Monday, March 24, 2014

Monday March 24 - Home again

We ended up spending another 5 days in the hospital but have been home again for a few days now. Whooo hoo! Derek is getting back on his feet again, and I feel like we have a little better handle on some of these ongoing issues. His doctors are following him closely and have set him up with some home nursing care which should make things a little easier and keep him HOME. We were actually laughing with some of the doctors before they set us free last week - I guess they refer to as Derek a medical "fascinoma" - mainly because nothing ever seems to quite add up with this guy. I think they want to keep testing and testing him (both for his sake and medical info). Thankfully though, they cannot argue with the size of my ever increasing baby belly and couldn't help but be sympathedic to where we are in life right now...and finally agreed to let us go! The thought of checking out of one hospital and into another is definitely not at the top of our list at the moment, but at least the conditions are a little different this time. I've been telling people how my heart and mind just are NOT ready for this focus has been elsewhere (obviously!). But here we are, about a week and half away from baby #3 and gearing up for another big life change. A few nights ago we were sitting here staring at each other, trying to wrap our minds around the fact that we'll be bringing a newborn home to all this. Honestly, ya'll must be praying for us...because today we are in better spirits and maybe even slightly excited about this baby :) It's not that we aren't truly in love this new little life God has given us...not at all. We honestly just haven't been able to let our minds go there over these last couple months.

I think this little baby's arrival is being perfectly timed by our AMAZING God...squeezing into this hard spot at just the right moment and bringing this family of mine a little taste of true JOY. 

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Tuesday March 18 - Keep on Keepin' On

I have a little time alone tonight so I thought I’d share a little bit about what’s going on with us. We’re hanging in there…we keep on keeping on if that makes any sense. We might be dangling at times this week, but overall on the upswing. These past few weeks Derek’s been slowly healing and gaining strength, which has been a delight to watch. It seems like every few days I see a little more of the old Derek…that sarcastic beefcake that always keeps me on my toes...oh how I love this guy.  We ran into a few road bumps at the end of last week though, and he is back in the hospital at the moment. He’s okay…not having overnight multiple organ failure or anything like before (thank the Lord).  But some of those underlying issues that could have possibly caused all of this to begin with are rearing their gnarly little heads again.  The doctors are all over him though, which is good and bad (poor Derek…he’s pretty sick of being drilled about his medical history by teams of doctors). We’re pretty sure he’ll be able to come home in a day or two though – which we are both REALLY looking forward to. One thing we've found out is that Derek will be having heart surgery in the coming months…so he still has another hospital stay in the near future. Please be praying for his overall health to continue to improve.  We need him strong for this. These new developments have been a little hard to swallow, but we are still trusting God and His plans for our family. 
One of the things that God has been teaching me is to WORSHIP Him, even in the middle of this mess. To be able to stand in a situation that I don’t necessarily like or want and to do nothing and offer nothing but worship to God…that is truly a life changer for this girl.  Worship is not something I'm good at even on Sunday mornings...I sing and I love the words, but I can't say that this heart truly worships this God of ours in those moments.  He is working on me ALL of this....and giving me a desire to praise Him. To set aside what I want in life…the dreams we have…the things we think we need…all of it.  To push it all to the side for a moment and just stand in praise to a worthy God and surrender.  It's an awesome and humbling experience.
A friend shared this song with me a week or so ago…“Though You Slay Me” by Shane and Shane.  I’ve been listening to this every day, my heart singing the lyrics to God in worship. There’s an excerpt from John Piper at the end as well that touches on the verse in 2Cor4:17...the one about our light and momentary troubles achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all…oh Amen. I worship God because HE IS GOD and THAT alone is enough really...but I'm also so thankful that He gives us more in these moments...that there is purpose in this struggle!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Monday March 3 - Gaining Strength

Well, here we are...all of us in our home together...LIVING life. It's a great feeling to finally be home. Derek is doing okay, nothing major seems to be going on. He said he feels the same as he did when he was in the hospital towards the end...weak and not quite right.  But he's gaining strength every day and is definitely in a better place than he was a week or so ago! It's a little different now not having the daily bloodwork and scans to tell us if he is or isn't on the up and up. All in all, I think that's a good thing though.  We need a some room to live a little and not focus on all the negatives or possibilities of.  Derek is going to be seeing a few of the specialists that were taking care of him up at Northwestern on a weekly basis for awhile until some of these lingering issues have resolved. So hopefully, some of our questions will be answered in the days ahead.

In the mean time, you won't be hearing much from us. We're all healing here...physically and emotionally really. And we just need time. We're not sure what lies ahead for Derek's health either and that is partly why we're trying to keep visitors at bay at this point. I'm looking forward to the coming weeks when we have a little better handle on this and we can start to do life with our friends and family again. We love you all so much.

We are truly so overwhelmed and forever changed by the outpouring of love, prayers and support. It's honestly been amazing. You guys rock :)  I know there are lots of you that want to help us (even still!) and we appreciate that as well...we're actually really going to need it. If you want to help us with a meal or encourage us with a card or anything at all, please just contact Calvary Church in Valparaiso (219-462-4026). They're helping to get us thru this time...and we really need them to be the go between for us until we're able to navigate on our own again.

I'll leave you all with my favorite's found in Psalm 73.  God always finds a way to make these verses come alive and speak to me.  And again, here I am, resting in this truth, looking ahead content with what's in store for us.

Psalm 73: 23-26
"Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand.  You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory. Whom have I in heaven buy you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever."