Naps, baseball, forts, and future aspirations

I took a nap today. A long nap. A Gilligan’s Island nap. You got it: I slept for 3 hours. My body must be doing some serious healing if it lets me sleep that long in the middle of the day. The thing about sleeping that hard is I have some wacky dreams. And if I could remember any of them I would tell you what they were. But alas, at the moment I’ve got nothin’.

When I awoke from my power nap, I realized the Tigers game was already in progress, and turned it on so I could watch while I made lunch and folded laundry. Mike does most of the washing and drying because the machines are down in the basement, and I do the folding and putting away. But since he was so busy taking care of me and my normal duties after I had surgery, he had gotten a little behind. And yesterday, he got caught up. (Are you bored yet? Just wait, it gets better) So today I had SIX very full baskets of laundry to fold. And while I folded, the Tigers went 13 innings and lost the game with a pitcher’s balk. (Okay, I lied, it didn’t get any better.)

Dinner was a treat. Mike grilled steaks and baked potatoes. My daughter, the semi-picky eater, loves steak, so it’s nice to see her enjoy her food. Luke likes steak too, but he would often prefer meatloaf. I thoroughly enjoyed my steak and potato, joined by a warm bottle of Budweiser Black Crown. And after we ate, we played.

Luke was given a Crazy Forts set for his birthday, which is kind of like a giant Tinker Toy set. Since Luke is grounded from video games, he has been building forts. Natalie helps too, and it’s so refreshing to see them playing and building something together. And after they build it, they crawl in and out of it, and they have a blast! When they’re done, they take it all apart and put it back in the box. Best toy ever.
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After the fort-building Natalie pulled some books off the shelf and pretended to read. The books were John Grisham’s The Client, and a collection of Sherlock Holmes’ mysteries. In the past she has said she wants to be a doctor, so I reminded her of that and said it was good that she learns to read long books early, to prepare her for medical school. She says she wants to be a surgeon, one that works on knees (Grandma Deb just had a total knee replacement and we’ve been praying for her. Natalie is fascinated, as usual.)

I asked Luke if he knew what he wanted to be when he grows up. His answer? A WWE Wrestler.

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Bullies

Today we got a call from my son’s teacher. He was in trouble for fighting. We teach our kid the rules about fighting, and he is well aware of what you are not to do. But today he was in trouble for *choking* a boy. A boy from his first-grade class, who is probably as big as your typical third grader, and is also known for being a bully. My son takes after me, and is on the smaller side, only he doesn’t seem to know it. I love that he doesn’t seem to know he is smaller, because it means he doesn’t let it hold him back. So when a big 3rd-grade sized bully starts giving him trouble, the fight wells up inside him and today he just couldn’t hold it in. Of course, he’s grounded from video games and Youtube until Friday. Because though it’s good to be able to stand up for yourself, in these cases the answer is not retaliation.

Nothing, really

Kind of a day to remember in the cochlear implant journey. Today I had my stitches taken out. Woo. Hoo. And now I can *gently* take a shower. I still have the bending and lifting restrictions for two more weeks, but I’m finding ways to work around them. Mike reattached the arm to my glasses, so I’m good there. Just need my hair to grow back behind my ear and I should be all back to “normal”.

The next step in this journey is to turn the thing on. Which will happen in 31 days. Four and a half weeks. Once we are introduced, I plan to purchase a skin or two to decorate it. Paisley, Wonder Woman, Detroit Tigers, etc.

Oh, and then? Then the mapping (programming) begins, and I take regular trips to the audiologist to get the thing trained to work with my brain. From what I hear (lol), it can take a good six months to be comfortable with it and feel like I’m hearing somewhat normally.

The doctor sent me home today with an appointment card for November. So come next winter, we’ll be talking about a second surgery to get an implant behind the left ear. Which seems impossible to think of right now, but oh well. We just keep moving forward, don’t we?

I don’t have much else on my mind lately, but I expect that’s just a result of the recent craziness of surgery and throwing birthday parties. I’ve been reading a really old book called Waiting On God, and it’s been interesting. Talks about *how* to wait, and the purpose and importance of it. I like it. I’m also reading Jesus At Walmart – The Cost, which is the second book in a trilogy. It has some dialog that is comically unrealistic, but I like the story and the spiritual content, and that’s why I decided to continue reading after I finished the first book.

Other than all that, I’m enjoying watching baseball. It’s the only thing on television I am able to enjoy without hearing. I can see what’s happening, who is playing, what the score is, etc. It’s very nice. And it doesn’t hurt that my Tigers are rockin’ it so far this season!

Enjoy the people

ImageToday was Luke’s birthday party. In the past, I have experienced much anxiety over gatherings that involved more than, say, the four of us. But this year I am changing. This year I am learning to relax and enjoy the moment. Enjoy the people. And today I had a great opportunity to put that new lesson into practice. Luke was joined by wonderful friends and they played games (thanks Sarah!) and opened presents (Luke’s favorite), and even ate some ice cream and cake (thanks Daddy). The celebration didn’t look at all like what I had expected a few weeks ago, but I let go of those expectations and it all worked out. Everyone seemed to have a wonderful time, and no one left crying. I think I might even have the courage to do it again when the next birthday rolls around!

A good wine takes time

Image 2 Corinthians 4:7-9 says “We have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves. We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed. Perplexed, but not despairing. Persecuted, but not forsaken. Struck down, but not destroyed.”

Verse 16 goes on to say, “Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison.”

It’s true, I feel pretty crummy on the outside. I feel like a decaying clay jar. Cracked and dirty, beyond repair. We all have our ailments. Just today I found out a friend of mine is mostly deaf in one ear. I have many friends with MS.  I have another dear friend who is dying of ALS. But let’s be real. We’re all getting older, we are all headed for the grave sooner or later. And yet, this is just temporary. Life on this physical earth is so short compared to the eternity in heaven promised to those who believe. And if that gift wasn’t good enough, God assures us that while our physical bodies decay here on earth, our spirits – our inner bodies – are being continually renewed and storing up glory for future redemption. As my spirit is being renewed, I am storing up treasures in heaven. It’s an investment with a guaranteed return.

I think most of all, these verses remind me that while I feel stuck in a crummy, helpless situation, God can still use me for good. And certainly, if any good comes from me, I can take no credit. I’m just a clay pot, remember? If the wine tastes good, you know who made it.

 

 

 

Double the Blessings

The Lord says, “Today I declare that I will restore to you double.”

– Zechariah 9:12 (NRSV)

This was the verse in today’s devotional from The Upper Room. As we often experience loss in life, God’s desire is for restoration. He wants to give us more than we have lost. My husband and I struggled with infertility for seven years. But now we have an amazing son (turned 7 today) AND a daughter. They are both amazing, and miraculous. A double blessing, when we thought for years we couldn’t have any.

I lost my hearing last August, and some vision a month later in September. I just received my first cochlear implant last week, and in June it will be activated. In June, I will be hearing again! Becoming deaf was a huge loss, but the lessons I have learned through it and the life it has brought me to are huge blessings. Blessings I wouldn’t trade for anything.

My vision has improved slightly, but not enough to allow me to drive again. This has been quite a loss, one I’m not too proud to admit I am angered over. (Just now, as I read this, it occurs to me that perhaps God is angry over it too. Angry that He had to let it happen. Food for thought, but I know there is a divine purpose in here somewhere.) God knows how I feel. Yet God knows that even in my anger, I still praise Him and serve Him with all that I am. And I am holding to the promise He gave, that He is fighting for me, and that I will be healed.

Life comes with all sorts of heartaches and disappointments, but it also comes with great blessings and JOY. I have come to learn the beauty and joy in focusing on the positive, on the gifts we are given each day. Carpe Diem!!

I may be deaf and half-blind, but I am and will always be… still Mindy