Looking Back. Looking Forward…

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Please look carefully at my ID bracelet from Monday. I am not 70-something. Thank you very much for the insult, ma’am. And, from my first check in when my HSA card wouldn’t work and I was giving this ID band I should have known it wasn’t going to be my best day. I went from grumpy to grumpier as the day went on. Drawing blood continues to be a lot of poking and prodding. Clearly, my veins are grumpy and tired too. They now always give me the same precious lady, Betty, to draw my blood. After some fails by the others in previous weeks, they’ve decided I get Betty – every time. And she’s great. She rarely requires multiple pokes but recently when she had the needle in and had to start moving it around under skin to get the blood. I looked up and Scott was pale and asked to go sit down. Nice. And he’s not even the one being poked! This past Monday it didn’t take multiple pokes but it took some work to get the blood to cooperate. So from there we went to see doctor and take meds (on appointment days I have to take meds onsite) and do the EKGS.

I seriously love my research nurse, Nancy, and she is amazing at her job. However, when you are quite proud of yourself for only missing your meds ONCE since 12.29 and turn in your meds diary every week with pride of completion, would you find yourself shocked and then grumpy to hear her comment on your medicine-taking and realize you may be getting a D/F in the class instead of an A?! Yeah, I was bummed too. Nancy got her serious face on and told me she doesn’t care if I exercise (Dr. Osborne’s mantra and constant encouragement) or lose weight (would sure like to lose weight and that would cease the nagging about not gaining weight bc of crazy negative impact on
mortality associated with weight gain) but ‘just please please please eat breakfast and take your meds!’ Insert: Shock face! Then Scott jumped on the lecture bandwagon. I was none too happy with him either. Then I shared with Scott (in front of all – awkward!) that it felt more like judgement than love and B/Jamie chimes in and says ‘that’s not what I heard…’ so I was annoyed with her too! Within an hour, I was able to smile again with B but I did give her a dirty look after she agreed with Scott to which she (or maybe Nancy?) replied ‘should we leave yall two alone?’ Fun times. Cancer plus lectures in tiny exam rooms equals less-than-fun Monday. During the lecture, Angela uncharacteristically kept her mouth shut but began to start naming every easy breakfast item she could think of! It SOUNDS so easy to ‘every day wake up and eat a light breakfast and wait an hour and take your meds.’ Yeah right. I like to sleep. And while I love food I don’t love food first thing in morning. So I can’t figure out how to wake up early enough to care about food, prepare food, eat food and then have an extra hour to kill before I start the day. And the meds themselves? Apart from my regular half dozen vitamins and other meds to help manage effects of no hormones and the clinical trial drugs, I also have 6 new meds – 2 of which require refrigeration and none of which can be conveniently put in pill box because Nancy has to count my pills every time I go in. For reals. So there is my essay on ‘Why It’s So Hard to Stay Alive.’ Needless to say, I was grumpy. And THEN during all these shenanigans, Nancy is trying to do an EKG and after 2 tests gets results saying ‘enlarged left something or other…’ So as if I don’t have enough appointments I had to go back up at 4:15 for an echocardiogram. Did I mention I was grumpy? And when they called to schedule the echo the girl on the phone was SO NOT HELPFUL. And had a zillion insurance questions even though I’ve been there before. Sometimes this little brat in me what’s to scream ‘I have cancer can’t you just be nice and make this easier!’ Instead I channeled my inner Lincoln and said ‘you aren’t being very nice to me.’ Yeah, I’m gonna be 43 this week and I pulled out that big girl line. But an echocardiogram AND insurance hoopla?! Ain’t nobody got time for that! My heart was fine. I knew it would be. At least physically. It took a few days for the grumps to go away and my real heart to be better! Thankfully it’s on the mend and as the week went on I went from grumpy and tired to only tired (sans the grump) and, by the Lords grace and Providence I am actually REFRESHED as I write this.

Scott proposed we go to Linger Conference at Watermark (and later tried to claim it as his Valentines gift even though it was his idea for himself and I made the reservations … Does that sound like a good Valentines gift?!) and while I am usually 👎 for conferences … this. has. been. amazing. Well done, Shane and Shane! Our pastor/friend, JP, described this as a ‘commercial for heaven.’ I think my cheeks cramped from the smile of that thought at that moment.

One of the speakers yesterday was Tullian Tchividjian – stinkin LOVE him! And then, today, Randy Alcorn is speaking and before I got re-diagnosed (not sure how to tag the events of 12.6.15 but it’s not a recurrence – just the bad news that it had spread. Anyways, before 12.6, I had read a fiction book called ‘Deadline’ that had a great representation of heaven. So, with my new news, I realized the Lord had used that book to prepare my heart and give me a sweet and joyful longing for heaven. What a gift! And that same author was one of the speakers too.

And, as if all of that wasn’t enough, then Phil Wickham sang the most amazing song about heaven. And within an hour of that song, Shane and Shane were playing the song that had already blessed Scott and I so much (wrote about in a previous post).

One more thing…
So most of you know that Lincoln is a total GIFT! He was given when we were newlyweds and weren’t sure we wanted kiddos and were on birth control (prior to a heart change in the topic!). And, then, 8 months after he was born we learned I had breast cancer. We still often reflect on how kind our God is and how perfect His timing is. And God continues to delight us with this little man. He’s got lots of personality and very opinionated (he’s in a ‘don’t take my picture!’ phase) and doesn’t like Jesus’ hair. And, apparently, he has a secret free spirit. His parents can’t dance. And we’ve never really seen Linc dance much. However, apparently he likes to dance in public places as long as his parents aren’t around. One of our neighbors’ sisters caught this one-man-dance-show. And we have watched it over and over. This is what it looks like to be completely free of fear of man (Lord, please help me follow my son’s example!) and have 2 white parents…

http://youtu.be/r2oInLl98O8

We love and thank you all.

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8 thoughts on “Looking Back. Looking Forward…

  1. I think you are entitled to your grumpiness! If someone had given me that bracelet I would have been more than insulted and less than polite (with a hint of sarcasm, I’m certain!) You amaze me – and I have watched Lincoln dance on that video and cracked up several times! I think when he’s with us next week, he and I might work on a routine…loving you! Text me and let me know what day and time to pick him up. We are excited to spend the time with him and delighted that you have a special birthday trip courtesy of great friends!

  2. I can’t imagine how anyone can not be grumpy! You rarely are which is amazing, you are amazing. The DOB on bracelet, my sisters will tell you that would be big problem for me 😉 – seriously – a mistake in a hospital – no. On a lighter note on year of birth – recently Michael was booking a flight for me and Mollie ask, year of birth? I said 1950 – Michael said “the dropdown doesn’t go back that far”. HA! Hope that makes you smile for a second. I love you

  3. Grumpy is fine, an entitlement once in a while. But….that insult about “70 something”—-I don’t know. Getting a little personal for some of us.
    Thanks for keeping us up to date. Think about you often and miss your instructive harassments of years ago.

    MOD

  4. Well……I’m close to that age so I wouldn’t be insulted ……..years ago I checked into a hospital and was given the bracelet for a MAN who registered at the same time……they realized I wasn’t there for a vasectomy…….

  5. Dearest Jennifer,
    I, too, am one with tiny veins, that often require multiple, multiple pokes, with the prodding of needles. It’s awful, no matter how you slice (poke?) it. My heart is with you, sister!
    blessing upon blessing
    love,
    susan lewis

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