Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Thank You

I finally feel like this chapter of pain and healing are coming to a close.  Thank you Father!  Notice I said this chapter.  I realize another will be just around the corner and that will be fine too.  The lessons learned through this season are too numerous to count.  Yet they were incredible.  We have learned to lean on the Lord more through this then any other time or trial in our lives.  The trust built in our relationship with God our Father has deepened.  That alone would have been plenty, but He is so good to us.  We were blessed with dinners, help with our bills, prayer and hearts that truelly cared.  Thank you everyone of you.

I am sure that in the course of our lives we will be reminded of each blessing, each lesson.  God has a way of building our hearts stronger upon each trial.  They aren't just random happenstance with no meaning.  Even for those who don't believe, it's still God who is leading your life, calling your name, waiting for you to see that He was there all along.

I've been back to work for two months now.  Just last week me and my baby took a hike that I haven't been able to even look at for almost two years.  Walking through the mountains, the towering pines, I felt like I was finally back.  Able to move and do the things that I love so dearly.  All praise to my wonderful healer!

What's ahead?  Been working out and trying to get back to my before weight and it seems to be going pretty well.  I am bound and determined to get back to 'me'.  My goal is 20 pounds and as of last Saturday I had lost five. 

We have a wonderful new kitten, her name is Xena.  She was dropped off at hubbies work while I was off work during the summer.  We nursed her back to health and when there were no takers my beautiful husband asked if we could take her home.  So that's where she is.  That entire situation was another blessing...  I had this whole in my heart after surgery.  I was trying to ignore it, but you know when you physically can't have babies anymore you feel kindof empty.  It really stinks.  I was beginning to wonder if I needed to talk to someone.  Then this little furball was dumped off and I spent on hour or two everyday at his work just being the momma to this little orphan.  I prayed for her health and thanking the Lord for this cute little distraction.  It was perfectly what both of us needed and God knew it.  So she came home.  Guess we got a baby afterall.

Until next time...count your blessings, you'll be surprised at how much God has seen you through lately.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Our Dreams and God's Plans

Lately our lives have been an emotional rollercoaster punctuated with tremendous blessings.  You see, when me and the hubby got married, like most couples, we wished to add to our family.  Though before our wedding we found out that I had a fibroid tumor and that pregnancy would be difficult if not impossible until it was removed.  So for the last two years we have prayed and searched for an answer.  The tumor proving to cause much more then a hinderance to our plans.  With it came pain and large amounts of blood loss. 

Last year it looked like we had the answer to at least part of the problem.  We had read and investigated a new procedure called fibroid embolization where a Radiologist can decrease the blood flow to the fibroid and since it would not have anything to feed on and grow, the bleeding would be back to normal and the fibroid would shrink and die off.  That was in August last year and seven months later I was still having the same symptoms. 

In April we went to the doctor after our last updated sonogram to talk about removing the fibriod (myomectomy) or having the same embolization procedure one more time in the hopes of being able to have a baby sometime  in the near future.  Our hopes that day were dashed with a doctor who not only didn't recommend either procedure but said he would not do it, said I needed a hysterectomy but without clear communication as to why.  So our search to understand what has happened inside of me took another turn as we sought out people who could explain the sonogram reports and recommendations to us.

After speaking to several different doctors we knew that this last doctor had been correct we just hadn't understood why.  It turns out that my fibroid is about the size of a large grapefruit and my uteris is enlarged also.  And with where it is positioned in relation to where I would carry a baby, its really not a good idea.  We did have a wonderful reconstructive surgeon tell us that he could remove just the tumor and (serious, I didn't know they did this) reconstruct my uteris.  But that it would be a lot of down time, alot of blood loss during the surgery and with no guarantee that I would be able to get pregnant much less carry the baby full term due to the injured area.

They gave us percentages for different scenarios and we all know that God doesn't need percentages, rather just for us to get out of the way.  We do feel that this is where He has directed us.  We prayed to be healed and this will heal the problem.  With it our plan's are changed and replaced with God's plan instead.  So we are waiting for them to call with a surgery date for me to have a hysterectomy. 

It is with a heavy heart that I write this yet my heart is overflowing with the joy of the Lord.  Let me explain...our lives are filled with hopes and dreams.  We start off in new directions asking the Lord to bless them, not knowing in what way that will be.  We have prayed and family and friends have cried and prayed out to the Lord, our wonderful God, for us to have a child of our own, to add to our family, to share our love with.  And it would appear that even before we started on this journey God knew that our plans were not to be.  That doesn't mean He doesn't love us, but I know that my God is a great big God and that if He has closed this door, there is another waiting wide open for us. 

We have seen God bless each step of this journey.  With friends who are willing to give of their time to explain "doctor talk" to us.  Parents who just show up when they are needed the most, not knowing why, just following the prompting of the Holy Spirit.  Doctors willing to talk to us until all of our questions have been answered even giving us direct lines to call if we have questions after we leave (who does that any more).  Prayer from so many people, even some prayer partners that I have never met.  Hospital bills being reduced to very managable sums.  And simply the partnering of other couples, Pastors and their wifes, other Christians, family, and friends willing to remember us in their prayers.  We have felt everyone of you.

So as the tears fall for those dreams that are slowly fading away, they are replaced with dreams that I don't even know yet.  You see, we have a beautiful daughter who is about to enter her Senior year in high school, who's life has slipped by us so quickly .  We have children at church that we love, adore and teach once a week.  We have a new neice that is just barely a year old with newlywed parents who could use help taking care of her.  And we have each other and all the time in the world to fall deeper in love with as we get to know each other more intimately. 

If I found out tomorrow that I was pregnant would I be happy?  Overjoyed is more like it.  But I wouldn't forget what I've learned along the way.  Nor, will not being able to have a baby with my beautiful husband take away the awesome gifts that God has bestowed in our lives.  I mean, can you believe it, I am actually married to my best friend.  It really doesn't get any better then this, at least not on Earth.  Besides, Tov says that maybe we can afford to go see the 24 hours of LeMans Race now!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Tax Help

I know that a lot of us are hurting, out of work, or our work has been cut and are in need of some inexpensive, if not free, advice on filing your tax return for 2010. So I thought I’d pass on a few tips and tidbits of information that may be useful in filing your tax return this year.

First and foremost, please pray and trust the Lord to provide fully for you in your situation. Sometimes in our money shortfalls we are tempted to take matters into our own hands and embellish some deductions that are not ours to take. Remember, nothing is hidden from God. He has a plan to bring you through this and will be faithful to do so. And because He is God, He only needs us to be faithful in our trust of Him and who He is.

With that said here are a few website sites you may find useful:

Believe it or not, the government does want to help you and you can file your tax return for free on their website. You can also call them for help in filling out the tax return. One thing that is important, any information that they provide to you you should get in writing. Whether they send it to you in an email or by snail mail, get it in writing and hold on to it. That way if you are ever the target of an audit or they say that you owe a different amount of tax you can show them that you did as they had advised and you will not be liable for that amount. Of course that only applies to any advice they give, not to the whole return. But its helpful to know nonetheless.
Also, for the IRS they recommend calling them in the evening when the rest of the United States offices are closed. Calling during the day will have you on hold for quite some time.
For low income families there is an Earned Income Credit that is available on the IRS Tax Form. The IRS reports that many families don't know about this credit that puts money back into your hands. In some families it could add up to about $5000.00 each year. Call the IRS and ask them about it. This is money they have made available to help us. Take advantage of it. That what its there for.

And for small businesses there is free help also:
This is the website for the Small Business Development Center (SBDC). They provide all types of FREE training, counseling, resources, etc. The consulting is one hour each but is unlimited. You can get as much help from them as you need. They even have free QuickBooks training, other accounting companies charge $75-150 per hour for this service. Whether you are new in business or struggling, they are there to help. As are all of the government sites.

God bless you. I hope this information provides you with some other alternatives to filing your tax returns and seeking the help you need.