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“Nailed!”

I am showing you a picture of the nail that pierced my tire! CRAZY! I went in for a routine check and they found this roofing nail in the front tire.

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The Nissan Dealership was going to charge me an arm and a leg for a tire! $423.00! Now THAT is crazy! So, needless to say… I checked around town for better prices. My husband has a connection at PepBoys so,  he suggested that I go and let him “look” at it. The dealership would only patch the nails in the CENTER of the tire. This was on the edge…..

PepBoys did it for a whopping $43.00. Incredible!

I asked for the nail… because I wanted to see it…and because I wanted to hold it. I wanted to see how big it was… etc. I may bring it to class when we talk about “simple machines”.

I may also keep it to be an object lesson.

My thoughts are … this little nail is …when used properly… a tool for building! It is a “roofing” nail. It is used on houses to build up their roof to keep the house sturdy. BUT! if used improperly…. it will deflate , destroy and cause despair.

It is the same way with WORDS. They are tools to build up… encourage… keep sturdy… etc. If used in the wrong manner… they can tear down…deflate…cause despair.

I am not bringing anything new to the table…. it common sense… It just hit me in a profound way.

The great work a little nail can do… the  profound difference a great word can make~

Thedamage a little nail can do… the  huge damage a little word can do~

I want to be a person that speaks words that build up and add LIFE into situations around me….

( Psalm 19:14… Let my words and meditations of my heart be acceptable in Your sight…O Lord, my strength and Redeemer.)

(Proverbs 16:24 Pleasant words are like honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and  HEALTH to the bones)

Yes… my tire is patched… I am sooo happy… I would have been so TIRED of paying $423.00 for a tire that I would not have had to pay for. (I feel scammed by that dealership… but life goes on… they have their ways)

Nail someone with a word of life!!!  Peg them with an uplifting word and they will think about it over and over…

 

 

2 men, an oil change and a waiting room….God is ah-mazing!

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Ok… so today was a half day at school… so I had an appointment to get the oil changed  at the Nissan Dealership. I checked in and made my way to the waiting room. There was one man reading a book and a silly talk show on TV with a bunch of women gabbing about “who knows what”.  I decided I would munch on my lunch I bought … and settle in. The man reading the book took a phone call and went outside.  Then another man came in and sat down. We made small talk… He spoke about his life and how he is doing after his divorce.  He spoke about all the bickering he and his wife did… I felt sad for him…Then …the man that took the phone call came back in. He joined the conversation… and I found out he is an anesthesiologist! I told him of the brain tumor and I got to spend precious minutes with this man who shared his expertise.  He knew of my doctors at Vanderbilt… he knew all about what I am going to face and I got to ask questions…!!!!!

I loved how he spoke straight with me and I love how he explained everything. He said my face might “go on strike” for awhile… I like how he put it. With a tumor …as big as mine is… I have to realize my face might need some repairing time….it may go “on strike”…AND… He said it “may not”…too.

I could not help but…share… how my faith has help me get through.

I really wanted to remember the encounter …. So  we had our picture taken just before I went to pay.  ( I found out I have a nail stuck in my front tire!)

Anyway….. only God could have put me in a waiting room with an anesthesiologist… open for questions for at least an hour. .

He reassured me that everything was going to be ok… !

Pretty cool… eh?

all…except the nail in the tire! Bummer! Why do  tires have to be so expensive? $423.00…. go figure!

“Teaching with a Tumor”

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Here is room #7…at Westminster Christian Academy. This is my abode, my play ground, my domain….my haven!

I love teaching!  I am thankful for the calling on my life! It is truly a calling…. I remember being asked to declare a major as I passed through registration at LIBERY UNIVERSITY…. I had NO IDEA… I said the first thing that came to mind…. “A teacher”  I mean after all… I remember teaching my stuffed animals…grading their papers and marking it with a dramatic flair! 😉 Yes…they were all lined up with my little chalkboard.

Now, I do not have to pretend! Sometimes I pinch myself. I think… it is scandalous…that I get a pay check!  I have a lot of fun and I am honored to be in students’ lives! I love watching them grow!

Teaching with a tumor has its challenges: My poor quiet ones….the  ones that speak at a whisper…. they  have to repeat themselves a couple of times. It is frustrating… Hall duty had to be banned! …. so did lunch duty for that matter (when everyone is allowed to talk) I just do a  duty outside…  I hear a constant “white noise”….. I really have a hard time processing information…  if there is “extra noise”…like tapping, humming or water bottles crackling. (It stinks to have a child fill out  a disciple note for their  unconscious  humming. Sometimes they do it and not even realize it… of course I give grace….but not for the consistent offender..)  The electric pencil sharpener has been totally BANNED. My sweet friend Kristina, came up with the idea to get little hand held sharpeners. BINGO! They work great! I just keep them by the  trash can and they sharpen their pencil quietly! I have learned… when you have a brain tumor…there are ways to get around the daily stressors! The whine of the sharpener is NO longer a problem.

I am super tired at the end of the day… my brain “FEELS” like it is just gray  matter…. full of static. I just have to plan of going to bed when I “hit that wall” so to speak.  I am so thankful for my sweet husband who files papers every Thursday for me to get the Friday folder ready.

I have a great faculty that is so sweet! 015 In fact… today I went to my box and instead of finding the usual mail… I found this sweet gift …wrapped! I was so touched… I wanted to preserve the moment …. so I took a picture.  I opened it and I read the sweet note and found a standing plaque with encouraging words… “You do not have to worry about tomorrow…. God had already been there..” ~ I think those were the exact words… It is on my shelf at school… I was able to thank that sweet teacher… after school.   As I did ,there were three of us teachers  who stood for at least 20 minutes talking about life and the things that touch our lives… I appreciated their words…their wisdom …their love!  That time was a gift in its self.

I know so many people are praying for me… thank you for those prayers!   Not a moment goes by that I don’t realize my tumor is there…It is stressful It is annoying… It is…what it is… BUT, I KNOW those prayers sustain me…and keep me going!

I have to remember .. MANY OTHER people overcome obstacles TOO!!!  … BIG ones… every day!      I am not the only one suffering. Mine is MINOR compared to what some  people have to go through on a daily basis…It is all in perspective. I mean… one of my surgeon’s  (I have two  amazing surgeons… at Vanderbilt)  hands   has  some kind of genetic defect.  (it is symmetrical on both hands) I did not get to ask him about it… I did not want to embarrass him.. BUT…WOW… The obstacles HE has had to overcome!

If he can operate on the brain… I can teach third grade! 😉    Enjoy every breath you have! Savor the flavor of LIFE!

Tah… Tah..for now…. Feeling grateful.

I am going to LOSE it!

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I was singing in church a couple Sundays ago and the featured song… was…. Well…here are the words…..

“Lift up your eyes….lift up your eyes…. You’re the Giver of life!”

In a split second… I was upset with God… and inquired…. but, “WHY does  my EAR have to die?!” You are the Giver of life?? This seems unfair…WHY?

Then it HIT me…. as the chorus filled the air again and again…. it hit me. In my spirit I heard….I will take your ear…SO that OTHERS CAN HEAR!

GASP! It was settled! My throat filled with frogs and my eyes began to leak…. I just sang … YOU….(LORD) are the Giver of LIFE! ….snd suddenly it was ok.  I would not have this blog and ….you would not be reading it. If He wants to take my hearing so that ONE could LIVE….one could experience what I experience IN Christ everyday… It is worth it!

 

This little acorn seed looks like it is not alive…although…..It has all the nutrients in it so when it is placed in the right conditions it will grow…(( I have heard seeds die before they grow.. I am not sure if that is true…I will have to do some research…))

This summer, when my dad was here…I put an avocado seed on the counter with toothpicks in it and I settled it on water… I watched and waited for the LONGEST time and nothing happened.  It looked like it was dead…Then one day… I see this  little shoot begin to break out. It is as least 12 inches long now. I may take it to school for my 3rd graders to see… I actually want to get another avocado and start over….(maybe it is an excuse for more guacamole dip!)…. (Then we can  measure the daily growth…;0 such a teacher, I know!) Anyway, I say all of that to say…. I find comfort in the seed… I find comfort knowing that the death of my ear will not be in vain… but I pray it will be used to carry the most beautiful message of LIFE  to those around me. Please pray for boldness … please pray as I want to be sensitive to those around me….who need to…HEAR the  life changing  news of eternity.

 

Is there anything that has “died” in your life?  Anything that looks or appears to be dead?  Ask God to show you what NEW life he wants to bring forth from that!

He never….never…wastes a hurt.

I did watch a video of this man who had an AN…and he said the best thing about “LOSING it” is that he was able to get the greatest sleep!

Well… alright  then….something to look forward to. 😉

 

ANY WHERE but HEAR!!!

034Any Where But HEAR!!!

I want to go back to the BEACH! I want to run from tomorrow…. I want to close my eyes and lah…lah…lah…pretend “it” is NOT there… but , it doesn’t matter if I do that because I still hear it’s presence …and feel it’s tasty numbness…..

I just told my husband… I feel…. NUMB. I feel numb tonight because I am trying to be proactive in knowledge…proactive in my faith… and patient in timing. ((Sometimes the information on the computer is way…too much!))

BUT, I still wanna go back to the beach.  I still want to go back to a time when I had      NOO      idea…. I still ….. AUGH! How aggravating to fight with yourself! One minute… it is a GIFT…. the next… a GRIEF! ~    ….. I guess it could be…”oh, good grief!?!”

I have done some research today on the Official Acoustic Neuroma Site … ANA…. I even registered…. I have my own profile and I can email… join conversations… and…. Wahhhh Lahhhh…….. my brain tumor community just got smaller!

Well, since I can’t have my toes in the sand…. I can look forward to the day that I do… the surgery will be behind me…  (I can’t say I am not fearful … reading some of the post are REALLY disturbing)…. for now…. I will continue to TRUST!

One night I went walking… and the song “I Need a Miracle” by I think… 10th Avenue North….came on.   I had to stop…. I had to think….. “I am NOT the only one who needs a miracle here… There are people struggling with stuff that is unseen… personal… struggles…. I am sure there are a lot of people in the same boat I am ~ wishing to BE somewhere else… “it would all be better”… or would it?..

He is our present HELP in time of trouble! …………….. He is HERE!   HE is here for me…. He is here for you.

Anymore time I spend wishing…. will turn into a PITY PARTY…. I don’t want to go down that beach…I “Shore” don’t!  ha ha.. So, I will FIX my eyes on what is unseen…. for that is eternal. Shake off the sand and ride the WAVES of amazing GRACE!

Whew… I am so glad I have this blog….. it talked me out of a ….full fledged temper tantrum… pity, pouty party. Thanks for holding me accountable! See, this is when I feel the answers to your prayers… it keeps me out of Funky Town.

W~

….. a WAR e

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Lately… I have been fully   …. aWARe  of the prayers singing over me!  If you are one of those warriors…. THANK  YOU! I feel them every day!

I am thankful I can greet each day … knowing I am being bathed in prayers. I KNOW my little 3rd grade WARRIORS are always lifting me up!

 

I know that there is a WAR raging over me…. and you for that matter. The devil wants to ZAP our joy…our hope …our courage….he is as a roaring lion. John 10:10.. seeking whom he may DEVOUR!  Well…. I don’t know about you… but I don’t want eaten by a lion. I don’t want my joy to be zapped by a defeated ragamuffin.  I love this little plaque that one of my former 3rd grade students gave me this year….

Our faith must be DEEPLY ROOTED and UNSHAKABLE….. Your ROOTS hold me to your steadfast Foundation  strengthening and overflowing me with thankfulness. I am SOOOO happy this summer I began the book of the   1,000 GIFTS .   Ann Voskamp     What a blessing it was at the time and it really prepared my heart to receive the news of my tumor. It was received in a fertile… thankFULL heart… thankful for a TUMOR?  Well…yes.

 

In a weird way… I am…. I am thankful He chose me for this. I want to squeeze every drop of Jesus out of this experience and enter into something bigger than me. I want to know as much about my Creator as I can on this side of heaven. I know this means WAR! I know I have satan and his thugs stacked up against me… I know I have prayers in the heavenly realms….I have scripture… and I am prepared for battle.  I know that He sings over me…and that I am aWARe…

He sings over you…. are you    aWARe?

Have a great week!

We have only 2 and 1/2 days of school and we will be out for fall break! We are looking forward to seeing some DEAR friends from Georgia!

MEan?

I was told by a sweet friend recently that her mom had suffered a brain tumor….Her tumor was  different from mine. Hers was on the “inside” of the brain as mine is on the outside….It is  pressing, seriously ,on my LAST nerve!  ha ha! Anyway….my sweet friend spoke about how everyone , including her mom, came out of surgery….MEAN! Yes…Mean!She said all the way up and down the hallway she could witness patients on edge as they came out of surgery.  I was taken back by it…. I know the anesthesia really does crazy things to people….but mean? She said her mom threw her food across the room because it was not what she wanted!

At first, this sounded very scary to me…. I probably will not know what is going on. The thought of being mean ….and me not knowing it…kinda scared me!

Then… I thought again….. gee…..this might be kinda fun!   Hummmm……ME??……..MEan?

I m not looking forward to coming out of the drugs. I had out-patient surgery once before…they had to put me under and I really struggled for a couple of weeks. I struggled with a touch of depression. I am not used to a “fog” of any kind and the weeks that followed surgery  really threw me for a loop. I can’t imagine what this adventure is going to be like. I want to be proactive about all of this…. I have my sweet Robyn (adopted mom, mentor and friend) ready to come and read Scripture as I wake up… Chuck, my husband, will be there , too! I guess already having the mind-set that I may not think straight going into this really helps…. If I go loopy…. remind me of this blog!

On the subject of MEAN…my Pastor said something that has always stuck with me…

“Hurting people ….hurt people”

…. I think that is why a lot of people are just plan mean to others….this world is full of a lot of hurt…People trying to get ahead…striving to get the latest toy…oblivious of others…mean because they are jealous…mean because they “feel” like it… mean because they have nothing else to do…. sad…(just take one look at the evening news)

Only the blood of Jesus has the POWer to overcome it!

We are studying a verse this week … my students have to say it to me by Friday….

It is 1 Peter  1 :3-4   Praise be to the  God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. In  his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that for can never perish, spoil or fade- kept in heaven for  you!

What a GLORIOUS verse!
Yes… we can PRAISE our God! He sent His only Son to give us a new birth through His Son’s resurrection! When we know Him we can LIVE in that same power! We have an inheritance that worms …moths… dust will never see!

I don’t know what I will be like coming out of brain surgery… but, I do know Who holds my hand…and maybe we will have a couple good laughs on the other side of this!

Me??…… MEan?….. (insert sinister laugh!)

 

 

MISSing out, but GAINing more….

It is Saturday morning and the wonderful smells that go with Saturday morning are in full swing! ….cinnamon Rolls, scrambled eggs, sausage and coffee… mmm

Yesterday we went on one of the biggest field trips of the third grade year!  We went to the Nashville Zoo!! Yes! We chartered a  bus and headed up north. Charting a bus may not seem like a big deal…but let me tell you it IS!  Imagine a BUS….with a BATHROOM! Now, that is a huge deal to a third grader! Yesterday morning we loaded up 41 giddy students … armed with cameras, sunglasses, water bottles and sunscreen on a bus fit for a rock star!

Now, having an Acoustic Neuroma…really does not mix  well with a bus load of chatty students… plus the HUM of the bus would have  driven  me APE! I would have been climbing the walls. So, I climbed in a van full of 5 other women. They, of course, were the sweet moms who agreed to go and chaperone. ((They are my heroes! They are what make these kinds of trips so successful! We had so many moms and dads who went!  We were so blessed!))  After we were on the way and headed toward the interstate…. I could finally breathe a sigh of relief…we all had lunches…we were all on time…and all was WELL!

WELL, I was feeling sad as I knew what being on that bus  was  like from previous years…! I love to share the experience of it all with my students. As I watched the bus ahead of me….instead of privately pouting… I decided to join where I was and enjoy the ride!  Yes, I missed out on the bus, but I gained sweet conversations with 5 other women! We talked about everything it seemed!  There were sweet stories of LIFE! ~  tender stories of motherhood, adoption, love of family….there was laughing and tears… wahhh Lahhhh …we even had blueberry muffins!

There have been a few things I have had to excuse myself from…just because … it is just too much.  I have had to tell my family “no” to going with them to a movie…sat outside the door for  praise and worship time at  church…sat outside the door for chapel at school…excused myself for “talk” time in the lunch room…. etc..But , I have found it is all in perspective. I could focus on what I don’t have…. or I could live in the moment and focus what I do have!

I have to remember… my attitude is everything! ~ I love the saying….

” A BAD attitude is like a flat tire.. you will not get anywhere unless you change it.”

I really want to live victoriously through this storm… and I can’t.. unless I keep my focus on NOT….  what I will be MISSing …., but,  FOCUS on what I will be GAINing!

 

~H2 OH…DUH!

Well….today I was walking with my sweet students back from their special….they have music on Wednesdays…  and….. I was carrying my cup of coffee.. I had also raided the brownies left over in the office! I thought I was “set” there is nothing like having my comfort cup of morning JOE and a brownie…

One of the sweet teachers…  had reminded me early on in this brain… revelation…to DRINK lots of water and lay off the caffeine !! She knows what she is talking about because she spent MANY days out of Kindergarten due to vertigo.  She happened to walk by and ask the question…Is that water or coffee??  I obviously told her it was coffee…and she gave me one of those….”You NEED” to be drinking water….looks! As I walked to my room… I felt a little chided…and decided she must have known  the answer to her question because IF it was water…it was awful DIRTY!

I KNOW~~~ I KNOW~~~ I need to drink more water…don’t we all?  Anyway …the day goes on and at lunch time ….maybe it was the power of suggestion… my body seemed to become SOO THIRSTY for water! I went to the office and bought a bottled …AS soon as I came back to gather my children from the noisy lunch room… I begin to get this aura …It was the dreaded aura one would get when they are getting  a migraine! I was headed down the migraine track fast and I knew I needed to act quick ….so , I intercepted it with medicine…and MORE WATER!

Well, I am so happy to say that the medicine worked,,, thanks to our AMAZING school nurse !! …. and I was able to return to recess for the last few minutes…and resume teaching as if I did not have any issues.

Isn’t that what it is like when we are in need of SPIRITUAL WATER??   He gives us the LIVING water!!!!    It revives us and adds health to our very bones! We are refreshed and feel encouraged.  Our Creator made our bodies in need of H20… water… He also made our souls in need of His water… When we don’t have it… our bodies can do weird things like get migraines… and when we  don’t have HIS water …the water our souls thirst for… we become weary…. discouraged…and down right grumpy.  In both cases…

If we are weary…think…how is our level of water? It may be a  “H2 OH…duh”   moment!

John 7:38 says… He who believes in me , as the Scripture said, “From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water…”

~ Just a CUP-le Thoughts

Hello Friends!

I woke up this morning with this title running through my brain.. ~Just a CUP-le of Thoughts

– This morning… the “thoughts” were not complete in my mind…but as the day grew full…they began to take shape.

At the end of the  school day… I had the privilege of listening to about 15 students recite the Lord’s Prayer.  As each one came… I was able  to just close my eyes and,,,,, hear it ..just one more time!,,,,,,, I savored it… I  longed for more….

I loved the part where we can pray that He would give us THIS  day…our daily bread….  We are not asking for a weeks worth … or 2 or 3 days worth… We are asking for the 24 hour timeslot  … the timeslot that that is called “today”… It is this PORTION…this CUP that I am thankful for…He will meet all of our needs,,, one day at a time.

I set a “countdown” on my phone to countdown  the  days until  surgery… I am at 91 days… I have 91 days to be able to hear out of both ears… After the surgery…. I will not. I can get overwhelmed at that… I can panic…. I can become all depressed… but,

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I marveled at the “hoot owl”…. that announced its presence outside my window last night. I loved hearing it… It stayed there a good 25 minutes or so…It is in those time I am ever so grateful for the hearing that I  have…. I hate the  the reality that my hearing will be gone on the right side. Questions flood my mind… What will the last words be that I will ever hear in that ear? I would fancy the idea of it being…”I love you !” …from Chuck. More than likely it will be the sounds of nurses….doctors and  a mix of hospital noises…… Reality  sINks in as I think about the next time I will hear in that ear…. it will the be the sound of angels singing….

Now…that is REALity.                  and yes….                  My CUP is still FULL… I am thankful for the comfort of knowing that  I have the very hope and assurance of eternity through my Lord and Savior , Jesus Christ. My reality is not what happens on this earth , but the beauty of what the Lord has planned for His children in heaven.

So, Here are~              ~Just A CUP-le Thoughts!~                 A couple usually means two…

1…..If  you are healthy…. greet  each day with gratitude!  Today is a gift…. In the big scheme of things…… what IS  REAlly important?

2. If you struggle in an area of your life whether it is financial, relationships, health, job, …whatever…know that the Lord is ready and willing to help you. He has unlimited resources…and He is waiting to draw near to you. He is ready to BE your CUPFULL ,,, your portion for today…

P.S.

“Owl” love to hear Mr. Owl again tonight… 😉  Besides having great eyesight… I heard owls are really “nosey”… they like to know whoooo is in your kitchen?  They all like to know the same question….”Hoooo, Hoooo , Hoooo,, Hoooo cooks for youuuu?  Have you heard it, too?