It was time to go to the hospital. Off we went.
A dose of morphine and a CAT scan later, we were on our way home. I would come back again for an MRI and then again for a consult with the neurologist. They could find no
swelling and no bleeding in the ER, which was good. But the symptoms suggested something going on.
The MRI showed no remarkable change in the tumor. But, because it occupies 80% of the space in my brain stem, any small movement will affect my ability to function. The
doctors have to go on my symptoms because the MRI doesn’t really catch the incredibly fine changes in the tumor. They did say there may be more “flares” coming off the
tumor which would indicate a change in the activity level or the grade of the tumor. Meaning, it may not be growing but it may be changing composition and becoming
The suggested treament is Temador, chemotherapy. I am currently on steroids to see if that helps my dizziness and headaches. I have up to a month to decide if I want to
take this route. I am also drinking lots of carrot juice to support my immune system.
I don’t know how I feel right now. Sad? Angry? Frustrated? I am dizzy like when you get off a spinning ride at a carnival, all the time. I’ve gone from forever buzzed to
drunk. My headaches come more often and are more painful than they have been and the ibuprofen doesn’t always get it done. I’ve had to stop drinking sweet tea. Am I whining
I am feeling down and sorry for myself. I know it is just temporary. I don’t want to have to think about going blind or losing even more abilities. BUT GOD. He is still in
control and I will not be afraid. He will never lead me where His grace cannot keep me. His hand is in this even though I cannot see it right now. Let’s watch together and
see what miraculous things God will do.
Looking for joy in the storm,
Sometimes I Wonder
July 21, 2007 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | 4 comments
A few weeks ago a family in out church found out their 13 month old daughter had a brain tumor. We know the family fairly well since we’ve been in the same small group for
almost a year. The tumor was a quarter of the size of her brain. They operated on it and removed all of it. But, she has been in a coma since the operation and there is no
medical reason the doctors can see that she is in the coma. She looks like she is just sleeping, like you could shake her and she would open her eyes and smile and all
would be right with the world. That hasn’t happened yet and she has been dealing with infections from the surgery and the toll the tumor has taken on her. She is deep in
the woods still.
A normal first reaction is to get angry. Why this little girl? She hasn’t lived long enough to make any mistakes. She hasn’t eaten a poor diet. She hasn’t experienced so
many things. Why her? It just isn’t fair, is it. Why does her mother have to sit by her hospital bed day in and day out and wonder if she’s going to come home. If she does
come home will she be bedridden until her death? Will she be brain damaged? How long? How can God let this happen?
I don’t know the answer. The question is inevitable because God is supposed to be in control of everything. If He’s a loving God, how can He allow such misery, such
sadness, such loss? I don’t know how He does it. The only answer I have is that He is a loving God even when we can’t see that love. Little Cali’s life rests in the palm of
His hand whether I agree with what He is doing or not. My life rests in the same loving palm. I have to remind myself that He sees the picture of this life in the biggest
possible terms. He sees all sorts of things that I could never see. He has a reason. And it might make me mad, pound my fists into my pillow before I go to sleep. But, in
the end I know that He will work all things together for the good to those who are the called, to those who love Him. That doesn’t mean that everything that happens will be
good. It means that He weaves the good and bad into something that He calls good.
What is happening with my dear friends, the Moody family, is not good. It isn’t good no matter how you twist and turn it and try to make it shine. That dog won’t hunt. I am
praying that God will take this awful thing and work it out so that He can call it good. And I know He will.
I know that because He has never failed me yet, and there have been lots of times when He could have walked away from me. Things happen to me every day that are not good
but I want Him to have so much influence in my life that those things that are bad, awful, embarassing can be made good in His eyes.
I pray that God would be glorified through Cali’s illness. If I didn’t know that God is still in control, there would be no reason for hope in this situation. But He is and
He will move. I don’t know how He will heal Cali. He may choose to heal her completely and in a few years this will only be a very bad memory. He may choose to heal her
ultimately and bring her home to Himself. He may do something in between those two choices. He loves us more than we can understand.
So, please pray for a miracle for Cali and her mom and dad, Chad and Sarah, and big sister Bella. If you think God is capricious, a big, bad boogey man who moves us around
like pieces on a chess board, I challenge you to test Him. Ask him for a miracle and see what He does. He’s a big God and He can handle doubts and skepticism. I can’t wait
to share what He’s done, to praise the work of His hands.
The chorus of one of my favorite songs I sang at Grace the Church on the Mount in NJ is this:
Praise God, on high, all that’s wrong will be made right. How we long for the day every wounded soul would be made whole. So let’s worship Him with a mighty voice. Like
we’re already with Him in paradise. Praise God on high. praise God.
I hope to write again soon.
Driver’s license lesson
June 6, 2007 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | 6 comments
Again, I have waited too long to update. I do have an explanation. My laptop went crazy and I couldn’t remember my blog password which was saved on said broken laptop. But
enough of my ‘splainin let’s get down to brass tacks.I am doing pretty well. I am getting a little dizzier over time. I don’t drive unless I absolutely have to get behind
the wheel and I don’t go anywhere where I need to use directions. I have been increasingly annoyed by this and I am happy for the day when I don’t have to deal with this. I
am in no pain, except the occasional headaches, but I have been limited in what I can do each day. I get tired just getting breakfast every morning feels like a 10 hour
waitress shift. So, you can see why I am frustrated by it.
I have a great story. I went to Walmart a few weeks ago to get some very important things. It was a routine trip. I drove there myself and I managed to get through the
store without hitting too many things with my cart. I paid with a credit card but I haven’t signed the back. So, the cashier asked for my license.
I stop here to let you know I got my license right after I finished radiation and was weaning off the steroids. Let’s say I don’t look picture ready. I show my license to
lots of people to give them an idea of how swollen my face was while on steroids. I look like a dowager from the old country and that is being kind.The cashier looked at
the picture and then at me, the picture and then at me. I started to smile because I knew what her next question would be. “Is that you?”
I guess it looks enough like me, which I am not sure is a compliment. So, I went into my story about why I look like I just ate a dozen sausages. I almost got to the part
where I say I want to get a new license but she started praising God. In the Walmart! She said she had bumps up and down her arms. We shared a brief moment of sweet
fellowship. We thanked God for His sovereignty. I left the store reminded that God is awesome and worthy of every bit of praise that ever falls from my lips.
I have decided not to change my license picture. It is a reminder of God’s goodness that I can touch and see. And, it is as powerful as any tract that I could pass out. How
effective it is to have that license to carry in my wallet. Thank you, Lord for the bad picture on my license! God is so faithful!
I need that reminder because I am, daily, frustrated and aggravated with these limitations. I want to run a 5K and I can barely get to the mailbox (I don’t run, ever, that
is just a metaphor). I want to start my scrapbooking minstry. I want to improve our school habits. I want to write for an online journal. I want to tell my testimony to
anyone who will listen.
God knows the desires of my heart. My prayer is that I would be able to do His will. I know His will includes some of the ideas He has given me. I just pray I would be able
to move forward soon.
God is Good
January 25, 2007 in Uncategorized by Elfmom | 14 comments
I have good news and bad news. I always want to hear the bad news first so I’ll go there.
The bad news is that I have vestibulo ocular reflex problems and there is nothing that can be done about it, medically. I had to go to a super special ophthalmologist to
find this out. I hated doing the eye tests because I knew I wasn’t getting all the letters right and I am always embarrassed when I don’t accomplish something perfectly.
First born syndrome.
So, I will have to learn somehow to accommodate my dizziness. I don’t drive except when there is no other option. I can see where I’m going but I can’t go anywhere that is
unfamiliar to me and I need the car to be relatively calm. I can accomplish the first requirement fairly easily, but the second….. I don’t drive at night, except for my
monthly book club meeting. I love it so much and I am really careful, too. My angels are on high alert and all has gone well so far.
The good news is that my husband is going to start a new job the first Monday in February! He will be working for the government in Raleigh. I am excited for him and even
more excited to be able to praise the Lord for His provision. Yes, I know my husband is very good at all those computer things and he’d be able to find a job with or
without God’s help. But, we asked God to provide for us by February and He has answered our prayers with a “Yes”.
We accepted the offer because we believe that it is God’s leading and God’s appointment for my husband and for us. He has had His hand on us since the diagnosis. Actually,
He’s always had His hand on us. Sometimes we didn’t realize it, but in our finer moments, we acknowledge His care for us and humbly bow before His majesty.
It is going to be quite a transition for us. I am not sure who is going to have a harder time of it, my husband or the rest of us. He’ll have to get up considerably earlier
to get to work and that will be difficult for my late night loving husband. I am praying and believing that our children will rise to the higher level of expectation that I
will have when I am here without benefit of another adult. I also know many friends who will be there to support and help me get through each day.
This is the will of Go for us and it is good. I am hoping to develop a scrapbook ministry at my church and even working on it little by very little. School is going pretty
well. This year has been our best so far. I know it is the effectual, fervent prayers of lots and lots of loving friends and family. God has ministered to me through you
and I am humbled by it.
I find it hard to be on the receiving end of support. I prefer to support others. But this situation has kept me in an uncomfortable place. This too is God’s plan and I
know He’ll make good use of it, for me and for His kingdom.
I am praising Him for His goodness to me. Thanks for joining me in that effort.