Friday, July 18, 2014


I have been blessed to have so much support in the last week and a half since my surgery, and literally could not have done this without friends and family helping out, and I am so thankful. I wanted to write a little bit about the experience while it is still fresh in my memory, just so I have it for future reference.

This is my first experience having surgery. All day before and especially the morning of were just miserable with anxiety. I was surprised in the whole triage and pre-op process how much I could hear other people's conversations. And over and over, every patient talked about how nervous they were. I guess it is just scary to be that much out of control of your own body.

The surgery went smoothly, but due to an equipment malfunction, I was under anesthesia twice as long as they anticipated. my surgery was at 7, I was starting to wake up in recovery around noon, saw Brian and my dad briefly around 1pm, an was up in my room by 4. I did not anticipate how awful that first day would be. I didn't eat any solid food until late that night, didn't get out of bed at all until the next morning, and that was with assistance. I was discharged at 4pm on the 2nd day, and ouch...that was a rough ride home.

The first week was just one step at a time...every day was a little bit better - at first I was in bed all day except for a one-hour trip downstairs. The next day, able to sit up in bed and come down twice. The next day, eating full meals and just taking two naps. The next day, just one nap. By day 5, I was able to get dressed, go to church and drive home. 

This second week, I'm feeling fairly normal, just tired and sore. The hardest part is realizing that I need to take it easy. The house is still bustling around me, and my mother-in-law is here this week to help, especially with Anna. But she really needs help, and I just cannot sit on the couch all day and watch her do it alone, so I do what I can. And after a few hours, my body hits a wall and I need to stop. But I'm figuring out how much I can do. Kathy has been a God send this week, and I literally couldn't have done it without her.

Poor Anna. Actually Anna is fine, I am the one having a hard time not picking her up. She falls down and is crying and I just want to scoop her up. I feel like I miss her and I'm afraid that she will feel rejected or something. But she really seems to be fine and happy, loving the extra daddy and grandma time. Four more weeks. 

This week has also been VBS. We go to this fabulous program that is a little bit of a drive from us, but the kids love it, it is so well done, and we knows lots of families who go there, so there are lots of friends for the kids. But Katy has been having a hard time lately again, so I ended up being a classroom assistant 3/5 days in order to help her "conquer" VBS with success. That really wore me out, both physically and emotionally. But it's done. (Had I known this was going to be the case, I wouldn't have done this one week after surgery, I THOUGHT I was going to relieve our workload a bit by dropping 3 kids off for a couple of hours everyday.)

But the weather has been gorgeous, the kids have lots of neighbors outside playing, and friends have been bringing loads of food. Now starts the countdown to Luke's surgery: 6 days. I really look forward to mid-August when all of this recovery is behind us.

Friday, July 04, 2014


Brian found some old photos when he was fixing something in his mom's attic this week. I was shrieking when I saw some of them... We certainly gave Luke the perfect middle name (Brian)!

Thursday, July 03, 2014

Cousin swim at Grammy and Papa John's

We're back from our trip to Kentucky and it was a great time, as usual. We celebrated birthdays (Luke's, mine, and Kelly's), did some fireworks, watched late night movies, ate lots of good food and swam a LOT. The best part is lots of time with family, playing and chatting and catching up since we don't get to see them often. The kids are in heaven while we are there, and all the swimming wears them OUT. I always love how every year, that much time in the water means that every child reaches a new level of swimming independence:

-Katy swims all over the pool, shallow and deep end, without assistance or an adult needed in the water (we're still watching from the side, of course). She was doing this last year too, but it is just awesome when they get to this point. 

-David was the most significant: this is the first year that he never needed any kind of floatie...he swam around the shallow end of course, but also jumping/sliding into the deep end and swimming to the edge like a pro. He also picked things up off the bottom of the pool in water over his head. He'll be able to do the diving board the next time we go to the city pool. 

- The first day, Luke stayed on the steps and wouldn't do anything else. But eventually, he was wearing a floatie vest, moving all around the shallow end on his own, even without an adult next to him. 

- Anna became quite the daredevil! She jumped off the side into my arms, and eventually she was pointing to the slide, wanting to go down. Sure enough, Brian took her down on his lap, and she wanted to do it again and again! (Pictures below). 

My friend Beth gave us this Cars party pack that was entirely paper party supplies - the girls had a blast setting up a "Lightning McQueen party" for Luke.

Brian's gift to me: he got the first year of this blog printed and bound into a book! There's potential to finish the rest of the project, but it isn't cheap, so this was a very cool surprise.

At any given time, there's a handful of kids in the pool (and usually either Brian or I or both, too, since we have so many non-swimmers).
(Aunt Kelly was testing the sports mode on her new camera for some of these)

He really thought he was smiling.

Look at that face!

And she wanted to do it again and again!

Brian's such a good dad - he's completely under water, trying to keep her head up and pass her to me.

Carrie and Luke having a snack in the hammock.

We eat most meals outside in the gazebo.

Grammy making snow cones.

This is Luke's cautious face, he's nervous about the sparklers.

Watching fireworks

Cousins! L to R, Leah (11), Luke (4), Kim (14), Anna (1), David (6), Carolyn (10), Katy (8)