The Land of Boys

Learning to live in a house full of testosterone

Archive for the month “January, 2012”

If We Don’t Laugh, We Might Cry

A few days ago, Mark and I were in the car, ALONE, which is very unusual. We used the time to talk about a serious matter. Death. Neither of us are dying, soon, that we know of. We do talk about it every now and then. Death is going to happen to all of us one day. There is no sense in being unprepared when it happens.

Both of us happen to think that sending flowers to the funeral home and decorating graves is somewhat wasteful. We do it for other people, but when we die, we don’t want people to feel like they have to spend their money on flowers. Don’t get me wrong, we have nothing against flowers. We like them. It just seems silly for people to buy us flowers when we are not there to enjoy them. Our bodies may very well be lying there, but we will not be.

1 Corinthians 5:8 Yes, we are of good courage, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord.

“At home with the Lord. ” Can you imagine what that would be like? We would be seeing things that are much more enjoyable than flowers. Think about it: Gates of pearl, streets of gold, walls of jewels. The building materials there are things we think of as precious and valuable here. But really that is not the most valuable thing about about being in Heaven. Can you imagine seeing God in all His glory and splendor? Seeing the hands that took the nails on the cross? The mere thought of that makes flowers pale in comparison.

So anyway, while we were in the car Mark was saying that if he went first he knew I might want to visit his grave occasionally. He said, “Don’t worry about putting flowers on it a few time a year, for special occasions or anything. Just stop on your way home to have a burger and think of me. ”

I couldn’t help it. I burst out laughing at that one. That is how my dear husband thinks he will be best remembered. Slabs of beef, fried or flame broiled, in a bun. Don’t forget the ketchup!

A glad heart makes a cheerful face, but by sorrow of heart the spirit is crushed.~ Proverbs 15:13


Still Looking For a Title

Hmm. I just got an email from WordPress that contained my blog stats of 2011. I only posted nine times in the whole year. Seems like an uneventful year, huh? In reality it was a very eventful year. Not all of it was good, but it did have some bright spots.

The year began with a little carry-over of last year. Mark and I  had decided to get in better shape. To help him out, he got new jogging shoes. There is a walking/jogging trail near our home. We would go there (in the freezing cold) to jog and walk. He over did it one day. So he took a few days off. We went to a museum and he did not have a good time. His knee really hurt. Finally after it was still hurting for two weeks, he went to the doctor.  (Keep in mind during this time his dad was having knee replacement. Mark was taking him to the doctor and hospital. He stayed in the hospital the night before his own doctor’s appointment) The doctor thought it was tears in his cartilage causing him pain. He had to go for an X-ray and another test. Turns out he did cartilage damage, but in the doctor’s own words, “That’s not what is actually causing the pain when he walks. He has a fracture.” Egads!! Did not see that coming. Surgery was needed to repair the damage. A few days after the surgery he passed out as a lingering effect of the anesthesia. Guess who had to catch him? That would be me. It was quite scary. I thought for a moment he died. Two months of missed work. I had to pump gas one day. (first time in my life I had to do that)

So that was mid-to late January, February, and early March. Shortly after he healed, he resigned from youth ministry at our church. Seeing as how we lived in the house owned by the church, a house hunt began. Let’s just say we have seen some really seedy looking neighborhoods.

Late March we were going to head out for a little shopping one night. Before we got on the highway, Mark called his parents to check on them. They had JUST tried to call us. Their house was on fire. Faulty wiring had sparked in the wall. They stayed with Mark’s sister while their house was being rebuilt. During that time, we had “church” services in her living room.

In late April a tornado unlike any I remember in my lifetime hit the southeast. We had to spend much of the day hunkered down. During that time we very fortunate. Many people lost their lives, their homes, or other possessions. The only real loss we had was food from the fridge. No power for about a week. Our town’s water department could not pump the water out to people. Our family can survive without power, but lack of water? We hit the road looking for a hotel. We found one about three hours away. It was the last room they had. The boys weren’t thrilled about being ALL in one room. They kept asking why the hotel didn’t have an indoor pool.  Samuel looked on the sign to the place next to us and said, “They have an indoor pool. Why didn’t we stay there?” Hmph! All the times I told him how important it is to read and now the one thing I would like for him NOT to notice, he does.

Finally in May we found the perfect house. We moved out in the boonies. It is very quiet. We live on a one lane, gravelly type road. When I say this house is perfect, I mean the cabinets in the kitchen are even low. I don’t have to climb to get things. 😀

As we were moving, my mother came to help watch the boys while we moved stuff. She was having problems getting around. Her leg had a swollen place on it. Well, in June she was hospitalized for blood clots. No one could understand what was causing her blood to clot. I had earlier in the year found some good coupons for Osteo BIflex. Turns out if you have a blood clotting disorder, you are not supposed to take that stuff. So, for six months I have felt very guilty that I caused her problems.

October and November: Mark’s mother had to go out of state for doctor’s appointments and a brain surgery. Mark and his aunt are the main ones who had to take her. Going out of state means long car rides and overnight hotel stays. Which can get a little interesting with a brain surgery patient.

Now on to December: Turns out my mother has cancer. THAT is what was causing her blood to clot. She had surgery to remove part of her colon and small intestine. We went to see her after her surgery. Samuel passed out from seeing her with all the needles and tubes coming out of her. I had planned to stay with her a few days at the hospital. After the passing out, I almost went home instead. The boys were really forward to having a “guys’ weekend” complete with eating microwave popcorn and NOT making their beds. So I stayed. Somewhere around midnight, my mother went to sleep. I sat down and started a blog. It is still in my drafts. During her sleep, she had a heart attack. Before I even picked up the nurse call button, they had come busting in. She was actually on the cardiovascular unit of the hospital. That is probably what saved her life. They were there quickly and had her revived in just a very short matter of time.

She had to be moved into the CVICU. My family could not have asked for better nurses. The treatment that my mother has received has been top notch. Even after getting out of the ICU she has had nurses and CNAs that have treated her wonderfully.

Her doctor talked to me a good bit. We really don’t have a strong family history of cancer. He asked about her stress level. He actually told me that stress causes cancer. Wow. That was an eye-opener for me. I always seem to be stressing over something. Usually it is things that don’t really matter.  For example, on the way home from the hospital, Mark apologized for not folding towels and placing the pillows on the bed “the right way” (aka MY way).

So I am starting 2012 with a totally different attitude than I normally would. I don’t have any goals of how I am going to change the world, or even just change my  world.  I am determined to be kinder. Mark was amazed that I was talking to strangers at the hospital. He says I am a snob. I’m really not. I generally don’t talk to people I don’t know because, well not knowing them kind of makes it harder to care about them. I don’t say “Hi how are you?” unless I am actually listening to the answer. But I have spoken to strangers, hugged strangers, and prayed for people that I don’t know and will probably never meet. Since being home, I have made it a point to not get worked up over towels on the floor or toothpaste squeezed from the middle. Those things don’t matter. You want to know what I think does matter? Telling the people you love how much you love them. Being there when someone needs you. That’s what is important.

Post Navigation