Saturday, November 3, 2012

Pain & Weakness

"My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in your weakness" 
- 2 Corinthians 12:9

Tonight, I have no idea what to say. I'm not writing to entertain or to make myself sound good, but to share my life in a very honest way, I guess.

I am a shell of the person I once was and I am withering away. I'm falling through the cracks of a deep pit that seems endless and so far, it is. There is so much pain, I am about to explode. Mostly physical and emotional pain. I've depleted and used up almost every faculty of energy I have left. This torturous and agonizingly painful way of seeing is too much to "get used to". And even though I'm almost past mourning the loss of my vision, I don't know how many new problems and unanswered questions I can take. The incessant, overwhelming pain and weakening of my body is something I just cannot deal with any longer. My joy is gone. I don't smile that much anymore. Every day is a loosing battle and I don't want to fight anymore.

My smiles and laughter are contrived and I put up such a front or facade that I seem like I'm completely fine, which is sometimes okay because that's the only way I can make it through a day and if I'm around people I most certainly can't loose my emotions in the middle of a public place. And in order to continue on with life and to try to do anything I have to force it.  

Something that's even more difficult is watching the heartbreak happening to my parents. They are the most supportive and loving people. They've been fighting for and helping me in every possible way. I don't have to worry about asking them for help and wonder if they're getting tired of it all. No, they have never once, through all of these years, had a poor attitude or shown frustration towards me. They each set an amazing example of what it means to be a great parent and I could not be more grateful for them.

There was a song we sang the other day during church called Restoration. For some reason, singing it this time meant something very different to me than it ever had before. There was a different sense of hope that filled these words. It was a thought like, "Yes I'm mourning, but you will turn it into dancing one day. Yes there's too much weeping, but you will turn it into laughing. Yes there's so much sadness, but you WILL turn it into joy one day." That's the only thing I can count on. Even though I don't have tangible hope, God's grace through Christ is the only real hope. Because one day, whether soon or after my life on earth is complete, I have God's promise that my body will be restored and there will be no more pain.

I want to move forward in my life. Heavens, I'm 24. I want to be able to pursue my passion and be active in the things I love.  I want to be able to walk by myself and to do things without help and without the worry of hurting myself. But more than that I want to be able to look at my sweet baby nieces and nephews without constantly screaming in pain on the inside. Life just isn't fair to anyone. And all the more, we don't deserve it to be fair in the first place.

I don't want to be pitied or felt sorry for. The purpose in this post is to be transparent and honest. I don't want come off as someone who's so strong and really walking through this with a great attitude, and that I'm doing great and "way to go me because I'm awesome". But actually, there's no strength and there's no hope and there is a bad attitude sometimes. This should be a reminder that God is the one who is in control of it all. He is completely sovereign in every aspect of everyone's life, including mine. Even in those really difficult physical things and difficult emotional things, He's carrying me through all of those. I'm actually not in this alone. And thankfully, since He has graciously saved me from death and given me eternal life and a relationship with him through Christ, He's growing and molding me into the woman He intends for me to be. This part of life is very much apart of that growth.

Right now we are praying for God to move, to open doors, help us find answers, to heal, and for His will to be done above all.

You bring restoration
You bring restoration
You bring restoration
to my soul

You've taken my pain
called me by a new name
You've taken my shame
and in it's place, You give me joy

You take my mourning and turn it into dancing
You take my weeping and turn it into laughing
You take my mourning and turn it into dancing
You take my sadness and turn it into joy

hallelujah, hallelujah
You make all things new, all things new

Friday, August 3, 2012

USA Swim Team "Call me maybe"

In view of the Olympics and the joy it brings, I wanted to share a video that I just LOVE. It has obviously gone viral and therefore most of you have probably seen it. Since everyone is much more recognizable in this video to me now, it's even better. If you haven't then here it is for you!

P.S. I'll give an update on the past two months health wise next time. I'm not quite able to put it into words just yet.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Surgery & an Encouraging Video

I realized I haven't told many people about my next surgery, completely by accident. I'll be having my next eye muscle surgery on May 30th. We leave on Monday the 28th. I have a pre-op appointment Tuesday and possibly a shopping appointment with H&M later that day. Priorities. And then the surgery on Wednesday morning.


Sometimes stories of other people's life experiences are the biggest encouragement to me. This video has been one of the biggest ones for me just in the last couple of months and it actually has nothing to do with Tim Tebow, no offense to him, but all to do with this sweet kid, Adam Hubbs.

In the middle of his story he expressed one of the most raw and heartbreaking things I've ever heard a child ever say, making me realize how my worst days can seem completely insignificant.

Referring to moments when he wanted to die, "Yeah, I had days when I just wanted them to put something in my IV so I would just fall asleep. But I know you can't do that. I just think God chose me because I'm strong enough to get through it and some other people aren't".

He just seems so strong in all the important ways. Please watch it. It'll change your heart and your day I'm sure.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Becoming an Aunt Lo

I stumbled across a note I wrote one random day during my Sophomore year of college. It was back when people used that note section of your Facebook. After I read it, it took me aback, melted my heart and made me want to share it with you today. So here it is:

Date written: September 12, 2007

The occurrence of life that made me write this: Becoming an Aunt Lo for the first time and having to leave the family to be back at school. It was also a time of struggling a bit with migraines and trying to manage a small bundle of other life situations. So therefore, it was a recognition of what I thought about life and wanting nothing else than to hold that baby.

"God's hit me more in one night than He has in the past week...and that, in itself, makes my heart ache too. I should be noticing God hitting my heart constantly. And, in the past month or so I feel like this has been more and more apparent for me. And that....

life is so short

And precious, and fragile. Yet at the same time strong, awesome, and for some, brand new.

Why can things that go on seem so awful and seem to pull you down when, at the same time, there are some who struggle and deal with in-fathomable things. so many things. And then, when someone looses their life or are about to, you somehow see just how precious it is, and how truly blessed and good and sweet your life still is.

Sometimes its struggles. Sometimes, its someone new in the world. Someone that's not even yours and haven't even known for very long but makes you cry when you're far away and show you, personally, how precious life can be and how awesome God is.

Yes, things go on that really are so hard to deal with. Things that would be difficult for anyone. But when someone around you is going through something so heart aching and the only way you would know is if they simply told you, it kind of stops you in your tracks and shuts you up.

And I could not be more thankful for that tonight. Thank you, God, for making me stop and be silent and still and know that you are God. Awesome God."
{At the end I had a picture of this girl from when she was first born...}

{Who now looks like this at almost 5...}
She's the one on the right and the big girl on the left is almost 4.


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Tutorial: How-to Transfer an Image

*Please Note: I wrote this post back in the Fall, not recently.*

I feel like its finally time for a tutorial...I have tutorials exploding from the seams of my computer that have yet to be posted. There's no better time than now to share one of them!

Today's is one I made back in the Fall and it's how to transfer an image from paper to another surface (i.e. canvas, paper, wood, etc.) I learned this back in my college drawing class. Its actually not something you should do in a drawing class because its basically the equivalent of cheating. But for crafting purposes, it's perfect!

*Keep an eye out for the TIPS found throughout the steps.

I love ampersands.

Things you need:
- canvas
- good pencil
- printed image (to transfer)
-tape (optional)

 Step 1: Print out the image or words you would like to transfer to the canvas.
TIP: I like to cut the edges of the paper an inch or two away from the edge of the image itself. It makes it easier.

Step 2: Place the paper face down on a hard surface.
Step 3: With the pencil on its side, scribble all over the paper completely covering the edges of the image.

Step 4: Position the image face up on the canvas where you would like it to be.
TIP ONE: Precision is key. Take the time to make sure you have the image placed exactly where you want it (i.e. centered and not crooked)
TIP TWO: I like to tape ONE side of the paper to the canvas to hold it steady for the next step.

Step 5: Take the pencil and draw along the outside of the image.
TIP: Make SURE you press very firmly. Otherwise, it won't show up on the canvas.

Step 6: See, the pencil will barely show up on the canvas. So after you finish painting, you won't be able to see the marks.

I'm not really sure why I took a picture of this.

Step 7: Find a paint you love. I mixed up a few to make the perfect color.

Step 8: Paint the image. 
TIP: I like to use a shorter, angled brush. It gives you more solidity when trying to stay in the lines. Especially for those of us (cough, cough me) who have a shaky hand when it comes to anything that doesn't erase.

Step 9: Be happy and relish in how perfectly straight, centered, and beautiful your canvas looks!

Here's another example of how I used this transferring technique to paint a word:
(I cut out each letter individually to make sure it fit on the canvas)

This is the Russian word for "trust". At least, I think it is!

I hope this is helpful and fun to try! Let me know if you have any questions!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Perfectly Imperfect

I've been thinking a lot lately. I have a lot of time to think, so my mind runs rampant. I could sit and list off 100+ daily things or activities that I cannot do. I could tell you how much and often it makes me cry and how often I have to tell someone "no" when they invite me to something. I could tell you all about what the inside of my heart feels when my body tells me "you're done" and what happens when I ignore that warning.

Over the past 3 years and 5 surgeries later, I could also tell you the way these surgeries effect the depth of my heart and my sense of self-worth.

Life is different for the time being and it has been for a while. While not being able to do the things of life I'm used to and replacing those with limitations, it has hurt the very deep places of my heart. One day, I decided to look up the definition of limitation and found this:

When I had seen this, which was a couple months ago, it represented the state I was in exactly. And while those limitations overshadow and become more intrusive, I have one thing that is steadfast and remains true no matter what I am experiencing:

The fact that I am a daughter of the King. Of the one, true God. The God who created me, knew me, knit me together before I was ever shown to anyone else (Psalm 139:13). And the way He made me, even in the so-called imperfections, are perfectly imperfect. And I can say with full and complete honesty, even with tears burning in my eyes, and in the midst of the most profoundly difficult place of life I have ever been, that I wouldn't want my body any other way because I KNOW that God has me in His hands and made and allowed my body to be this way for a very specific (and completely not understood) reason.

God places us on this earth and gives us life because He has a very specific purpose for our lives. Each one of us are here for very different reasons and each one of us are loved by God in a way we will never be able to fathom or fully grasp. I am so thankful for that simple truth that is the basis for life and the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Knowing the state of my heart and life, I absolutely would not know how I would be able to deal with this without knowing Christ as my Lord and Savior. I wouldn't.

I'm trying my best this time around to keep in mind these things:
 - to not always be a hero
 - to ask when I need help
 - to know my limitations and live accordingly
 - to keep goals and do things that bring joy
 - to hold tightly to that everlasting joy that only God can provide and that never truly goes away
 - keeping in mind that this is only for a time because healing is in His hands, not mine.
 - to always be grateful for the people He places in my life and who love me so much.

On a side note, I typed this post almost completely with my eyes closed. Finally, my keyboarding class from high school has finally come in handy!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Top 10 Pins: Encouragement

This may be inspirational word overload, but here are the Top 10 Pins I've been finding the most encouragement from this week. (Okay, eleven)

This week has been challenging in itself. And these each just give me a great deal of encouragement. And note, that half of them are scripture...the best place to find it.


Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Post Easter

Easter was absolutely a delight. While it was coupled with moments of some intense physical issues, it was worth every moment of it. My entire family was able to spend this Easter together, which is rare indeed. My middle sister, brother (in law), and nephew live down in Austin and my other brother (in law) always has to work on Sundays and basically every holiday between the months of January and September. So Sunday was exponentially enjoyable since we all were able to celebrate Christ's death and resurrection together.

We love each other, can't you tell?

Not only that, but we all went to church together at Prestonwood to watch my brother (in law) be baptized that morning. He's been a follower of Christ for about 10 or 11 years but made the decision to be baptized this week. It was such a special morning, filled with joy.

{One song that I absolutely love, cannot seem to find a link to share, and is so pertinent and perfectly fitting for what Easter is, is by Desperation Band called Overcome. Its also in the album called Counting on God. You can find it on Spotify and iTunes.}

In conclusion, Easter was a delight. Sometimes (and I don't know how) I fail to recognize Christ's death and resurrection and make a point to thank Him for that as much as I should. How?! That is the Gospel! I wouldn't know what to do with life, let alone have it, if I didn't know Christ as my Lord and Savior. And so, it is necessary and a blessing to have a day each year centered on celebrating Christ's death and life.

"For God so loved the world that he sent his one and only Son, 
that whosoever believes in Him, shall not perish 
but have eternal life
For God did not send his Son in the world to condemn the world,
but to save the world through Him." 
-John 3:16-17

Thank you Jesus.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Baltimore Pics!

I thought I would share some pictures from our past two trips to Baltimore this year! There's only a few and just some random places we experienced. It was enjoyable...except for the surgery and anxiety provoked moments.

{January Trip}

At Regi's - A quaint deli tucked in the south part of downtown.

Across the street from Regi's there was a overly stuffed old bookstore/Russian trinket store and had an enclave. I like to consider it a super secret spot.

Mom and Dad. Cute you guys.

They have these all over town. Neat.

The morning we left and it SNOWED! This was in January btw.

Best mom in the world.

A snowy Virginia.

This is the bracelet my parents gifted me in the taxi cab on the way to the hospital the morning of one of my surgeries.

Here's what it says: "He replied, "If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and planted in the sea,' and it will obey you." -Luke 17:6

{March Trip}

Have to wear your 50-cent-best-friend ring when you can't take the real thing with you.

Cherry blossoms. All over the city. And cute brick streets everywhere too.

I died when I saw this door. How cute!

Friday, March 30, 2012

New Video Update: Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Considering my current physical state, I thought it would be best to give an update via a video.

So here it is! Plain, dry, slow, and as per usual, absurdly long.

{Click here to learn the background details on what I'm talking about in the video}

"Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 
For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 
So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal...We live by faith, and not by sight." 
- 2 Corinthians 4:16-18; 5:7

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Surgery Today.

Tonight I write an unexpected post. I had my post-op appointment yesterday in Baltimore at Johns-Hopkins and came to the appointment with little expectations. From a long appointment, I've been given the quick opportunity (because of a cancellation) to have another eye muscle surgery tomorrow. Actually seeing as how I'm writing past midnight it would technically be considered today (Thursday).

Allow me to explain what happened:

The movement and abilities of my eyes have changed dramatically each time I've had surgery. And with that comes new difficulties and inabilities. From this most recent surgery, I went from having about 10% single vision to having about 15%, with the rest of it being double vision. I still am unable to drive, look at anything below me, walk very safely, and read, etc. They had slightly improved my upward gaze, while also causing to worsen my downward gaze severely.

I came to this appointment not having much of an expectation for it. My surgeon (Dr. Guyton) is the best in the world in this field and so kind. It takes months to get an appointment with him and sometimes even longer to get a surgery scheduled.  But in scheduling for my three surgeries with him, two of them were scheduled within a week of my appointment because of cancellations that came hours before my appointment.  Other doctors come from around the world to shadow and learn from him. So while four extra people were staring into my eyes and examining them yesterday, my mom and I were separately praying that God would grant Dr. Guyton a great deal of understanding, clarity and wisdom of what to do about this. God provided exactly that.  After much consideration and discussion, Dr. Guyton feels that it is in my best interest to have two separate surgeries because if you do too many procedures to the eye at one time it can affect the blood supply and cause blindness. So in an effort of caution, he will do two surgeries, with a possible third. This first surgery will happen tomorrow (Thursday March 22nd) and the second will happen in 6-8 weeks. So we are now staying here until Saturday and then flying back to Dallas.

While life has been really different this semester (I've taken a leave of absence for this semester from working on my Master's degree at Dallas Theological Seminary), I most certainly wasn't expecting this. And while the option of having surgery so soon took my breath away, I couldn't think of any reason why not to. With anything this life changing, it brings a sense of anxiety or wonder. But I just keep thinking, "Let's just do this". I really have a calmness and a peace in my spirit about it all.  I figured that God knows exactly what He's doing, just like the last 4 surgeries.  No matter what the outcome, my prayer is that His will be done because I know that is the best place I can be, in the center of His will for my life. Thank you so much to everyone who has been so kind to pray over me and what God's doing. I appreciate that more than anything else.

My brain has officially stopped working so I hope this is enough of an update. As soon as I can see well enough, I will post something again for sure. I'm not exactly sure what everything will look like after tomorrow, but I have no reason to worry. I have a God who loves me and is far bigger than any difficult situation.

"I keep my eyes always on the Lord.
With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.
Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices;
my body also will rest secure"
-Psalm 16:8-9 

Monday, March 19, 2012

Two month update


I know I say this every time, but I can't believe it's been over a month since I've blogged. I've been really bothered by this tendency because I really wanted to give updates about the surgery, and just blog for the fun of it. Most of the time, I like to blog at night (not sure why), but I've noticed that every day I forget and by the time its time to go to bed, I am completely exhausted and just can't muster the energy to do so.

Another small part of me keeps having the thought that "Well, you don't have anything worth saying so why bother". There's no truth behind that or reason to believe it. It's more than just writing out my thoughts or heart. It's not so that people will read or care about what I have to say, but simply to let out those things that so very much entangle my mind. Also to just do something I enjoy! And if people want to read it and enjoy it, so be it!

It's silly really.

So here's a rough update of the last couple of months. SO MUCH HAS HAPPENED. Not necessarily concerning me, but just throughout life and everyone I'm surrounded by. My surgery went well as they had expected. And the recovery/healing period is always obnoxiously slow. I haven't been able to do much. The first month I did A LOT of sitting. And simultaneously developed more of a backside. Something of which I am currently working on to be rid of :) AND lots of my extended family were able to come into town and it was so special to spend time with all of them.

The second month I kept going back and forth from the parent's house to my apartment, living out of a suitcase and I'm finally getting settled back in, ready to put the suitcase away! While my oldest sister and bro-in-law and nieces and nephew have been gone FAR TOO LONG at Spring training, my other older sister and my new, tiny nephew have been able to come up from Austin for a visit a couple of times. So its been a pure delight to hang with them and look at their faces. My parents have been absolutely, positively unbelievably supportive and are worthy of a post all on their own. There is no denial that I couldn't do this without them. I could, but I wouldn't know what to do with myself. Although having them drive me practically everywhere makes me feel like a middle-schooler all over again, they do so with such willingness. Never once have they made me feel like an inconvenience, of which I know that I am to some natural extent.

Overall, these past two months (two months exactly), have been a journey of learning a lot of life lessons. So many that I won't even go into tonight. God's been showing me a lot I didn't know about myself. And a lot about being in relation with others. And how to be thankful. And more so than anything, to be patient. There's a lot on my mind. And there's a lot I don't understand right now either. But like I said a few months ago, I'm trying to take life one step at a time.

Somehow I'd like to share with you more in depth on how my surgery went and how exactly it has changed and what "It went well" really means.

Tomorrow, in fact, my mom and I will be going back up to Baltimore for my post-op appointment to re-examine everything. I'm not sure what I'm thinking, but I do know that I'm just trusting that God really must have this in His control, and I'm not really concerning myself with much more tonight. Just resting my weariness and my heart at His feet and being reminded tonight by my best friend what it means to really surrender everything to the Lord. And that's exactly and all that I want to do at this point.

I'll be sure to give some type of update in the near future, and more of an update on life in general.

PS- I've got looooads of tutorials bursting at the seams to share soon...

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Prayers needed tonight.

I promise to give an update of my surgery in my next post which will be soon, but before I do, I would like to request a prayer from all of you please.

I've been seeing a giant prayer request about a family all over my facebook the past few days. They had delivered a set of twins far too early. One of the boys went to be with Jesus soon after being delivered and the other is fighting like a warrior to survive and having a great deal of problems. I know there have been an unbelievable amount of you praying for me the past months and this sweet little man is need for yours immediately. I feel rather compelled tonight to share this with you and I don't normally do this unless I feel strongly to do so. And tonight, I do.

The full story of this family's current struggle can be found here and I am sure there are many different things to be praying for them:

Here is an update from the daddy about Asher:
     "We almost lost Asher tonight. At 2:30am two nurses rushed into our room a woke us up and told us that the NICU had called and said that if we wanted to see our precious Asher before he passed that we needed to go now. We got Robyn into a wheel chair and rushed down to the NICU where everyone in the unit was working on Asher trying to save his life. 

They had ti give him surfactant tonight for lung development and it created a small tear in his lung due to how delicate they are. Air was building in his chest because of the tear in his lung causing his heart rate to drop. It was a crazy few minutes as they rushed to save him and they were able to put a needle into his chest and aspirate the air off until a NICU doctor could put in a line that could drain the air better. After they had the line in his chest his heart rate went and all of his vital signs returned to normal. As you can imagine, it was another scary moment in what seems to be a never ending nightmare. However, it was another example of how we have no control over anything and we had to again just beg God for Him to save our little boy. After losing Titus I can't imagine losing Asher, but we know that God has his days numbered just as He does for all of us and that His plan is perfect no matter what! As we prayed over Asher as the doctors rushed to save his life, we continued to pray the verse that led us to his middle name of Mark. In Mark 9:24 it says "I do believe. Help me with my unbelief." This verse has comforted us throughout our fertility struggles and it was powerful tonight as we feared we would lose another son. We prayed that we do believe God's plan, but that he would help us with our unbelief at the same time so that we could trust Him more in all things...including with His plan for our family!Please pray In Jesus' Name specifically that:1. That Asher's lung would heal and that they could remove the aspirator tube in his chest. 2. That this did not cause any trama to his brain and that he doesn't develop a "brain bleed". This has been explained to us as a major risk for micro-premies and is the equivalent of a stroke for adults. 3. That he would not develop any infections. 4. That God would save him and make him into a mighty warrior for His kingdom!5. That God would help us believe more deeply in Him and that we would trust Him more with our family and our lives. And, that He would help us with our unbelief in the times of fear like we've continued to have throughout this process. Thank you all for being faithful prayer warriors with us! We pray that the Lord takes you deeper in His relationship with you as you pray with us in this struggle!" -Bryan Adams

It's truly amazing to hear just words come from a man struggling in so many heartbreaking ways. I've never heard people speak in quite a manner as this when faced with one of the most painful parts of life I would wish upon no one. It is such an encouragement to me and really makes me evaluate what my trust in God really looks like in all parts of my life. Please please please join me in prayer for this little baby and his parents. They need it right this minute and it is the best thing any one of us could do for them and their hearts. 

Thank you for always reading my posts and joining me in such a request. My hope is in God who loves us more than we can fathom. I'm just so thankful tonight that He who knows and understand the things of life far more than we ever could has everything in His hands and in His control. I believe that.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


This week has been a slow one. I finally sit now, in a dark hotel room, both of my unbelievably wonderful parents asleep, and me taking one last moment to rustle through my thoughts and heart before tomorrow.

Tomorrow (okay, technically today), I'm having my fourth surgery on my eye and it cannot come quickly enough. The past six months have been unbelievably challenging in every possible way (meaning physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually). And the last couple of weeks have very much left me, in a way, unsettled in heart and mind. The closer I got to packing my bag, the closer the reality of it all came welling up inside of me. While having my moments, I knew it would be okay. I've just been ready for it to be here.

Last night I went to my parent's house to spend the night and leave for the airport the next morning. The 24 hours before getting to that safe place we call home, I was quite unsettled. I was just begging for some peace while trying my best, even sometimes audibly, to remind myself and proclaim the truths about being a daughter of the King. When I got to the house and got out of my car, I was completely caught in an upward gaze. I felt so compelled to just stop and look at the beauty that rested above me. The night sky had this filtered/muted blue tone and was so full of bright stars and whispy clouds it was unbelievable. It was truly majestic.

I stood for just a moment and was reminded slowly but fully of one truth that is ever so foundational. God created the unfathomable mass of celestial creation as well as the rest of existence. He himself set those creations in place and has His mighty hand grasping full control over all of it (Job 38). And then I thought, that same Mighty hand has a full grasp and control over this body of mine (Psalm 139:10). Wow.

So with that came a peace that stilled my soul because of a perfect love from my Creator that cast out all of my fear  (1 John 4:18). And I could not be more thankful. Because of Christ, I have life. And because of Him, I can do nothing less than give Him my whole life (words reminded to by my sweet friend Mer).

So at this point, while always praying for healing, above all else, I am praying that His will be done. That no matter what happens, His will be done. Because I am always reminded and know that the best place I can be is in the center of His will. God knows what's best for me and loves me in a way far more than I will ever be able to grasp. This life is not about me and I'm thankful to simply have it. To have eyes that see and breath to breath.

I'm taking this one step at a time and literally one day at a time because frankly, I have not thought past Wednesday. I cannot take another moment without sharing with you a video that completely penetrated my heart a few months ago. Please take a few moments to watch this. It's a piece of a sermon by Louie Giglio explaining the phenomenal way nature sings praises in worship to our God (Psalm 148). And it will rock your a good way.

Praise Him!

"Where can I go from Your Spirit?
Or where can I flee from Your presence?
If I ascend to heaven, You are there;
If I make my bed in Sheol, behold, You are there.
If I take the wings of the dawn,
If I dwell in the remotest part of the sea,
Even there Your hand will lead me,
And Your right hand will lay hold of me.
If I say, "Surely the darkness will overwhelm me,
And the light around me will be night,"
Even the darkness is not dark to You,
And the night is as bright as the day.
Darkness and light are alike to You.
For You formed my inward parts;
You wove me in my mother's womb.
I will give thanks to You, for tI am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well."
Psalm 139:7-14

Sunday, January 15, 2012

hearing herself for the first time

Today, I want to share a video with. I love coming across things that are so extraordinary and inspirational and completely melt my heart.

Sometimes we all need to see things like this...

I'll leave the video to speak for itself:

Oh, and here is her blog...SO worth the time to check out! (In the world, but not of the world)

Friday, January 13, 2012

One Wintery Wednesday Afternoon

For me, I'm starting the year off with a lot of potentials. I want to let everyone who has been so kind to keep me in their prayers and for those who have graciously watched my SUPER long video, that I have decided to have the surgery. I'll be having it on January 18th by the same doctor I was blessed with last year.

As I write this, I'm getting sick to my stomach realizing how much I haven't let myself really think about it. It's coming up rather quickly and I'd like it to slow down...

My heart is pounding...

And somehow I have the reaction to think it's better if I just think about it in little pieces or not at all. For the sake of my heart? For my well-being? No. That's not good. And definitely not helpful in the long run.

This is a serious surgery with very serious potentials. To put it simply, the worst outcome from this would be an inverted eye. Meaning that I would be cross-eyed. Perminently. And it would hurt. And I would only be seeing double. Then they would bring me back up there to have another surgery to fix that if it did happen. I understand that there is just as much of a chance, if not more, that nothing but good things would result. 

But I am human. And I am, frankly, scared out of my mind.

I have no idea what will come of this and the negative possibilites just shake me to my core, becuase I cannot imagine my vision being any worse, yet I know there's the possibility of it and I DO NOT want to know what that looks like.

At this point, there are days when I would find more relief if I could just scratch my eyes out. And sometimes I want to. But I don't. Then I have the thought of "Oh no, if I want to do that now, what am I going to feel if it gets worse. Again." Since I can barely handle my reality, I just can't handle the thought.


One wintery Wednesday afternoon I sat on a bench with my best friend. We overlooked this beautiful view of a lake amidst a hilly neighborhood. We drank our sonic drinks and talked. We talked over all kinds of life things. So much is happening in both of our lives right now, it's unbelievable. 

I've known this gal for over half of my life and have been exceptionally close to her for most of it. She has walked by my side through so many countless difficult moments of life, which is probably what makes us so bonded. God made her the complete opposite of me. And one of the best things about that is she makes me think in a different way than I never would be able to myself. We talked about how I was going to think about this surgery and experience. And I told her about how I hadn't really been letting myself, but praying that my heart would open up to it.

It was one of the best, most gentle, most calm, most needed talks I have had in a very long time. It was like God used my sweet, sweet friend to speak to me in such a gentle manner. She was used in a way that made me search my own heart, gain more of an understanding of my perspective, and reign in all of the one million thoughts I've had. God spoke through her in a way that helped me better understand the way I should trust in Him, and how I should go forward in each little step, no matter how small. He spoke through my sweet friend by reminding me of hope. Hope is something I feel like I loose sight of somedays in the midst of all the visual chaos. More so than anything, she showed me how to truly care for someone else. Because in the midst of an unbelievably painful and long physically ill journey she has been on, she sits with me, in the cold, and loves on me in every possible way. She's always there. What a blessing. But also, what a blessing that afternoon was for God to completely meet me right where I was in life, and speak through someone I care for so deeply.

Although I talk about some very difficult experiences and thoughts that I struggle with during these last few months, I don't want it to seem as though I don't have hope or trust in the Lord. My life and my trust is foundationally set in Him, in my Creator, and nothing will shake that. I know with full confidence that He has control over this life of mine, but in the midst of the darkness, I fall hard to my knees. And I've come to realize that really, there isn't a better place to be.

This post is somehwhat arbitrary in thought and I hope you can bare with me. There is so much going through my mind and I want to be as bold and transparent as possible. I want to leave you with a piece of God's word that's just been sitting with me over the past week:
"Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, 
for his compassions never fail. 

They are new every morning; 
great is your faithfulness. 

 I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; 
therefore I will wait for him.” 

The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, 
to the one who seeks him"

- Lamentations 3:23-25