Monday, March 28, 2011

The Beginning of the End

That phrase instantly makes me think of the Black Eyed Peas... You know, they have one album called "The End," and they recently came out with one called "The Beginning." Stellar music, but not why I've titled this blog post "The Beginning of the End."

I'll give you ONE guess as to why this is the title of my post....


C'mon, you can do it....

Keep thinking....

Got it?

I thought you would....

That's right....


Today I start my VERY last college class.....





Now.... Let's Dance. Dirty Bit.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

My Sister is Amazing Pt. 2

Jeremiah 1:5 Before I formed you in the womb I knew you.  Before you were born I set you apart!

We were not accidents.  You, me, and everyone- we were all born in response to God’s plan, not as reconsideration. Before we were conceived, before we took our very first breath, everything about our lives was planned. God uses everything about us (whether that be our weaknesses or our strengths) in order to carry out His plan for ALL of us. We have triumphs and sorrows. Everything that happens in our lives is essential to this plan.

Psalm 139: 16 You saw me before I was born and scheduled each day of my life before I began to breathe. Every day was recorded in your book!

The past few weeks have been some of the scariest weeks in my life. Scarier and more uncertain than anything I’ve ever experienced. As many of you know my amazing sister Michelle was hospitalized with H1N1 and a severe case of double pneumonia. And praise God, she is HOME tonight! That’s right, I said she is HOME! 

I’ve never been more aware of God’s plan, until these past days. I’ve spent more time on my knees and with my nose in the Bible, than I ever have. I spent most of the day praying. Praying for healing, praying for strength (for my family), and praying that God’s plan included my sister to live. I sometimes even found myself begging God to heal her. I selfishly asked Him to let her LIVE, more than once. I am glad He loves me enough to overlook my selfishness…. Thank you, God.

The doctors were uncertain of Michelle’s recovery. They told us that they had no reason to believe that she would not survive. We were told that many times. However, I am not sure how much of that was so we wouldn’t worry—or give up hope.

I never gave up hope. I knew that there was a plan. I couldn’t imagine the rest of my life’s plan, without my sister in it. I didn’t want to.  And I have never been MORE thankful for answered prayers.God’s plan includes sorrow and sometimes a lack of understanding, on our part. However, God knows what it feels like to grieve and to lose. He knows what it’s like to have emotions. He sent His son Jesus to live and breathe, just as we do. He came, He lived, and then he sacrificed His life, so that you and I may live for eternity. The plan for Jesus was to leave this World at the age of 33…. the same age as Michelle.

Michelle, my beautiful and wonderful sister, I am amazed by your will power. I believe that with all of the praying, God has spared your life. Your plan is not complete. I pray that you know how blessed you are, how much we all love you, and how THANKFUL we are you are still with us. Thank you for coming back to us! I love you BIG!

Thank you all for praying. Please continue to pray. She has a very long recovery ahead of her. I know she can do it. She has amazing inner strength that is bound to make her body stronger! 

Thursday, March 17, 2011

My Sister is Amazing

(I'm going to ramble, be forewarned) 

I have this amazing sister. She's about five years older than me. When she met me, apparently she wanted to throw me in the trash. We were not the kindest to each other, growing up.

I pestered her. 
I knew how to push her buttons. 
I would get her in trouble, by saying she did things... when really, I was the one who started it...

She would push me, 
punch me, 
bite me... 

However, one day. One day we realized we had differences. We realized that we had different personalities, different ideas, different strengths and different weaknesses. On that day, we became friends. I can't tell you the exact time it happened or why, but on that day, we realized that we needed each other. 

I realized she was: funny, loving, caring, crazy, spontaneous, daring, fearless, brave... special... 

I have a million stories I could tell about my sister. Some of them are funny. Some are sad. Some are personal. Some are secrets. Some are embarrassing. But that's what sisters are. Story keepers. Story sharers. Story tellers. 

This same person has been fighting for her life, for the last week. Since last Wednesday my big sister has been in the hospital, fighting to live. She entered the hospital last week with double pneumonia and H1N1. She's been on a respirator, paralyzed, sedated, and fighting to live. 

I've spent the last week, trying to be some of what she is: fearless, loving, caring, brave... I feel as though she is much better at these attributes. Instead I stand by her bed sad and fearful. I cry. I sob. I beg her to breathe. I ask her not to leave me. I am selfish. I realize that. But I need her still. I have so much to learn from her. I want her to teach me to be a better mom, a better person, more daring... more fearless. We have too much to do. 

As of today, she is improving some. We are hopeful she will be weening off of the vent soon and she will be able to live a wonderful and FEARLESS life. 

I am hopeful. She is a fighter. The best fighter I know. 

I can't wait to talk to her and tell her all of these things. I can't wait to tell her how I feel about her. That I admire her more than she knows. 

I love you, Michelle. Forever. 

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

It's my Birthday...

Today I'm 28 years old. Before you all send me messages telling me what a "spring chicken" I am, please remember that when you use a phrase like "spring chicken," you clearly look older than I am... So... Go ahead... use that phrase.

Anyway- to celebrate my 28th Birthday, I give you 28 things about ME:

1) In exactly TWO months I will finally graduate college...after 10 years of changing my mind and having babies keeping me from graduating. I am pumped. Can't wait to finally be DONE!

2) I love candy. No, you don't understand. I L-O-V-E candy. I hide it. Not well enough, though, because everyone knows where I "hide" it.

3) I call Soda Pop, "soda." I know, this doesn't seem foreign to many of you. But you see, in Ohio they call it "pop" and if you call it "soda" you're wrong. So, for many years (ummm about 22) I called it "pop," and then one day I realized I was WRONG. So, I now call it soda.

4) I throw up a lot. Yea. Gross. I know. But I have a really weird stomach. I always have. I used to puke as a kid every time I got nervous or scared. Thunderstorms were FUN in my house-- ask my mom. But now, if I eat something too greasy or something that I am not used to... watch out... toilet here I come. At least I make it to the toilet!

5) My kids are miracles. That's right. Gifts from God. I have to remind myself that sometimes, when they are getting on my nerves. But really, I want them to be on my nerves, because it's better than them not being here!

6) I am a daddy's girl. I am. Ask him. I still sit on his lap. And I hope my girl is a daddy's girl too, because it's the best!

7) I am SO glad spring is coming. I am so over ice and snow. Goodbyeeee ice and snow!

8) I am not sure I have 28 things to tell you.

9) 9 is enough. right?

10) I really love coffee. Has to be hot. HOT coffee. I don't mean warm... but HOT. Andy bought me a special coffee pot and special cups, to help keep my coffee as hot as possible. I have a leather mouth apparently, because I can't seem to get it hot enough!

11) I also have leather hands. I can put my hands in boiling water (almost) without any pain. Maybe it's just mommy hands.

12) Chloe has been calling me "Maymeeee" instead of "mommy" I love it!

13) I can't wait until school is over and I can read a real book. I want to read a REAL book.

14) I love horror movies. Good ol' B-rated horror flicks. The bloodier the better. I know. I'm a sick woman.

15) Whipper snapper. There's another phrase you may use, in order to make yourself look older than me. :)

16) My husband took me thrifting for my birthday. That's right. I rummaged around in people's old items, for my birthday. Guess what? I LOVED IT! :) I love thrift stores!

17) I have amazing siblings. I hope we never lose sight of the importance of one another. I can't imagine my life without them.

18) I am still a Steelers fan. Thanks for asking.

19) I do own a Packers shirt now. Courtesy of my husband, the Packers fan. I wore it once.

20) I think if I am asked what my favorite food is, the first thing I'll say is: Chinese food, no salad, no soup, no baked potatoes, no soft pretzels, no bread, no candy... no wait.... Can I have more than one favorite?

21) Now I want Chinese food.

22) I workout 5 days a week. To counteract the Chinese food. And because I like it. I really do.

23)  Jillian Michael's is my "favorite" workout. I like to pretend I am punching her, during the boxing parts of the DVDs. It's fun.

24) I can't wait to go camping.

25) Andy and I are celebrating 10 years of marriage, this summer. TEN. TEN!

26) We are going to New York City, for our anniversary. :) I can't wait.

27) Sometimes I wonder when life will slow down.....

28) and then I remember that if it were to slow down, then I might not appreciate it as much as I should. And I do... I appreciate everything and everyone in my life.