Two Seconds

Last night I had a terrible evening/night. As a paraplegic, I have had severe muscle spasms for the past 30 years. Without feeling anything from the waist down, it does not make a lick of sense that you could stick a knife in my leg and I would not feel the blade; yet I experience excruciating pain with every muscle spasm.

How is it possible to feel pain where you do not feel pain? What’s the point of paralysis if I’m going to hurt? I can’t walk. So at least let me have zero pain. That seems fair, right? Oh wait… no one ever said life would be fair! 😵‍💫

Unable to sleep and wanting to cry from pain, last night I began to time the spasms. They were approximately two seconds apart. They began around 5pm and ended around 4am. Just to fall asleep, I took 7 muscle relaxers, 4 Advil, and 2 Tylenol. And a partridge in a pear tree.

I wanted to crawl out of my own skin from exhaustion, irritation, and agony but instead read a book and watched Hulu in hopes to distract myself. (Yeah, that didn’t work.) I got out of bed hoping that changing positions would help. (It didn’t.) I ate a piece of chocolate. (That actually did help for one second.)

But then a single second later, I was smacked with another wave of pain. I went back to bed before I stuffed my face with 7,000 calories of chocolate.

Over the years, I learned to live with the constant pain and frustration of my legs tightening and jumping. I have broken bones from spasms, fallen out of my wheelchair, and spent many sleepless nights. I took numerous pills to control the spasms but they just left me feeling like a zombie.

Desperate over the years, I tried different things to end the spasms. I went to therapy, bought a standing machine to stretch my muscles, changed medications, and even had nerve blockers in any attempt to stop the pain.

Raising three children, being a wife, volunteering at church, taking care of a home, cooking meals, doing laundry, going to sporting events, school activities, and maintaining relationships continued to happen all while living in constant pain and taking strong medications. I know at times my personality left a lot to be desired as I was short tempered, irritable, depressed, anxious, and impatient. My husband and kids probably endured the brunt of my mood fluctuations.

It was hard. Life was hard. And I was weary.

But then my doctor offered me hope. He suggested I try Botox treatments by having injections put into the muscles of my legs. He sent me to a spinal cord specialist, and I began the treatments of injections every few months.

My life changed immediately. Botox stopped my spasms almost completely. I no longer needed so much medication, going from 28 pills per day to 1 1/2 pills per day. I did not have constant cramping and discomfort. I slept at night without levitating off the bed. It was a miracle! After 27 years of living with torture, the emotional roller coaster wasn’t as wild of a ride. I could think clearer without a row of pill bottles that said “will cause drowsiness.” I felt like a new person. It felt like freedom.

And bonus… I had wrinkle free legs.

Unfortunately my doc never agreed to save any for my face.

Three years I lived pain free. My brain and body forgot about the 27 years of pain. Until my insurance denied my treatments. Fighting the company did not work, and I had no choice but to quit getting the injections.

Each set of shots cost $13,000 which I get is EXPENSIVE! When someone at the insurance company stamped “not approved,” they did not think about the person on the other end of that form and what they were deciding about their life. Their health. Their mental well being. Bottom line… it was expensive and deemed not worth it. But they were worth every single penny to me.

Sadly in the past few weeks, the spasms have been returning, and they gain in strength and intensity every day. I will just put it out there that it is arduous! I do not want to go back to that exhausting, wearisome, frustrating, painful, annoying, crappy, and burdensome life! (I feel a two year old tantrum coming on just thinking about it.)

This is the part of my blog where I switch from a difficult situation to how God has worked in my life. What He has taught me through the difficulty. How I can choose to glorify Him despite the trial.

But at this moment, I am laying in bed jumping and hurting and facing another sleepless night with these dang spasms, and I can only pray “please God…”

  • Please help this pain stop.
  • Please let the medication kick in soon.
  • Please allow my new insurance to cover my treatments.
  • Please give me rest. I’m tired.
  • Please remove my frustration and replace it with a heart of thankfulness.
  • Please do not allow my heart to become angry, bitter, or depressed. Instead fill me with the fruits of the spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control).
  • Please God… use this to make me more like you, Use this experience to touch someone else who is struggling. Use my life to give you glory.

It is easy to make it about me when I am feeling pain every two seconds. It is hard to think about anything else when you feel that radiating, constant pain. It consumes me, making it a challenge to think about anything else. Therefore, my biggest “Please God” is that I do not make it all about me.

God first. Me last. Please God.

Live your –

Have you ever gone to a cemetery and read the names and dates on the tombstones? The dates signify the day of birth and the day of death. But have you given thought to what signifies the person’s life… their daily, 24/7, 365 day a year LIFE. The ups and downs, adventures and uncertainties, successes and failures, joys and despair… those are all signified by a little symbol that doesn’t tell us a single thing about that person… the dash (-).

At the end of my life, my dates will be September 21, 1968 date to be determined. But no one reading those dates on my tombstone will know anything about my life. They will not know I was a:

  • Believer
  • Wife
  • Mom
  • Mother-in-law
  • Wheelie G (Grammy on Wheels)
  • Daughter/Daughter-in-law
  • Sister/Sister-in-law
  • Aunt/Cousin/Niece
  • Friend
  • Volunteer
  • Paraplegic

Nor will they know anything of my personality traits:

  • I am talkative (Although I prefer to say friendly.)
  • I’m an open book (I will share just about anything about myself… sometimes too much.)
  • When I get annoyed, it’s over in a flash but I feel terrible and guilty for days.
  • I am a people pleaser and have trouble saying “no.” (Steve, my husband, says I can’t say no to anyone but him! That is probably pretty accurate.)
  • I am an extrovert. I get my energy from being with other people. I like small periods of being alone but not too long.
  • I overthink things. If someone makes a comment, I will think about it for days, dissecting every word wondering what they may have meant.
  • I am honest. I can’t lie. You will know if I try because my face gives me away.
  • I love to laugh. It is therapy for me.

My dash will not tell anyone about my quirks:

  • My pillows have to be perfect on the couches. My house can be dusty and cluttered but my pillows must be straight and fluffed.
  • I am slightly obsessed with cinnamon and love my house to smell like cinnamon. I get teased about it by family & friends regularly.
  • I love, and I mean LOVE, reality (I do question the word reality) television! I like everything from Survivor to Hoarders. Watching glimpses of people’s lives enthralls me and captivates my attention.
  • I have too many clothes. I have fat clothes, skinny clothes, and in between clothes. I’m afraid to get rid of the fat clothes just in case. The skinny clothes are my motivation. But the in between clothes are my go to’s most days.

My embarrassing moments aren’t told in that tiny symbol:

  • Laughing so hard, I peed my pants on a first date. There was not a second date! 🥺
  • I went shopping at several different stores only to discover I had a bra dragging from behind my wheelchair the entire time! And it was a big ole granny bra too, not a pretty, frilly one from Victoria Secret.
  • The Easter Bunny saw me completely buck naked once. (That story is in my blog, Story Time.

Seeing my tombstone won’t show my favorite extracurricular activities:

  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Napping
  • Going to yard sales
  • Listening to people’s stories
  • Serving and volunteering
  • Party planning

It won’t tell about the people I love:

  • JESUS – I am beyond thankful for His gift of grace & salvation!
  • MY FAMILY – they are my heart, my favorite people to spend time with, and the ones I would lay down my life for! My husband, kids, and grandkids are my joy plus I am blessed greatly by an amazing extended family (parents, siblings, in laws, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews). I hope when I’m gone, they will know how deeply I loved them.
  • MY PEOPLE – I have had many people that have walked my journey with me and I treasure each friendship. Some have stayed in my life while others were only there for a period of time, yet all have a piece of my heart.
  • MY INNER CIRCLE – my close group of friends who pray with me, speak truth to me, love me, and encourage me… I am forever grateful.
  • MY KIDDO’S – those special kids (many now adults and my friends) who I had the privilege to have in my home, led in a small group, had in youth group, taught in Sunday school, or held in the nursery, you will never know what an honor it is to be part of your life. I love you “oodles!”

Anyway… you get it! The dash illustrates so much! My dreams (to see a baby born), my fears (being alone), my adventures (daily life as a paraplegic), my joys (seeing my kids do what they love), my pet peeves (people talking about me behind my back), my character (honest, dependable, loyal), my bucket list (going on a missions trip), and the list can go on and on.

When I leave this world some day, the essence of my life will be encapsulated in a tiny symbol. People won’t know I make my bed every single day or always stay up too late and struggle to wake up in the morning. They won’t care that I like the toilet paper to go under, not over (I know that’s the unpopular way). No one will know that I love freshly washed sheets or that I still can’t sleep on Christmas Eve. And my dash will not show that I spent most of my life sitting rather than standing.

It is inevitable that someday we will be gone from this earth. I praise God I am promised the gift of eternity in Heaven with Him. Until then, however, here are a few ways I want to live the rest of my “dash.”

  • Love people as God loves them. Seeing others through HIS eyes rather than my own.
  • Intentionally pour into people. Listen to their life stories. Encourage them. Care for them. Love them. Pray for them. Serve them.
  • Forgive. Offer grace. Just like He has done for me.
  • Be someone who gets to know the heart of others rather than making a quick judgement of whether they are worthy. I’m not worthy but Jesus loves me!
  • Be thankful. Gratitude, rather than complaining, can transform your perspective. I want to see life with a grateful heart.
  • Stop worrying about people’s thoughts and opinions about me. Stop overthinking. Stop people pleasing. (This is a very big one for me )
  • Give more. I have been blessed and want to see the needs of others and generously give, whether it is giving time, money, prayer, or serving.
  • Love my family better. Not letting little things bother me but appreciating these amazing people for who God designed them to be.
  • Show my grand-babies the love my grandparents showed me. Give them memories of time spent encouraging, listening. and loving them. Invest in their precious little lives.
  • Spend time with my friends. I am thankful for the friends who pour into me and I want to cherish time with them.
  • Know God more. Spend time reading His Word and talking & listening to Him so I can do all of the above things. ^^ I certainly cannot do any of it on my own!
  • And while I know there are many days that I show my human side by being impatient, frustrated, and stressed over unimportant things, I pray that more days I exhibit the Fruits of the Spirit. (Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control)

So when I go to glory and my life is illustrated by a little dash, I just pray that people look back and instead of seeing me, they see Christ who was in me!

I like to add photos or memes to my blogs and googled images for “Live your dash” and this poem popped up. It is perfect for this blog!

30 Years & Counting

30 years

360 months

10,950 days

262,800 hours

15,768,000 minutes

946,080,000 seconds

That’s how long it’s been since I last walked.

“But count it all joy my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.” James 1:2-3

On January 30, 1992, I walked into the hospital to give birth to my first child. Married only 15 months, 23 years old, and healthy, I had been anticipating this day for months. 

After some crazy mishaps, an epidural, and only 4 ½ hours, I delivered our baby boy, Zachary. Looking into his little face and blue eyes, I knew that my life was about to change forever. But I had no idea of the magnitude of change heading my way.

As the afternoon wore on and evening began to settle in, I needed to use the restroom. After walking into the bathroom, my legs could not hold me up and I collapsed to the floor. Unable to stand up, I laid on the floor until my nurse found me. As she helped me back to bed, she said maybe the epidural hadn’t worn off but assured me I should be fine by morning. 

However, that wasn’t the case as the next day and the following days continued to bring growing weakness and numbness in my legs. Instead of getting better, it kept getting worse. Three days turned into a week which turned into two weeks which turned into a month which then became two months. At this point I could barely walk without falling; I had to use a rented wheelchair; I lost control over other organs like my bladder; and I spent every day lying on my bed or couch with my newborn baby, unable to walk or stand. These were difficult, trying months for both me and my husband, Steve.

I had gone to see different doctors and even had tests but no one could find anything wrong. One doctor went as far as to tell me I had postpartum depression so those long and lonely days had me questioning my mental health as well as my ability to be a mom. I spent my days knowing something serious was happening inside my body, however, not having answers left me anxious and depressed. 

While it took several months for the doctors to find out what had caused my slow but complete paralysis, they finally determined I had two large masses of blood vessels wrapped around my spinal cord (AVM’s). The extra blood flow from the pregnancy caused those masses to have a stroke-like effect on my spinal cord. The blood flow also caused an aneurysm which they think the epidural punctured. Once they found out what was causing the issues, they tried to repair the damage but were unsuccessful. I spent several weeks at Columbia University Hospital in NYC before being transferred for several months of rehab at Hershey Medical Center where I was taught how to function in a wheelchair. Then I was sent home to live in a 3 story, inaccessible row home in Reading and to care full-time for a five month old baby. Talk about life changing… I was scared to come home as I wasn’t sure I could do it. Be a wife, mom, homemaker from a wheelchair… the thought of it overwhelmed me!

But somehow I did do it only with the strength of Christ (a story for another time). It has now been 30 years. I’ve wheeled longer than I’ve walked. It’s become my life. But even after 30 years, paralysis is hard. But I’ve learned that we all have handicaps and hardships in our lives… mine is just visible.

Being paralyzed is more than just sitting in a chair. Some of my wheelchair hardships include:

  • Constant bladder infections & several intensive bladder surgeries
  • Muscle spasms that tighten my legs so much that I’ve broken bones, including an ankle on Christmas Eve
  • Countless stays in the hospital and leaving my precious family for sometimes weeks at a time
  • 23 surgeries
  • Medications that make me lethargic and foggy brained
  • Insurance fights
  • Wounds that have torn my skin which take months and even years to heal
  • Falling out of my wheelchair many times and being stranded on the ground
  • Van and wheelchair breakdowns and costly repairs
  • Ambulance rides, including one ambulance that broke down on the bridge into Manhattan
  • Constant body aches and pains from lifting my body with only my arms
  • The LifeLine Helicopter ride where doctors had 10 minutes to save my life
  • Not being able to go to people’s homes because there are stairs
  • Sitting alone at functions because the wheelchair seating is only for one or sometimes two
  • Waiting for the only handicapped bathroom while an able bodied person is using it and praying you don’t have an accident
  • Realizing you cannot get into your van because someone parked too close to your car to put your ramp down

These are a sampling of trials that have worn me down physically, emotionally, and even spiritually. On the days I am just weary of it all, I reflect on Isaiah 40:31 which says, “but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”

Over the years, as I have grown in my faith, my questions were no longer Why God? but rather… What if God called you to paralysis? What if He wants to grow you in ways you can’t imagine? What if He wants you to reach people that you would never reach if you walked? What if He allowed this for His glory? 

This change in thought required total dependence on God while surrendering my control and my belief that I deserved all the answers. Instead I had to learn to trust Him wholeheartedly, believing that He was (and is) working in my life and allowing myself to be vulnerable in my total reliance on Him.

Beginning a gratitude journal, I also began to see my trials as moments to praise Him for His provision, His goodness, His love, and His grace that He bestows on me continuously. My prayers began to shift from “me” focused to “He” focused as I began to thank Him for who He is and what He did on the cross. It began to shift my attitude to not only thanking Him for the good things happening in my life but thanking Him for the hard times. 

I believe that God is still using difficulties to mature me, to teach me, and to make me more like Him. I am not complete yet, not fully mature, not yet like Christ, but I know He is chipping away at my mess to refashion my character to reflect His. He’s teaching me to remain steadfast, unwavering in my faith. As storms come my way and threaten to knock me down, I will remain firm in my belief in the one who controls the storms! 

Besides the maturity that we gain during hard times, I believe that God gives us the opportunity to minister to others. I recently read a quote by Toby Mac that said “Your ministry is often found where you’ve been broken.” We can touch others who are going through similar trials. God has opened doors for me to meet people I never would have met if I was walking. He’s given me a story to share on both a public platform and one-on-one with those I encounter, often providing occasions to share how God has been faithful and present every step of my journey.

Quick synopsis of the rest of my story… After becoming paralyzed from giving birth to our oldest son, my husband and I adopted an energetic 3 year old from Romania, Alex. After a few months with two little boys, I became pregnant. Although abortion was suggested, we could not consider it and I gave birth as a paraplegic to a healthy baby girl, Morgan. Raising three children in a wheelchair, watching them grow into adults, marry their spouses, and begin their own families has been a blessing. I pray as I share the story of our family that it points to God who has written every chapter. 

{One thing I must add whenever I share this story… Although I became paralyzed after Zach’s birth, I never want him to feel as though it was his fault or that I resent any aspect of his birth. I praise God daily for this young man and for the gift of his life.}

So when the Bible says, “count it all joy,” it does not mean that our trials will bring us joy in the form of happiness; but rather we can find joy in what He accomplishes in our lives through the hard times. Being more thankful for who He is; becoming fully dependent on Him; sharing our testimonies for His glory; maturing and transforming to be more like Christ; and standing firm in our beliefs are all reasons to count it all joy when we have trials of many kinds.

But that isn’t the end… we also have the hope of eternity where all our pain, tears, hurt, and sadness will pass and we will be face to face with Jesus Christ, the author of our stories.

Oh I can’t wait for that day. 

I will hear Him say ARISE!

And I will!

A rare photo of me standing with Zach at the hospital.
How I spent my days… on the couch with my dog and baby.
The last photo of me standing and my brother is holding me up by my sweater.
Zach could always be found on my lap!
The day Alex came home from Romania and met his big brother, Zach.
The day Morgan was born! My sweet little family.
My people! I am beyond blessed!

Story Time

I haven’t written a blog in exactly one year. What could I write about since 2020 and Covid put a big ole kibosh on my social life? Would people want to read about all the Netflix series I binged watched (like 15 seasons of Gray’s Anatomy)? Who wants to read that I now do Target pick up and Door Dash because I have become more of a homebody? Or maybe the fact that I haven’t worn pants with zippers or buttons in a year might make some fascinating late night reading. Since the past year has been more quiet, I decided to write a blog looking back at a few of my favorite tales from my time in rehab.

After becoming paralyzed (29 years ago), I was sent to Hershey Medical Center for 8 weeks of rehab. I was in the hospital over Easter, 1992. At that point I was very weak and unable to be in a wheelchair for longer than 15 minute stretches. Easter morning found me in my hospital bed washing up behind my curtain with a wash basin. I was naked… in all my glory… washing up before I could get dressed for the day. Suddenly the curtain opened and there stood a 6 foot Easter Bunny! Shocked at the sight of a large costumed rabbit, I didn’t even cover myself up. I just stared. And this bunny, equally shocked, stared right back at me. It felt like we just gawked at each other for hours! Finally I came to my senses, yelled “Shut the curtain,” and covered myself up. A few minutes later, hearing the bunny move on to my room-mate, I yelled through the PRIVACY curtain, “Are you a girl bunny or a boy bunny? And where is my chocolate?” My room-mate couldn’t stop laughing and the bunny later gave me not one, but two, large chocolate Easter bunnies!

But to this day… I do not know the gender of that rabbit!

Easter bunnies still cause me moments of PTSD.

Also during my rehab stint at Hershey, I had the best room-mate. We both had baby boys at home and were paralyzed at the same time and at the same level. We had a lot in common and really just became the closest of friends in our 8 weeks together. As paraplegics, we did not have control of our bladders or bowels any longer. Learning how to deal with that was part of our rehabilitation but we often had accidents in those early days. One day we were sitting in our wheelchairs in our room when Tammy looked on the floor and began to freak out. She saw a puddle of urine and couldn’t imagine who came into our room and peed on our floor. She was disgusted at the thought of someone peeing on our floor while we were out and was spewing her frustration quite loudly. Suddenly she looked down and noticed a wet spot on her pants and quietly said, “Oh dang, it was me!” We probably both wet our pants again laughing at the new absurdity of our lives.

Laughter is the best therapy, especially when you are with friends!

One of the sweetest people I have ever met was my 1st shift nurse, Sue. She loved on all her patients and was affectionately known as Mama Sue. There was a young man, Gary, in the room next to me. He had a head injury as well as a spinal injury and wasn’t doing very well. I would pop in his room to talk to him every day as he wasn’t able to even use a wheelchair at that point. He was a funny guy who got a kick out of teasing Sue. One morning he saved the apple juice from his breakfast as he knew he had to give a urine specimen after he ate that morning. Unknowing that he had asked our 3rd shift nurse for a urine cup that he had poured his apple juice in to, Sue came in with a cup and used a catheter to get a sample. After she finished and turned to wash her hands, he switched the cups. Once she turned back around, he took off the lid and took a big swig of the apple juice. Of course she thought it was the urine and became very agitated, not sure what to do. My room-mate and I, as well as a few of the nurses, knew what he was up to and were listening outside his room. Once we all started laughing, she started hollering at all of us saying that she would not answer any call buttons for the rest of the day. (She still answered. We tested her.)

Gary passed away a few weeks later but his smile and humor brought joy to everyone.

I cannot look at super soaker water guns without remembering my days at Hershey Rehab. The rehab had a team that took the patients with both head and spinal injuries on outings to get assimilated with life outside of rehab. This was 29 years ago so the ADD was hard at work but life was definitely a lot different back then. These trips were both educational on how to deal with shopping, eating at a restaurant, people’s reactions, and getting around in a new way but they were also a pleasant change from hospital life.

One night we got into a bus and went on a field trip to K-mart and a local grocery store. My room-mate and I decided to buy large water guns. I don’t know what led us to that purchase but we had joked about getting even with the residents and interns who woke us up every morning at 5am to ask us the same questions. Needle in hand, they would wake us by poking needles in our legs saying “Do you feel this?” Sarcastic responses often followed like “Didn’t you learn the definition of paraplegia in medical school?” or “No… we didn’t feel it yesterday, we don’t feel it today, and most likely we will not feel it tomorrow.”

But the morning following our K-Mart outing, we were ready for them! We had our water guns loaded under our blankets and when they pulled out their needle, we pulled out our guns and shot them with a stream of cold water saying, “No, we don’t feel that. Do you feel this?” They did not laugh like we did. The following morning there was a sign on our door that said, “Do not disturb. Let them sleep.”

Win for the water guns!

We also paged the 3rd shift nurses to blast them with water. And we took our therapists hostage until they agreed to do something fun with us. We were tired of exercising with that stupid hand bike every day!

The guns were eventually confiscated.

Win for the rehab staff!

How we felt getting back at the medical students at 5am!

These are just a few stories from a long time ago. My months in a rehabilitation center learning how to live my life in a wheelchair may sound like a scary, overwhelming time period. AND IT WAS.

I was very young; separated from my husband and newborn; away from family and friends; weak and adapting to a new way of life; unable to walk or even use the bathroom; and dependent on others for simple daily functions. But the people who shared this experience with me, from my roomie to the nurses to the therapists made it an experience that I will never forget. I learned that even in the saddest times, there are moments of laughter. Even when we are feel alone and isolated, there are good people who come alongside you on your journey. And when things seem at their darkest, joy comes in the morning!

Dedicated to all the people who have made me laugh! And in honor of a friend… Gary.

My littlest love…

“Sometimes the smallest things take up the most space in your heart.” – Winnie the Pooh

A pudgy dimpled hand curled around my pinky; big blue eyes staring so bright and alert; chubby, silky cheeks that beg for a kiss; a soft sigh escaping after a full belly; ten tiny toes that wiggle when tickled; a little button nose that is the same as his mommy’s newborn nose; happy coo’s responding to my voice; and the warmth of his little body snuggled up against my shoulder as he sleeps so contentedly.

Innocence. Newness. Freshness. Simplicity. This is the precious stage of a newborn baby. For me, it is my favorite stage of life. Who can deny that there is a God when you look at every intricate and perfect detail of a newborn baby who grew in his mommy’s womb for nine months? It is an incredible miracle that points to the artistry of our Creator.

So clearly a new baby has entered my life. My daughter, Morgan and her husband, Jaiden had a baby boy almost two months ago. This little man made me a first time grandmother and he captured my heart immediately, as quickly as my own precious babies stole my heart many years ago. He lights up my day and makes my heart smile. He’s a perfect gift from God alone.

Bringing home my own children was amazing yet also overwhelming. The responsibility, the exhaustion, the unknown of being a first time, second time, and third time mom brought with it a set of anxieties and fears. Did I makes mistakes? Definitely. Did I do some things right? Hopefully. Did I screw then up? Probably. But there are therapists for that, right?

Becoming a grandmother is just amazing without the overwhelming. I loved being a mom and raising my children, yet I must say being a grandmother may be even better. All of the love. None of the exhaustion. Lots of fun. Much less stress. My job is simply to spoil him, cherish him, nurture him, enjoy him, teach him, listen to him, and love him unconditionally. I look forward to watching him grow and discover his world, listening to him chatter, reading him stories, taking him for rides on my lap, baking cookies (or buying Oreos more likely), picking Halloween costumes, waiting for Santa, going to Easter Egg Hunts, and watching Fourth of July fireworks. And then I can hand him back to his parents and head back to my quiet home.

The ordinary becomes extraordinary as you see the world through the wondrous and curious eyes of a child. That is what I am the most excited about as a new grandmother… watching this little one explore his world in one adventure after another.

One thing I was not prepared for was how stinking sweet it is to see your baby have a baby. Morgan is the youngest of her siblings by several years so she will always be my “baby girl.” To see her pregnant, labor, and deliver an 8 pound, 4 ounce baby blew my mind. She was so strong, brave, and controlled. Now to see her love this little boy, speak sweetly to him, gently cuddle him, and care patiently for him is an indescribable blessing. And the same goes for Jaiden as I watch him delight in his son and enjoy every little development. Watching your children have children is a gift. A priceless treasure. A small thing that fills my heart.

As a bragging new grandmother, let me tell you about this little bundle of joy. Lee Michael is 8 weeks old, chubby, content, smiley, and sweet. His temperament already seems calm and chill without fussing too long or too often, unless he wants food. He is content to look around and loves when you talk to him. He even answers with sweet little coo’s. He smiles a lot in the morning, especially if you tell him he is cute so vanity may be an issue down the road. He’s always kicking his little legs and moving his arms which makes me think Morgan will have two energetic boys in the house. It’s fun to look at him and see physical characteristics of his mom and dad (like Morgan’s nose and Jaiden’s eyes), but I can already see little mannerisms that take me right back to Morgan’s baby days like his calm disposition and the happy spirit. And I am sure Jaiden’s parents can find resemblances to Jaiden as a baby boy too.

Picking a grandma name was the hardest task for my new life role. As a paraplegic, I don’t define myself as just handicapped yet I do know that my 28 years of sitting in my chair has changed me completely. And I am thankful for the lessons I’ve learned and the people I’ve met from my paralysis. Therefore, I can honestly say that my chair is an integral part of who I am. I always wanted to have my grandchildren call me “Wheelie G,” but I was worried people would think it was weird; that maybe it would be too hard for Lee Michael to say; or maybe I should just be traditional and go with a normal grandma name.

But I am not a normal or traditional grandmother. I will be the grandmother racing him on his bicycle, letting him stand on the back of my chair when he’s too tired to walk, and speeding down ramps at top speed. So I will be Wheelie G to Lee Michael (and any other grandchildren that may come along some day) and this new adventure will be one thrilling ride!

Now look below for photos of the cutest baby on earth… my littlest love, Lee Michael. And I am not at all blinded by love. ❤️

Little Lee Michael
He loves his Mommy!
And he loves his Daddy!
My little bud!
Adventure is out there. -UP

I’m over it…

  • Covid 19
  • Coronavirus
  • Quarantine
  • Stay at home
  • Essential/Non essential
  • Pandemic
  • Social Distancing
  • Clusters
  • Hot spots

Those rarely used vocabulary words have now become our updated jargon. Our new normal is so different than what we could have ever imagined when we celebrated the start of 2020! And to keep it real… I am over it. Totally over it.

Over the winter months I was very busy and I kept saying, “If only I had time…” Suddenly I have more time than I know what to do with, and I wish I was busy again. When I was constantly on the go, I had lists of things I wanted to accomplish at home like cleaning out my closets, organizing my cabinets, decluttering my rooms, deep cleaning all the neglected corners of my house. My to do list was longer than hours in my days.

Now I’ve been at home for about 2 months and besides gaining ten pounds, all I’ve really accomplished is binge watching 16 seasons of Gray’s Anatomy and several seasons of Survivor. I have also read a few books (just to keep my mind working at minimum capacity) and slept around 12 hours a day. I feel like such a sloth, my new spirit animal. Please tell me there are others feeling the same way. Others who have not tackled their to do list and instead are sitting with a bag of chips in front of their TV. It cannot just be me, can it?

Can you imagine if we knew all this was coming on New Year’s Eve? If we knew we would be forced to stay at home, watching endless hours of TV, only going out to search for tissue to wipe your backside because crazies would hoard even the one ply. Or if we understood we would all start looking like Sasquatch because we wouldn’t be able to get haircuts, roots dyed, or eyebrows waxed. Or if we realized that we could watch church in our pj’s with no bra on (Yes, I do that now!) or that we would no longer know what it feels like to wear pants with a zipper and button because our wardrobe would only consist of yoga pants and T-shirts. If we knew what was coming, would any of us shouted Happy New Year or would we have been sitting in the corner freaking out inside?

I think the hardest thing about being at home is the isolation. I am a people person. My energy comes from interacting with people. (Maybe that’s why I am not accomplishing much. That lightbulb moment just occurred to me as I typed the previous sentence. 💡) Not seeing or interacting with people, especially not seeing my family and friends, has been the hardest part of the stay at home order. I want to go visit my mom, who is still grieving the loss of my dad and is isolated at her home with HGTV for company several hours away from me. I want to see my father-in-law interacting at church rather than alone in his senior living facility as the anniversary of my mother-in-law’s death approaches. I want to hang out with my sister-in-law wandering around Marshall’s or Hobby Lobby. I want to see my local kids and go out to dinner with them. I want to drive to Virginia to visit my other four kids like I had planned. I want to see the expanding baby bump of my daughter and feel my grandson kick. I want to be planning my daughter’s baby shower that was supposed to be at my house in May. I want to see my nieces and have them over for a sleepover. I want to go to lunch with my girlfriends just to chat for a few hours. I want to go to Target and aimlessly walk (okay… wheel) through the aisles. I want. I want. I want.

Yes, I realize how spoiled and selfish I sound. Trust me, I am thankful that I have a warm and comfortable home to stay in. I have plenty of food, including Oreos. I even have a few rolls of toilet paper left. I have activities like television, books, and games to occupy my time. I have technology and can see my kids, my mom, my friends on FaceTime or in Google Hangouts. I can watch church services online and talk to my youth group on Zoom. No one in my circle of close friends and family has been ill from this horrible disease. I am grateful. I am blessed. I am appreciative.

But today I’ve been blah and grumpy. And I think that’s okay. I think it’s okay to be down in the dumps and sad about the circumstances going on right now. I really think it’s okay to share those feelings and be real that we are lonely, scared, frustrated, bored, anxious, and over this new normal. It’s okay to say I am sick and tired of being in my house. I am tired of watching hours of mindless TV. I’m sad from missing my people. I’m depressed that I can’t travel to see my family. I’m over the loneliness. I’m bummed my daughter won’t get a baby shower. I am worried about my daughters-in-law still working in health care environments. I’m concerned about my daughter who is 10 weeks from giving birth to my first grandson. I’m scared over all of the conflicting news reports, especially as I head off to work in the public. I’m anxious about my friends/family’s safety as well as my own since I’ve already experienced exposure. I’m frustrated with it feeling like Groundhog’s Day. I am discouraged for those unable to have graduations, weddings, sporting events, even funerals. I am disheartened to see small businesses struggle and people lose their livelihoods. I’m grieved over those who have lost their lives or for those who have lost a loved one. It’s such a difficult time.

I am thankful that I can share my real feelings and fears with Jesus and that I can rest in Him when I’m weary and overwhelmed. God knows what is going on during this crazy time. In my life. And in your life. And He is still on His throne. I don’t need to fear. He’s got this. Yes, it’s still scary and difficult. But I will trust Him.

If you are hurting, be real right now. Reach out. To God. To family. To friends. Journal. Text. Call. Just reach out. If you need to talk or need anything, please ask. These emotions are real and it’s okay to say I need some help. I need to talk. I need to cry.

On the flip side, another way to combat those moments of struggle is to turn off the TV for a bit and look up. Take the focus off of you and check in on people. Call someone. Write a note. Drop off some groceries. Run an errand. FaceTime. Skype. Make some cookies for front line workers. Send a gift to a child who is missing school or to an exhausted parent. Thank a teacher, your postal worker, a grocery clerk, a sanitation employee. Send a card to someone in a nursing home. Be creative and give of yourself.

And continuously…

Pray. Pray. And pray some more.


Words have power. They can influence, discourage, build up, or tear down. They can create emotions like joy, fear, anger, peace, or uncertainty. They can transport you back to reminisce on old memories or allow you to anticipate the future. They can inspire one to greatness or bully someone into despair. Words can both ask for forgiveness and forgive. Words can show love or hate. They can give you all sorts of “feels.”

A few of my favorite words include:

  • Fervent
  • Grace
  • Discombobulate
  • Flabbergasted
  • Relentless
  • Holy
  • Curmudgeon
  • Pursue

A few words I don’t like are:

  • Snot
  • Shut-up
  • Moist
  • Puss
  • Dollop

However, there is one word that I think changes everything. A simple word. Just three letters. It’s a conjunction. And it contrasts what was previously said. The word is “but.”

I have a friend that often says “I don’t mean to be ugly but….”. I always tease her and say, “Buckle up because ‘but’ means the ugly is coming!” We all say, “Not to be rude but…” which translates to I am about to be rude. Or “I’m not judging but…” well here comes both judge and jury. That one itty bitty word discounts everything that was just said. I do it. We all do.

Yet as a Christian, I love the “buts” that completely transform lives. With Easter tomorrow, the phrase “but God” has been rolling around in my head making me mull over the lives that were turned upside down and sideways because of “but God.” So here a few of my thoughts as we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus tomorrow.

It started with Mary, a young teenage virgin, engaged to a young man, Joseph. She was going about her normal life, maybe helping her family by baking bread, cleaning their home, feeding the livestock, helping with her siblings while preparing for her wedding. Maybe she was sewing, knitting, or weaving domestic items to prepare her soon to be marriage. Suddenly an angel appears and tells her she is going to have a baby, and not just any baby. The son of God. WHAT? Who would ever believe that cockamamie story? No one. Not even Joseph. Until an angel appeared to him as well. This was a gigantic BUT GOD! He totally flipped this young couple’s plans, yet they faithfully trusted Him and they became the parents of the Son of God. He took a faithful Jewish couple and rocked their world in an unbelievable way.

How about Simon Peter? He was a common fisherman, an ordinary guy, seemingly impulsive, and maybe a bit brash. He was the one who cut off the ear of the soldier who was arresting Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane. He also was the one who denied knowing Jesus three times after Jesus was arrested. How could he follow so closely to Jesus for three years, listening to Him teach, studying His ways and then declare he did not know Him? Not once. Not twice. But three times. I’m guessing it was fear. I imagine after Simon Peter heard the crow caw, he was ashamed. Deeply and bitterly remorseful. We know Peter wept. To me, wept emotes the concept of crying to the point of mourning (or joy). It signifies an emotion that is palpable. You feel it in the depths of your soul. So what happened to this disciple who walked and talked with Jesus and later denied knowing Him? It’s certainly a but God story. He denied Jesus but God later used him to lead thousands to Him. He was temperamental but God used Him mightily until he was martyred for Christ’s sake. He didn’t deny Jesus again. He was a loud, boisterous, crass fisherman but God changed him to a humble, obedient fisher of man.

Don’t forget about Mary Magdalene, a woman who had seven demons in her which Jesus cast out. Imagine living with demons controlling your body and mind… talk about mental health issues. Dr Phil would have done a TV show about this woman. But God had other plans for her. After Jesus healed her, she followed Him without hesitation. She was present at His death and burial, and Jesus Himself talked to her on Easter morning when she found the empty tomb. He took a woman who was filled with demons giving her life a total metamorphosis. She was a true example of a life changed.

The thief on the cross is a great but God testimony. Jesus was an innocent man being punished next to two guilty men. One mocked him yet the other recognized that there was something different about Jesus. Something he wanted. Something he asked for. He deserved punishment for his crime but God showed mercy, knowing that his heart was repentant and his belief was genuine. Even in Jesus’ darkest moment of pain and sorrow, there was still something in Him that stood out to that thief. Now that is a great but God story as I believe that thief gained eternal life as he drew his final breath.

Not to mention the leper’s, the blind, the lame, the bleeding, the woman at the well, the rich man’s daughter, the deaf and mute man, Lazarus, Zacchaeus, the women caught in adultery, and the list can go on and on. People who Jesus met where they were, and they experienced but God moments that altered the course of their lives.

My favorite but God story is the one we celebrate this weekend. Good Friday is the day we remember what Jesus did for us. He endured unbelievable suffering from being beaten more times than one human could bear to having a crown of thorns jammed deeply into His head, afterwards being forced to carry His cross in His weakened, bloody state. Then He was nailed to a cross all while people who recently followed Him now mocked Him. He took all of our sins and shame and guilt onto His body willingly… He agreed to do it. He gave up life in Heaven with His father to do this. He gave up His kingship to become a human. His deep love for us held Him on that cross! Crazy. Unbelievable. Incredible.

But God didn’t end the story there. Yes, Jesus died on Friday but God knew what was coming on Sunday. The tomb was empty and Heaven rejoiced. Jesus arose because death was not the end. It was just the beginning. Because if we believe that Jesus died and then arose from the dead, if we repent from our sins and trust in His forgiveness, we will have our own but God story. Once we believe in the truth of both His death and resurrection, we are promised eternal life in Heaven. Are you ready for your but God moment? Are you up for a radical transformation that will flip your world upside down? Because He will!

A pair of shoes…

My dad died in his sleep on Thanksgiving morning, which was one of his favorite holidays. I got the phone call that morning from my brother and as soon as I heard his voice, I knew. While I couldn’t really wrap my head around it, I knew just from the tone of his voice as he said “Debbie” why he was calling. I wasn’t ready for that phone call. I guess I would never be ready for it. You can never prepare for losing a parent. While you know it will happen someday, you always assume someday is down the road. Losing my dad has been difficult. I will be fine one minute and then suddenly it hits me and sadness and grief rock me.

I had seen my dad ten days before Thanksgiving. My husband and I were going to be visiting two of our children and their spouses in Virginia for the holiday so we wanted to see my parents around Thanksgiving since we wouldn’t be there on the actual day. I remember my dad not looking quite right. As I hugged him before I left, I said, “Take care of yourself Dad. Your coloring seems off to me.” I told him I loved him and waved good-bye as we pulled out of the driveway.

I had no way to know that it would be the last time I would see my dad on this earth. I would have stayed a little longer. Hugged him a little tighter. Asked him to tell me a story from his childhood. Told him I loved him one more time. Thanked him for being a “dad” and not just a father. If only I had known… I would have said so much more.

Recently I was staying with my mom for a week, helping her as she struggles to find her way without the man who was by her side for over 54 years. I noticed my dad’s sneakers on the floor, next to the TV and close to his recliner. She said he took them off the night before Thanksgiving and she could not bring herself to move them. I have been unable to get those sneakers out of my mind. Those sneakers are a lesson to me. Actually to all of us.

I wasn’t there that night, the eve of Thanksgiving, but I imagine my dad taking off his shoes, sitting in his favorite recliner, turning on the TV (most likely channel surfing) and chatting and laughing with my mom, brother and his fiancé. He didn’t bother taking those shoes back to his room because he thought he would put them back on in the morning, excited about Thanksgiving and ready to eat all day long. How many of us leave our shoes thrown by the couch when we head off to bed knowing we will put them on tomorrow? Expecting there to be a tomorrow? Taking our tomorrows for granted?

But as my dad drifted off to sleep, he didn’t realize that God would be calling him home that night. He fell asleep on earth and woke up in Heaven. My dad didn’t have a tomorrow here but instead an eternity in Glory. He didn’t have a turkey dinner in Altoona but instead a banquet with the King of Kings. He went to bed with congestive heart failure, declining kidneys, diabetes and woke up whole, healthy and in the presence of Jesus. WOW! Can you imagine?

But the real story of the shoes is a reminder… a reminder that we do not know our last day on earth. We don’t know when we will take our shoes off for the last time. Or the last time we will say good-night to our spouse. Or the last time we will hug our child. Or the last time we will talk to a friend. We just don’t know those last times. So we need to make the moments count. We need to say “I love you” more often. We need to hug a little tighter. We need to put our phones down and have actual conversations. We need to stop rushing everywhere and start noticing those around us, whether it’s friends, family or even strangers. It seems cliche to say “time is fleeting” but maybe this phrase is overused because it is true. We aren’t promised tomorrow so maybe today is the day to BE

  • BE encouraging
  • BE forgiving
  • BE generous
  • BE gracious
  • BE compassionate
  • BE loving
  • BE honest
  • BE trustworthy
  • BE appreciative
  • BE genuine
  • BE patient
  • BE sincere
  • BE present

I miss my dad. I always will. He taught me many lessons during my life and with a simple pair of shoes, he’s still teaching me.

Mom, thanks for leaving those shoes where Dad left them. I know this is the hardest thing you have ever endured, yet you continue on with grace, showing all of us the true definition of strength. I am blessed to call you mom and friend! I love you!


Things that make me, a paraplegic, go hmmmm…

Handicapped Placards – Who decides who qualifies for a placard? I have sent in FIVE applications over the past two years and still have NOT gotten a renewed placard. Mine literally expired in March, 2017 and I cannot seem to get one. Yet I constantly see people who hop out of their cars from a handicapped space and stride into stores. I saw a woman come out of Target in 5 inch heels and get into her sports car parked in a handicapped space while I am driving around in my 12 year old, $63,000 Dodge Caravan retrofitted with a ramp, power seats and hand controls trying to find a space that will work for me to get out in my power wheelchair. Hmmmm…

Handicapped Dressing Rooms – Yes, I understand these larger rooms are spacious and prime real estate amidst the smaller rooms. But if you can stand, walk and don’t have children in a stroller, take your possible purchases into one of the many smaller rooms and leave the one large one for someone who actually needs it. This also applies to bathrooms. Because speaking for many people who have paralysis, if you feel you have to pee, you need to pee almost immediately or you will wet your pants. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve almost peed my pants while waiting for someone who just likes a taller toilet and more space to pull up their pants. Hmmmm…

Handicapped Hotel Rooms – Honestly this is one of the most frustrating issues I’ve dealt with over the past 27 years. If I am going away, I immediately begin the search for a “wheelchair accessible” room that includes either a roll in shower or a bath tub with a tub bench. Yet often I arrive to my destination, only to find out there is not an accessible room available any longer. Recently I was told my reservation was simply a request and did not guarantee me a room. I replied that I called the reservation department and not the request department. This hotel then agreed to place me in a room designed for a deaf person but not for a wheelchair. It had flashing lights on the telephone and doorbell but not an accessible bathroom. They also told me that they only had one wheelchair accessible room left but they didn’t know if someone checking in later might need the wheelchair room. Now remember… I am sitting in a wheelchair in front of them at the moment but someone who wasn’t there could possibly need it. But hey… while I couldn’t take a shower, I could do my disco moves to the doorbell. Hmmmm…

Wheelchair Friendly – This is a phrase often used in small print when traveling. It means… if you are in a wheelchair occasionally but can walk, this building might possibly work for you. It’s kinda accessible but not fully. And if you are unable to walk and use a wheelchair 24/7, you’re screwed. Hmmmm…

In Case of Fire – Every time I ride an elevator and see the sign, “In case of fire, don’t use elevator,” I have to shake my head. While I get the theory behind the sign, I have to ask… am I just supposed to stop my chair at the top of the stairs, drop to the ground, and roll down the staircase if a fire ensues above the first floor? Hmmmm…

The Companion Seat – Every theater, show, movie theater or concert seems to have a handicapped seating section nowadays. People in wheelchairs are resigned to sitting in that one small section. But there is often a companion seat next to it. While I am sure it is meant to be thoughtful, it also means that I can never sit with a group of friends or family members whenever I go anywhere special. Apparently the disabled are only allowed one friend! Hmmmm…

Curb Cuts – I am quite certain that it is a job requirement for non wheelchair users to design curb cuts. In busy cities, they are often steep, bumpy, and slightly dangerous but add to it a 20 second count down clock to get up/down and across the street with a throng of hurrying people to make your heart pump a little faster. In NYC and DC, it is quite exciting when you are still crossing when the “walking” time runs out. Driver’s will not wait for your chair to make it across the street before horns start beeping and the “international sign of displeasure” is given. Hmmmm…

These are just a few things that make me shake my head as I venture into the world in a sitting position. I didn’t even mention the things that make me say “hmmmm” that have nothing to do with my life as a paraplegic. Maybe the next blog…

What makes you shake your head?

Beauty in the sadness

I haven’t written a blog since Mother’s Day. I have tried so many times but have been completely unable to put my thoughts and emotions down onto paper. My last blog I shared was about my mom and mom-in-law… two of the most amazing women I’ve been blessed to have in my life.

Shortly after that post (less than one week later), my husband’s family had to make the hardest (yet surprisingly easiest) decision to take the matriarch of their family, my mother-in-law, Donna, off of life support. It’s still hard to fathom how a seemingly healthy 78 year old woman could go from a sinus infection, to pneumonia, to Adult Respiratory Distress Syndrome to organs beginning to fail. How can you wrap your mind out of sinus issues leading to oxygen masks to being intubated and having a machine breathe for you? And then realizing that we needed to make a decision to remove the machines that were keeping her alive. That may have actually been the easiest decision. The entire family agreed that this feisty, independent woman would never want to live hooked up to machines. If she couldn’t be watching golf, going to her grandkids events, visiting her family and talking with her friends, she would rather be in Heaven with Jesus.

Our family believes in Jesus and that He died on the cross for us. Accepting His free gift of grace allows us to have the hope of an eternity in Heaven with Jesus. So if you have that hope and promise, why would we selfishly want to keep this woman here suffering and no longer the strong woman we knew? We didn’t. We couldn’t. The family agreed to say good-bye and let her go. To see Jesus face to face. To reunite with her mom and her little son who died at age five. To walk the streets of gold. To worship Jesus with other believers.

But while the decision was easy, the act was not. I’m not going to lie… I was afraid. Terrified even. I had never experienced removing someone from life support. I was not sure what to expect and my biggest fear was that she would struggle to breathe. But in a way, as sad as it was, God brings beauty in the ashes. There were about 19 people in her hospital room surrounding her. Her husband, children, grandchildren, sister, friends, pastor and we all began singing songs of worship. Tears were streaming down everyone’s face as we began the grieving process yet at the same time celebrated the hope of what she would soon experience. Mourning and celebrating. In unison. It was sadly beautiful.

As the day went on, stories were shared, tears were shed, laughter was encouraged. We fellowshipped and reminisced around her bed, thankful for this woman who touched us all. After people began to leave, only her immediate family was left. Trying to decide what to do, the nurse said often the patient will pass away once everyone leaves. We didn’t want to leave her yet it could still be hours or even days. Quietly sitting in her room, just her three children and her husband and me, my husband leaned over and asked if I remembered the name of a song about Heaven we had recently heard. I didn’t remember but suddenly it came to him. He began to play the song called, The Other Side,” and at that exact moment the nurse came to to say she was passing.

It still makes me cry to remember her last moments with just her children and husband surrounding her bedside, crying and saying good-bye as these beautiful lyrics played.

It isn’t easy to say goodbye
But I know it’s only for a little while
Run up ahead and I will catch up
‘Cause I’m gonna see you when tomorrow comes
On the other side
On the other side

I bet you feel you’re finally home
Running down those streets of gold
The kind of peace you can’t explain
Looking into Jesus’ face

I know that you’re in a better place
I know I’ll be joining you someday

Once again, mourning and celebrating. Sadness and beauty intertwined. I’ve never experienced death that closely. Like I said I was afraid. But I am so thankful that God once again showed His compassion and love by taking her peacefully and without struggle. I did not want her to struggle or suffer. And in difficult times, it’s amazing to see God’s hand. He took her HOME peacefully, without any struggle and surrounded by the people she loved the most.

I miss her. I still cry thinking about certain things. I cried when I realized I ordered her the last meal she ever ate. Or that she never finished her book. Or that I can’t text her to update her about my kids. I want to tell her about Zach’s training or send her photos of Katie’s finished library. I want to tell her about Alex’s new entrepreneur center and Mandi getting accepted into grad school. I want to show her pictures of Morgan’s new craft projects and her and Jaiden’s new house. I cry when I see old photos of her with my children. I miss seeing her at church sitting in her regular pew. Or stopping over for lunch because she had to use up her monthly money in the tavern. I miss seeing her interact with my kids, knowing how much she loved them. Or hearing her call my husband “my boy” or “Stevie.”

She was a woman who loved her family deeply. She encouraged, loved, supported and cared in her no nonsense way but I felt it. And I know my children felt it too. We know we were loved by her. Immeasurably. Unconditionally.

I am thankful I know how much she loved us. It gives me comfort. But yet still it hurts to know she’s gone from this earth. That loss will always be present as our family grows and expands. We will feel it at holidays and weddings and graduations. We will feel it in the daily moments when we can’t share exciting news or bad news or ask for advice or wisdom. The loss will hit randomly when we see a red Volkswagen Bug or converse shoes or recess peanut butter eggs. Somedays we will remember something that makes us laugh or smile. That’s the thing about grieving. It’s unpredictable and doesn’t follow a pattern or time table.

But while these moments are heartbreaking for the ones left behind, it’s also time to be joyous. Because she is in a place where there are no tears. No pain. No sin. No evilness. But rather… Peace. Worship. Fellowship. Joy. Holiness. Home.

And we will see her again. So it’s not good-bye! We will catch up… one day… on the other side!

Do you have the hope and peace of eternity? Life is fragile. If you want to know more about Jesus and His gift of salvation and promise of Heaven, feel free to contact me!