Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Lucky #7

She did it!  Surgery number 7!  (Yes, I thought it was #8, but I miscounted.)

As before her last surgery, Ashley fasted soda pop for 4 weeks - last time it was two months!  She was very committed to her fast and her promise to God.

Marilyn flew in on Wednesday to go to surgery with us - this was her 3rd.  She's got the routine down. She's my extra set of ears.  Let's me do my own coping.  Carries bags, fixes coffee and sits with Ashley when I've got to get out of the room.  A true friend.

David and I have had the "divide and conquer" mentality for healthcare.  We have two children.  Each child gets a parent.  We hate this separation.  We are the Fabulous Four and function much better together.  But texting and phones keep us close.  And nothing beats the beautiful prayer Chris prayed over us before we left.  

On Wednesday night, Marilyn, Kayle, Ashley and I put purple streaks in our hair.  Purple is the color for Pediatric Stroke Awareness - We Streak for Strokes!

(Purple is dark and doens't show well in photos but they're there!)

The night before surgery Ashley was able to eat dinner, walk the mall and have a sleepover with her friends Felicity and Caitlin.  I don't think those girls have ever notice that Ashley has any type of disability.  It was great seeing the girls laughing and shopping and giggling.  If the Randol's ever wondered why they live in Denver - it just may be because we need them!  They have definitely learned the lesson of the God of Just enough and are now moving into the area of God of More than Enough.  Their new home is set in the forest and was a wonderful way to start our busy day.

(View from their deck.)  

On Friday morning, we stopped by Bass Pro - Sommer and Sean went with us!  Who can pass a trip to Bass Pro and stocking up on bulk cinnamon bears and starlight mints!  Then it was off to the hospital.

For our 2:45 surgery time, we checked in at 12:15.  And waited until 5:00.  We were all done.  Ashley and I were walking the halls of pre-op when we saw Dr. Chang.  "She's done," I said, "and we're leaving."

Actually we were headed to the activity room where she could play on the computer.  Dr. Chang couldn't find us!  Funny guy.  When he did arrive in the activity room, Ashley presented him with a challenge.  Dr. Chang is known for his great casts - stars, moons, mixed colors, glow in the dark.  Well, Ashley gave him two cookie cutters - a dog and a dog bone - and I said, "here's what I want."   He studied them and said he could do it.

And he did!  

It was late before Ashley got in her room.  Honestly, this was the best she has ever done after surgery - no screaming, no thrashing, no massive spasms.  Oh, our God is good!

In her room, we hung posters - pictures of family, scriptures.

We need to see God's promises ever before us!

On Saturday morning, we saw the Physical Therapist.  Lovely lady!  She's helped us twice now.  And we saw one of our favorite nurses from Romania.  She has always been so kind to us.  

By 10:00 am, the Randols were back to help us get out.  Ryan got the car for us and put her in.  Sean was in charge of the red wagon with the suitcases and each girl was carrying things for Ashley.

We loaded her in the car and by 11:00 am we were in the car headed south.  

Uneventful trip home.  Lovely colors.  Worship music.  

And God.

Always with us!

Always present!

Always More than Enough!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

God's Provision

After hours of delay, Ashley was in surgery 120 minutes. Doctors said it went text book perfect! She has had little pain. Rested well - we all did! That's God!

Even the wheelchair was right!

He is our Provider. As we need it. Each minute. Each. Breath.

Thank you Father!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Anyone who says things get easier with time has never had a child with a chronic medical condition, or put their child on an operating table multiple times. They've never waited years to conceive a child then have that dream fade like a wispy vapor.

However what does get better with time is Gods grace. It grows richer and thicker. It wraps you like a warm, worm quilt. It quiets your mind. It brings rest to your body when sleep alludes you.

Grace. So amazing. So pure. So free.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Lessons from A Soccer Season

I can't believe it's almost over!  Just a few more games and Chris's first year on Junior Varsity will be done.

Those close to us know I'm insane.

You see, conditioning started the second week in June. After a two week break after Club play.  Every day, for two hours.  Plus 10 sessions of personal conditioning to strengthen and protect his back.  Then, he had one week off in August.  This is the 285 day of the year.  He's played soccer approximately 191 days of those 285.  That's 67% of this year.  At an average of 2 hours a day that's 382 hours of play.  There have been roughly 6,840 hours in this year to date.  Approximately 20% of this year has been spent with a soccer ball.

Twenty percent of his life his year has been spent on a Mission Field.  We teach our kids what we so firmly believe - you are all called to go.  "Go into all the world," means the soccer field, the dance studio, the doctor's office, the grocery store, your business and even the blog-o-sphere.  

At one point the fatigue of the season hit him.  He asked to not go to practice.  We knew he was tired - did you read those statistics?   But he had made a commitment.  We made him go.  Then he went to Youth that night.  Commitment is hard, service is not always fun.  It's about learning to be a Man.  A Man of Character.

A Man of God.

Sometimes it means standing alone.
Doing what's right when no one else does.
Leading the pack.
Treating people with respect.
Going the extra mile.
Being early.

Staying late.
Supporting those who are cruel.
Loving those who are mean.
Keeping your mouth shut.
Speaking up for those with no voice.

And before someone goes "holy" on me and yells about a "balanced" life - Chris has also learned an important lesson on his own this year.  As he saw himself spending more and more time in the sport, God began to deal with him on how much time he spent on his relationship with God.   Each day he spends time alone, reading the Word of God.  Studying his Father's plan.  

I don't believe in a "balanced" life.  I believe in an integrated life.  We are born-again Christians.  It's who we are.  It's what we believe.  It permeates every pore of our being. 

We are not perfect - far from it!  Just ask someone who lives with us!  But we are working each day to be closer to our Father.   We take God with us everywhere!  He doesn't get left on the doorstep.  The warm-up bench.  The waiting room.  The office door.   We believe God uses every opportunity, ever failure, every success;  every bump in the road, mountain top high and valley low - everything! to bring us closer to Him.

Even 191 days of soccer.

Another lesson learned.

PS - I will not even being to add up how many miles we've driven.  Let's see, 2-a-days;  3-a-days;  training;  Albuquerque league, Denver Showcase, Tournaments.........

Thursday, October 6, 2011


So in my zeal to blog, since I hadn't done so in weeks, I posted on the wrong blog.  The hazards of keeping two going I suppose. - my other site.

The irony is, I'm writing about planning and letting God direct.

I wonder why God "directed" my steps to post there.  Someone must need to read some tidbit I posted.


That's all He asks.