Sunday, May 31, 2009

Tales from the crib: Same Womb, Distinctly Different

I love telling people about the babies "in-utero" personalities and how they compare with today.

Laci:

Leading the way (in-utero), leading the way still today.
Favorite playmate (in-utero) was Seth, even true today.

Seth:

Moving non-stop (in-utero), moving non-stop (and getting faster by the day).
(In-utero) wouldn't leave Laci alone, today cannot keep his hands off of her.

Leyton:

Valued his personal space (in-utero), prefers to play alone or with me.
Chilled and relaxed (in-utero), relaxed and high on life today.

Same womb: distinctly different personalities.

We've started a new nighttime routine. Bible story and then each of them says a prayer, then I pray to close. Here's a run-down of each of their prayers:

Laci (loudly):

"Dear Jesus, thank you for our chichen and wice that you gave us for some food. Thank you for the food. We loved the chichen and wice, Jesus. And thank you so much for my fingers. AMEN!"

Leyton (whispering):

"Jesus, thank you for my bandaid over my bobo. It bleeding. Thank you so that it not hurt anymore with the bandaid. And the bandaid make it feel better. Amen!"

Seth (whispering):

"Dear Jesus, thank you for my pillow and blanket. Amen."

Same womb: Distinctly different.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Long Live the Apostrophe

I have wonderful news! The apostrophe key lives on. After much careful inspection, I was able to restore the "quotation" (see) key and the apostrophe key to its' proper working order. Actually, I just mashed it really hard until it stuck again. I am not sure if it is a "permanent" fix or just "temporary." And therefore, I can "quote" and "apostrophe" my readers to death! Long live the apostrophe key.

We had a really fun night playing volleyball at the church tonight. Robb pretended he was an Olympian playing sand volleyball and I, well, just tried to perfect my underhand serve. Volleyball is not my forte, but it is a LOT of fun. Every Thursday night from 6:30 - 8:00 the young adults at our church will be playing some kind of sport. We have had really impressive numbers...7...the first week...10...tonight. Now, don't snicker - we live in a small town and for a new event, that is excellent. Next week, I believe the vote is for flag football (which I haven't played since college). But, I will bravely participate and hopefully not get picked last.

On a different note, I have become the queen of supplements (well kind of). My nutritionist thinks I need digestive enzymes to help break down my food. So, I am taking digestive enzymes to help break down my food (did I mention I am taking digestive enzymes to help break down my food)? Oh, sorry...sidetracked. Which brings me to another really important discovery...vegetables in pill form. Now, why have I never known that vegetables (which I hate mind you) come in pill form??!?!?!? All these years, I could have been swallowing vegetables instead of A) not eating them at all (which I am naturally inclined to do) or B) gagging while trying to ingest them! But, the word on the street is that vegetables do indeed come in pill form. So, per my nutritionist, I am now taking digestive enzymes and vege-pills. He said he needed to "feed me." I think I chuckled that someone actually looked at ME and said "you need to be fed." Go ahead, laugh with me- it is quite funny when you know that I need to lose 25 lbs. Don't be shy...I'll give you a second to get it out.

...waiting...

Okay, are you finished already!

So, that brings my supplements to:
1) Acidophilus for digestive health
2) Digestive enzymes to help break down my food
3) Powdered cherries, asparagus, broccoli, turnips, kitchen sink, etc... to drink in the morning in apple juice.
4) "Green" food - which is basically brussel sprouts, asparagus, & alfalfa in pill form.

Apparently, by "feeding me" he is bringing my body into balance (as it has been WAY out of balance for several years). I am very appreciative, though, that someone is willing to teach me to do this naturally without medication. A blessing in disguise.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Gluten Free Day...hmmm...23!

So, its (yes I know I did not put an apostrophe there - my apostrophe key just literally popped off. So, no there will be no more of those on my blog. Apostrophes are out. And no, I am not sure if that is how to spell apostrophe...apostraphe...apostrafeeee.... And yes, I was BRIEFLY on the (I know) Spelling Team at my school, but those days are over. Just like the apostrophes days are also over).

So, its been 23 days minus gluten. My stomach problems have ceased altogether. I am no longer (and havent been since the 3rd day off gluten) on any medications for my stomach problems. I am not dependent on those drugs (thats a praise)! I am adapting quite well. I have become the queen of HOLD ON LET ME CHECK THE INTERNET TO SEE IF I CAN EAT THAT (and yes I would normally put that in quotation marks if the apostrophe key and the quote key were not, in fact, the exact same key that LITERALLY popped off approximately 2 minutes ago). So, yes now my quotations will have to be emphasized with capital letters I suppose (I realize it doesnt quite have the same effect-but whats a girl to do that now has no apostrophe key OR quotation key)!

So, its been 23 days minus gluten. A few items that have been traded out include:

Soy Sauce (Wal-Mart brand) is gluten free. Purchased some of that yesterday and made a very tasty chinese dish.

Ground beef, baby corn, bean sprouts, onion, green onion, and rice. Quite tasty...

Worchestershire Sauce (Lea & Perrins) is gluten free. I already used this, but now I make sure if I am eating somewhere else that they are using it as well. Some brands use malt vinegar which would send me into a nauseated, heaving mess.

Mustard (Frenchs ) is gluten free.

Annies Fruit snacks - Can be purchased at Whole Foods and probably Super HEB (mine came from whole foods). These are incredibly good, way better than any normal gummy snack.

Skinny Cow Ice Cream Bars - also gluten free (thank you Elizabeth Hasselbeck for that tip).

As far as eating out is concerned, well I am not stable enough for that I have decided. Contamination has proven to be almost inevitable as I have tried it several times and been unsuccessful. Even though I order foods that cannot possibly contain gluten, like baked potatoes etc... something inevitably makes me ill after eating out. Matter of fact, the only place I have successfully eaten out and not been sick was at Pappadeauxs Seafood. Now, I did get boiled shrimp (which never would have the opportunity to be contaminated), but they were quite accommodating to my illness. I told the waitress about my problem and she brought the manager out who was very sympathetic and offered me special preparations in preparing my food. She said she would be happy to fry fish or shrimp in cornmeal and make sure the grill is not contaminated if I wanted to change my order. I was grateful for someone who took my health to heart. Much appreciative to Pappadeauxs (even if I cant appropriately give it the apostrophe it deserves).

Jess

Brothers Day Out





Just thought I'd share some pics from Leyton & Seth's day out together.  Robb and I took them to play golf and then we practiced our bicycle riding.  Although we had to "hush" them a few times on the course, they had a great time practicing their skills.  They were pretty patient for 9 holes of golf.  And they provided pretty good comic relief as well.  Each time Robb took a practice swing Seth would say "Uh oh, Daddy missed!"  


Jess

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Connect The Dots

They were wrinkled like nothing my little girl eyes had ever seen. I was amazed at how the skin just hung and gathered in a pile, yet still remained attached to her arms. Oddly enough, I loved the way her hands felt. She was old and I was just a child. I was drawn to her like a magnet and one of my favorite things to do in her lap was trace the wrinkles up and down her arm with my finger. After all, I was always a connect the dots kind of girl.

My great-grandmother, was a beautiful woman (even with a name like "Johnnie"). So beautiful, that one day, a group of movie producers straight off the train from Hollywood tried to whisk her away with them. The story went like this: She and my great-grandfather were at the train station when some Hollywood producers stepped off the train and saw her standing off in the distance. They looked her way and said, "Look, there she is!" and offered her a life of fame and fortune if she would just pick up her life and move to Hollywood. "John Lowe," my great grandfather, said no like any sane man would have who wanted to hold on to his woman. They grew up together and dated from a very young age. She used to say their love affair started when he "pulled her hair at the picture show one day." Johnnie worked as a telephone operator when most women would not have dreamed of such a thing. John Lowe worked at the local lumber yard. Since they lived through the great depression, they saved every dime they had. One of her favorite things to do was shop (I guess I inherited that honestly). In her later years, our visits almost always included a trip to the Lufkin mall to shop for "panties and socks" (essentials in her eyes).

Although we thought that Corrigan, Texas had to be the most boring place on the face of the Earth, it is where "John Lowe" and "Johnnie" fell in love and raised their family. Even though my family lived in a small town growing up, Corrigan seemed slower and simpler than what we were even used to. It seems like a lifetime ago since I embroidered my first duck pillow on her sofa and swung with my cousins on her front porch swing. Thousands of days have gone by since I curled up in her lap for a good 'ole game of "connect the dots" with her wrinkles. I know that Heaven has touched her body, but I cannot help but hope Heaven left some wrinkles for me.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Baby Blogger

Isn't this the cutest baby blogger you have ever seen? I know I'm partial, but I just couldn't resist. Leyton quickly apprehended my computer while I was running to Laci's aid in the next room. Thanks to Robb for capturing this priceless pic.


Thursday, May 21, 2009

Got Friends?

No matter who you are, sometimes you just need a friend.  Someone that you can carry with you along life's journey.  Got friends?  If not, come join us:


First Baptist Church Liberty
Young Adult Sports Night
Every Thursday night 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
Family Life Center
*Childcare provided.  

We would love to get to know you better and walk through life with you.

See you there.

Jessica 

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Quite the Day

2 circles around the block. 9 floors for a parking spot. Down to level 2 crosswalk. Hang 1 left. Hang 1 right. Up to floor 12. Remarkable view of the medical center and a tiny white feather aimlessly floating through the air. Not attached to a bird mind you. I am sure he had plenty more to cover for his loss.

I went to the Urologist today because things haven't felt right since my surgery in December. Let's just say that my bladder, poor thing, has not been completely empty since DECEMBER! Since we are talking numbers, they drained 2 cups of urine out of my bladder (after I had already used the restroom). I was expecting a consultation and instead I got a minor procedure. Hmm...too bad minor doesn't mean that the pain was minor. It was not minor pain, just a minor procedure. But, I got to watch it all on a little black screen. Quite fascinating, but again...quite painful actually.

It's kind of like spring cleaning projects around my house. I set out to clean a year's worth of junk with high expectations that my house will be neat and tiday once finished. BUT, you start "cleaning" and the junk seems to multiply and you soon find yourself buried under papers, reading every note you find, looking at pictures, and finding things you forgot you had. Then, you have a bigger mess than you started with. It was a bit like this phenomenon today. I went in to the doctor to get rid of my pain and came out feeling worse than ever. Oh and my urine is blue. Now, that is just interesting. I'm not sure how it happened, but it is quite blue. Quite fascinating...but definitely quite blue.

Renal ultrasound on Tuesday. Back for a check-up in a month. I'm shooting for a pain-free vacation to Hot Springs in June. That gives me a month exactly to be pain-free and doctor-free. Time to bring out my healing scriptures again.

Jessica

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Tales from the Crib: Little Prayers, BIG impact

I thought I would share a teachable moment that happened in our house a few weeks ago. As you all know I have a wheat allergy (I know someone hit repeat again, didn't they?). Oh well. What you don't know is how God allowed us to teach the babies about answered prayer in regards to my getting that diagnosis.

About two weeks ago, prior to the wheat revelation, I was not feeling well. This day in particular had been much worse than normal. Kids are smart and not much get past mine. Leyton had already asked me several times, "Are you okay mommy?" and Laci had chimed in a few times too, "Your belly hurt mommy?" Not wanting them to feel the burden of my sickness, I thought it was a good time to let them pray with me instead of lying and saying "no I'm fine" when I really was not.

So, we prayed. I told them that "Yes, mommy's tummy hurt really bad- will someone pray to Jesus for me?" Laci said "I do" and we folded our hands. Her prayer was:

"Dear Jesus - please heal mommy's belly. Thank you. AMEN!"

So, I thanked them all for stopping their "playtime" and saying a prayer for me. The blessing is that a few days later I got the diagnosis of being allergic to wheat. I was able to go back to them and remind them of their prayer for me and then got to tell them how God heard and he healed me. I really enjoyed seeing their smiles as they realized that they actually helped me feel better with their prayers. Since then, I have heard all of them at one time or another chattering like little raccoons about Jesus "healing mommy's belly." Laci's chatter in the form of a song about Jesus, mommy's belly, and even Moses made an appearance in her tune. Leyton and Seth have chatted together about it while playing with Laci's dollhouse (shh...we won't tell Laci her dollhouse was invaded).

Your kids are never too young to learn about who God is and what He can do. I was six years old when I gave my life to the Lord and Robb was five. That is only a few years older than my children are today (wow- I cannot fathom that). Take advantage of your teachable moments! Little prayers sometimes have the biggest impact!

Jessica

Friday, May 15, 2009

Just look at his beady little eyes.  Or actually, don't look into his eyes at all or he might just get ya!  Ever seen an alligator death roll?!??!


You Get a Line, I'll Get a Pole





I just want everyone to know that I put my life at great risk to take this headshot today. My new employer needed a headshot and since I usually stay out of pictures, I had none on hand. We consider ourselves a pet-friendly business. But, some pets are not welcome.  Apparently, the rumor is true - a large alligator does indeed dwell behind our office.  Lurking and sun-bathing on the banks of our often flooded creek.  Kitty Cats beware - he looks mean to me!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Tales from the Crib: Scout Finch at our dinner table

It was a flashback to one of my all-time favorite books and movies. I worked hard tonight preparing a tasty, gluten free meal for our family that didn't taste like tree bark. Thanks, to a lovely box meal I found of ready to make Stroganoff, our dinner got off to a good start. Stroganoff and dehydrated green bean stix for the babies. The meal was going quite well until Laci spotted something that concerned her. Leyton was adding a little sugar to his stroganoff in the form of apple juice. I felt transported back to one of my favorite scene's in the movie "To Kill a Mockingbird". Laci was appalled at Leyton's assault on what was in my book, the best gluten free stroganoff I have ever consumed.

I could hear Laci just like she was Scout Finch herself, "but he's gone and drowned his dinner in syrup, He's poured it all over". Does that make me Calpurnia in this scene? If so, then I would have taken Laci in the other room and told her "There are some folks who don't eat like us, but you ain't called on to contradict 'em at the table when they don't. That boy's yo' comp'ny and if he wants to eat up the tablecloth you let him, you hear?"

Well, that boy wasn't our "comp'ny," and I didn't drag Scout, I mean Laci, anywhere. Although, I was a bit disgusted at Leyton's preference for Apple noodleoff. Oh well, he's our one of a kind baby boy (as he is one minute younger than Laci and Seth). Laci looked on in disgust, but then polished off the apple juice drowned stroganoff off of Leyton's plate before moving on to Seth's leftovers as well. Girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do!

Gluten Free Picks & Pitfalls of the Week

We'll start with the winners:

Bob's Red Mill Brownie mix - Although cooked it's a bit closer to cake consistency, this was rather tasty and did the trick for my sweet craving. I'll give it a 7 of 10 for flavor.

Snikiddy Snacks - organic mac n cheese puffs. Taste a little lighter than regular cheese puffs and a 9 of 10 for taste.


Pacific Natural Foods - For all your free range soup broths. I can go along way mentally on soups alone - I love soups of all kinds. This line is organic and gluten free. Also, comes in 1/2 sodium option. 10 of 10 on this.

Mrs. Leeper's - Fabulous! Beef Stroganoff made w/rice pasta. Wheat and gluten free. I have to say that this was BETTER than any Hamburger helper I have had. Go Mrs. Leeper! Just need box, milk, water, and butter. And quantity fed all of us with a lot left over. 10 for 10 on taste

Bionaturae - Spaghetti noodles. Made w/rice, potato, and soy. Organic and gluten free. These noodles tasted no different to me than regular pasta. Only difference is the water turns cloudy as the noodles boil. And do not rinse gluten free pasta. Otherwise, 9 of 10 for taste.

Kettle Chips - In case I forgot to mention these last post, 10 for 10 on taste. All kettle chips are no artificial flavors, no preservatives, gluten free etc... These are a really nice snack! Flavors of choice: Barbeque and Salt & Vinegar.

Not so fabulous for my taste buds:

Glutino's gluten free breakfast bars: ummm...can't say that I finished even half of it. Not for me, but maybe for some. 1 of 10 for taste.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Day 8 - Gluten Free

I am in awe. It has been a little over a week since I kissed gluten goodbye. What immeasurable suffering that sticky protein has caused me. I am in awe that "gluten" has been the culprit of most all the debilitating problems I have been suffering from for 6 years now. Now, that I have kissed gluten goodbye, my body is at total peace. Yes, endometriosis was a large contributor to my problems, but now I wonder what role this allergen might have played in the development of that as well. Today, I killed some time in B & N and read a little about my new found lifestyle. Book after book gave repeated testimonies of people healed from Multiple Sclerosis, IBS, Dementia, Blindness, Developmental delays, stunted growth in children, kidney disease, ulcerative colitis, simply by removing wheat and other gluten containing foods from their diet. Apparently, celiac disease can be genetic or jumpstarted from trauma: childbirth, surgeries, exposures to harmful chemicals etc... It is impossible to recount all the information I have poured over for the last week, but I do know what has happened in me. So, first I will have to give every detail of my symptoms. {Disclaimer: for the easily embarrassed - you might want to stop reading here).

Rt. side abdominal pain
Internal shaking feeling
Itching (all over body)
Cystic Ovaries
Lack of menses
Tingling of the neck and shoulders
Confusion
Brain fog
Chronic fatigue ( and no even before having triplets)
Sporadic breathing difficulty (often after meals)
Chronic diarrhea, abdominal pain, bloating ( a picture of beauty I realize)
Nausea (also mid-meal or shortly after)
Internal adhesions
Kidney stones
Cysts (ovaries, liver, thyroid, and kidneys)
Bladder pain
Muscle pain - chronic (head to toe)

So, after my hysterectomy alot of these symptoms went from daily problems to weekly problems. Some new symptoms also appeared and some got worse.

The bladder pain was a new thing. Also, the kidney cyst is new plus the thyroid cyst - also new. The chronic muscle pain got much worse since my surgery. The chronic abdominal swelling got better, but more acute and seemingly more meal related. The internal shaking remained, but the tingling got worse as well. So, what's my point?

One week wheat free and all my symptoms are completely gone! I have not felt like this since I was a teenager. Now, I have one more hill to climb (checking the kidney cysts) and I will finally feel well for the first time since delivering my babies. And I have lost 4 lbs this week (20 more to go...)!

Jessica

P.S. I would also like to say that twice this past week I accidentally ingested wheat (which was labeled as "modified food starch" once and another time in some steak seasoning I used) and both times I immediately got violently ill. Since I cut it out, my encounters with gluten have gotten surprisingly more extreme.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Motherly Love and All instincts Maternal

She is a great listener and as loyal as they come. Matter of fact, she reminds me alot of the biblical character of Ruth. Once she became a part of our family, wild horses couldn't drive her away (or triplets for that matter). She cooks for us, cleans my house, and most importantly cares for my children. "Care" is probably the understatement of the year. She loves my babies as her own. Not only does she love them, she listens to all my problems, encourages me to pursue my dreams, and even defends me with wild motherly rage (if it be necessary of course). Because of her own health problems, early in life, she never got the chance to give birth to children of her own. And after she met and married the love of her life, eight months later, she inherited four children from his first marriage. They were 4,5, 7 and 9.

She is a mother, despite her "buts" about not physically giving birth. She loves the Lord and that love flows directly out of her life. She is a picture of what "motherly love" looks like. And when you are around her, you feel loved.

Despite all of that, she always says that she wonders what "real maternal instinct" feels like. Since she didn't physically have kids, she doesn't believe that she physically has that instinct. So, since I like to define things, I thought we could clear this up once and for all. Since, we have already clarified that she is a "mother," we can clear up the instinct part.


–noun
1.
an inborn pattern of activity or tendency to action common to a given biological species.
2.
a natural or innate impulse, inclination, or tendency.
3.
a natural aptitude or gift: an instinct for making money.
4.
natural intuitive power.

Anyone that can stop runaway triplets in their tracks to keep them from harm, has instincts. Her ability to corral, motivate, and encourage my babies is a natural thing for her. She hops around my house like Mary Poppins snapping toys back to shelves and children into place (spit spot). To all of this, her humble reply to my praise is always simply "but I just like to help, that's just me." It is a supernatural gift to do what she does in my family day in and day out. And even more supernatural for someone to "enjoy" all the knitty gritty things that come with a house full of toddlers. The fact that she uses the term "dream job" just boggles my mind. As, trust me, many nannies have come and gone (some screaming) before her. So, now that it's all out in the open. I will say one final, thankful time:

Susan Marie - you encompass what it is to be a mother and to give motherly love. You possess all instincts that are maternal and we are blessed to have you as a member of our family.

Jessica

Friday, May 8, 2009

Thank You

I just wanted to say thanks for all the uplifting prayer I received today. I had a much better day today and certainly felt the difference with your help. A big Thank You!

Jessica




Thursday, May 7, 2009

Demoralized

Demoralize:
–verb 1. to deprive (a person or persons) of spirit, courage, discipline, etc.; destroy the morale of: The continuous barrage demoralized the infantry.

2. to throw (a person) into disorder or confusion; bewilder: We were so demoralized by that one wrong turn that we were lost for hours.

I've not been feeling very "blog happy" lately. I think I can accurately say that I am feeling "demoralized." Yes, back to my good friend Nehemiah. I love Nehemiah's story. He was like the little engine that could. He thought he could, and no matter what, he DID! It's such a victorious story about overcoming adversity. I think I like his story so much because I feel so far from that kind of success in a way. From this point on, my post will probably feel a bit like someone hit the repeat button- you've heard it all before. But, oh well...It's my blog and I'll repeat if I want to.

I have been so sick for so long. I am tired. And today I feel totally demoralized by Satan himself. The funny thing is that I recognize the attack, but I still feel caught in the trap. I've waited so long for someone - anyone- to come along and give me the "why" to all my sickness. And by God's grace alone, I have the why or several why's actually.

1) Endometriosis
2) Allergy to wheat

I am elated by the findings, but my mind is still in the gutter. Six years of illness has made me so mentally weak. Each morning I wake up and start "preparing" to be sick, to accommodate that little monster. And now I have answers, long awaited answers to years of prayer. I should be on cloud nine, I should be skipping somewhere, but I feel so grounded. I have forgotten what "normal" feels like. And although my week has probably been the best week, physically, that I have had since high school I don't know how to mentally be a healthy person. I am still mapping out restrooms and feeling totally trapped by things like traffic and meetings and obligation in general. Tonight, I feel totally demoralized by Satan himself. Tonight, I feel bogged down by thoughts of "kidney cysts" and the fact that left untreated, wheat allergies can lead to malignancies. I feel mad at myself that I have had pain on my right side for 3 years that several doctors said was "probably nothing." And I am sure you are saying, doesn't this girl read her own blog? Pull yourself together child, Nehemiah's story ends in victory! Where are your darn mustard seeds, woman?!?!?! And I totally agree with you...

Tonight, I am weak. Tonight, I want to believe that my healing is here, but I feel demoralized. Tonight, I feel deprived of spirit, courage, and morale. I feel thrown into confusion. I want my name and sickness to not ever be in the same sentence again. I guess I need prayer. So, tonight, me, my kidney, and my mind would appreciate your prayers.

Jessica

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Gluten Free on Day 3

Can I just say that "wheat" is in everything! Wheat is in EVERYTHING! Except for of course fruit, vegetables, and meat. Hmmm... the way God intended us to eat I suppose. The good news is that Super HEB has a gluten free aisle, so here are some things that I was able to purchase (I'll let you know their "taste" rating as I try them).

First, Bob's Red Mill brand carries gluten, wheat, and dairy free mixes for things like pizza crust, biscuit mix, etc... To check out more from them, you can go to their website: www.bobsredmill.com.

Second, made by Glutino are some gluten/wheat, milk, casein and egg free pretzels. I have to say, I think these taste BETTER than regular pretzels. They are lighter, but really good. They do contain soy if you are sensitive to that. You can check them out at: www.glutino.com I give them a 5 for 5 on taste!

{Insert: Tales from the Crib: All got real quiet as I was posting a minute ago, so I stopped to find Seth and Leyton in the bathroom dipping out the toilet water and dumping it on the bathroom floor. While also, "washing" our winter beanies in the remaining toilet water along with our new lacing cards they got for their birthday. Soaking wet from head to toe in toilet water - we will be taking a bath once they are out of time out!}

For you chip lovers (like me), HEB's Central Market Organics brand of tortilla chips are tasty and made with corn. I give those a 5 for 5 as well!

Jessica

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Nope, Not me!

To be counted on is both the highest privilege and the greatest responsibility. Someone told me recently that they were "counting on me." How that comment caught me off-guard. Counting on me? Counting on ME? Oh the pressure! Do I feel worthy to be counted on? Absolutely not! If this were a "not me Monday" (thank you Mckmama), then I would have to say that I cannot be counted on because:

I did not make a promise not to tell a secret and then break it, no not me!
I did not berate a friend to another friend because the first friend hurt my feelings, not me!
I did not hush my children's sweet talk tonight because I wanted to hear Simon's critique's on American Idol tonight, no not me!

Fine, you caught me, I am NOT worthy in any way to be counted on (as you already know). But, I do hope that maybe learning from my "not me's" you can be helped in any way you need.

Specifically, this dear friend and I were talking about depression (if you have followed me from the beginning you will remember that birth control + me = me in a crying puddle on the floor). If you've never experienced depression, I don't expect you to understand. For the other millions of you that have, sometimes realizing you are not alone is a big step in healing your mind. And in the spirit of a "not me" Monday on a Tuesday I am not going to tell you that:

Jesus can be counted on. I also won't tell you that if you are suffering from depression today He can heal you in an instance. I also won't tell you that He has freed me several times. It wasn't one time when I was on a walk and He told me to praise him and instantly I was free, it also wasn't one time by rebuking a spirit of confusion and I was instantly free, and it also wasn't by throwing my birth control in the trash. Nope, not me! I won't waste my breath to say that I know a friend that sticks closer than a brother, that answers my prayers sometimes before I even have the words formed with my mouth, or that I have come to know as my Healer, my Deliver, and my Friend.

Nope, I won't tell you any of that...

Jessica

Monday, May 4, 2009

EXTRAordinary

Today was a very good day. I thought I would share.

This morning I went to have a blood test done to test for food allergies. The receptionist told me it would be $200 out of my pocket for the allergy test alone. Then, of course, payment for my doctor visit. When I got there, since I paid in full last time (forgetting to give my insurance card), I actually had a $68 dollar credit instead!

So...

After finding out I was allergic to wheat, I got to use that money that I saved to go by Super HEB and buy me some "gluten free" foods. Although most people might consider finding out you have a wheat allergy a bad thing, I consider it to be a "mighty revelation" as the discover probably rounds off my healing in full. The truth always sets us free! Wheat allergy for me = freedom from daily illness! YAY!

So...

After finding out I was allergic to wheat and buying gluten free groceries, I drove back home to unload them. Apparently I set my cell phone on the bumper of my car to unload them and forgot. Unloaded, got in my car, and drove the 2 miles up the road to the office. Not knowing that I had left my phone on the bumper, I was in the office no less than 5 minutes when I got a phone call from my nanny. She called to tell me that my phone was at the verizon store...huh? That is what I said. Apparently, my phone flew off my bumper somewhere in between and landed at the feet of a passerby from Louisiana. My nanny, having forgot to ask me a quick question, called my phone to discuss and a man answered. He told her that he found my cell phone on the side of the road and was returniing it to the Verizon store! What a nice man (I prayed a blessing over him promptly)!

So...

After finding out I was allergic to wheat, buying gluten free groceries, and flinging my cell phone off my bumper onto Hwy 90, I called my doctors office to discuss a bill. Now, in December I had a hysterectomy and hernia repair. I was calling to set up payments to pay my $5,000 bill. The lady informed me that since they had to get a new tax id number, they were having to absorb some of the procedures in the month of December. They chose mine. I don't owe them anymore money! Bill wiped clean!

What an EXTRAordinary day!

Jessica

Wheat Allergy Anyone?

I have one. Who knew?!?!

Golf Anyone?



Sunday, May 3, 2009

Rails

For her, it's about rails. Every move she makes depends on the presence or absence of them. If there are steps, she needs a rail to help her get up them. If there are steps and no rails, she stays home. My grandmother's every move centers around steps and rails or the lack of them because she has back problems. Rails occupy most of her thoughts because steps occupy most places she needs to go. If it wasn't for steps, maybe she wouldn't have to think about rails so much. If it wasn't for her back problems, she probably wouldn't think of rails, steps, or the fact that her back hurts daily.

Since I had the babies, "bathrooms" have occupied most of my thinking. If I didn't have severe GI issues, then bathrooms probably wouldn't have consumed most of my thinking for the past 3 years. I can tell you where most decent bathrooms are from here to San Antonio. Buckees has the nicest restrooms around really. :) I prefer fast-food bathrooms to be sick in over gas stations (for sanitary purposes as you can probably imagine). But, of course, bookstores like Barnes & Noble are best for days of repeated sickness. Read a magazine, go be sick, read a book, go be sick again. Thank you B & N!

Post hysterectomy, I do not have to think about bathrooms quite as much. Post hysterectomy I can think about more normal things like birthday parties and trips to Wal-mart, swine flu , ya know...normal things. Some days it is really difficult for me to think like a "healed person". But, I know the work has been done. My healing is here. And although I am not a "name it - claim it" believer, I do believe that the healing work in my life is complete from God's perspective. Sometimes it takes awhile to see things come to fruition on Earth, but that doesn't mean God changed His mind. Even today, when my test results said I have a "complex cyst" in my kidney and need to have it checked. Even after that report, I am healed because God told me so. I am not going to pretend that those results didn't make me concerned - they did. But, what better way to vent my fear then blogging, right? So, if you would please send up a prayer tonight for me and my kidney, we would both appreciate it. Because, honestly, I do not want to think about bathrooms or cysts tonight.

Jess