Whispers In Your Ear…….When God and Satan Collide

Has it ever happened to you?  That voice in your head that reminds you of your past mistakes or the what-could-have-been or tells you that you aren’t pretty enough, good enough or worthy enough?  That voice that is a reminder of all the things you wish were different?  That voice that always pops up when you are the most exhausted, worried or stressed?  That voice that breaks your heart into a million pieces….that my friends is the voice of Satan whispering in your ear.

He whispered in mine last night.  He showed me what life would be like if Hannah was well and was “typically developed.”  As I watched her fall asleep tears fell down my face.  Don’t get me wrong I LOVE that little girl with my whole being but sometimes, in my weakest and most fragile moments, the evil one whispers in my ear and makes things worse.  He told me that if Hannah was healthy she wouldn’t have gone through or continue to go through surgeries, procedures, many doctor appointments and using a plethora of medications.  He told me that she would be in school and be able to go to church.  He told me that at the age of 12 I wouldn’t be bathing her, brushing her teeth, wiping her hiney when she went potty (heck, I wouldn’t be sitting in the bathroom with her for hours each day).  He told me she would be falling asleep without me standing there, would want to leave the house, take family vacations, get pedicures, go shopping and do things for herself.  I had an image of a “typically developed” whole and healthy 12-year-old and my heart broke in a bazillion pieces and I cried out to God.

BUT……then I came back to my reality and I looked at Hannah now asleep.  Her innocence, her dependence on me, her sweetness, her beauty, her ability to accept her life, her resilience and my heart broke all over again.  You see, after I allowed Satan to whisper in my ear God in His still small voice whispered “look at what you have, look at what I created, look at the gift you have been given, look at HER.  Yes, she isn’t whole and healthy nor is she “normal” by the world’s standards but she is courageous, she is strong, she is loving, she is precious and she is fearfully and wonderfully created by ME and I allowed you the honor and privilege of being her mom.”  Again, my heart broke……

Satan and God collided in my mind and heart last night and GOD WON!

I will be honest……I am weary and broken.  There are days I don’t know how to pray and I seem to repeat the same prayers over and over and over again; hoping that this time God will answer them the way I want them answered.  I know it doesn’t work that way but I keep praying……I keep pleading…..I keep begging for my little girl to be well.  Perhaps I won’t see that this side of Heaven but I keep pleading on her behalf, as does she.  She prays before each meal and before bed “help fevers go away, make Hannah better, Hannah back to school, Hannah back to church.”  She knows…..she still prays……she still has faith that He will heal her; so who am I to think anything differently.  Her strength and faith gives me strength and faith.  The faith of a child…….oh, how it puts me to shame.

Please continue praying for Hannah.  If you don’t mind, say a prayer for me and Dennis too.  I can’t speak for Dennis, but my heart, soul, mind and body are weary and worn.  I am so mentally and emotionally exhausted; but I know that God will give me the peace and perseverance I need to press on……thank you for standing in the gap for us…….

God wins…….always……. even in the battle for your thoughts.  Satan knows when you are weak and he manipulates that and he will do everything in his power to make you feel worse…..oh, but my friends, God is more powerful, all knowing and ALWAYS there; in our weakest He is made strong.  Cry out to Him and He alone will whisper in your ear in His still small voice that rids your thoughts of the evil one’s manipulations.

You are stronger than you know……..press on, don’t give up……TRUST HIM!

My world in one picture

Until next time……….

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Worth Celebrating

I love celebrations, parties, get-togethers and just having happy and joyful reasons to celebrate and today is one of those days.  You see…..many, many years ago a little boy was born and that little boy grew up to be a fabulous man.  That man is my best friend, my husband, my baby’s daddy!  Today we celebrate Dennis!  He is one of my favorite people to celebrate because let’s be honest, he is a pretty great guy but he is more than that to me.  He is my confidant, my most loyal friend, my provider (financially) and let’s face it that is pretty important, especially the way I love to shop (HA).  He is the one I can take my frustrations out on and he still loves me.  He is the one who I can cry on his shoulder and when that shoulder is soaking wet, he will give me his other one.  He is my protector and defender and the one I trust most with my life and well-being.  I know he would lay his life down for me and for Hannah and that is a really big deal if you ask me.  He is a fabulous father and loves our Hannah more than life.  He has had to do so much more than most dad’s have to.  Even though Hannah is 12 years old, there is still a lot of things she can’t do for herself and Dennis is always willing to help her and me.  He doesn’t ever back down or try to pawn responsibilities off on me, because he knows he is capable and I am so thankful he is willing to do his fair share.  He gives me nights out even when he has worked all day and will come home, tag out with me and do all the nightly duties with Hannah.  Frankly, he does everything for bedtime with her if he is home.  From medications, potty time, brushing teeth, reading a book, prayers and bedtime.  She wants him to do those things and he willingly does it.  I have also seen him play Barbie’s more than once!  HA!

He works hard, always has, even prior to us having Hannah.  He wanted a big family (yes, he wanted more than one child, but I knew I could only handle one).  He would have handled more so much better than me.  But, he sacrificed that big family because I just couldn’t do it again.  He is my strength when I am weak.  I had a  little emotional breakdown the other day on the phone with him and he was calm, cool and collected and was able to “talk me down.”  He is financially smart and I am so thankful for that.  I am so thankful that he decided at the start of our marriage that we would live on his income and save mine.  That wisdom has enabled me to stay home with our sweet Hannah since she was born.  He sacrifices so much and really gets so little in return.  There are days he gets home from work and eats cereal (like twice this week) because I either have not had time to cook or had a bad day with Hannah.  There have been nights he has come home and scrambled him an egg because there was nothing prepared and yet, he never complains.  On the flip side there have been days when I have made spaghetti (his least favorite thing) and he has eaten it without complaining (even though I know he wants to spit it out).  He never makes me feel like I am not enough and always acknowledges my hard work and effort in taking care of our home and Hannah.

I could go on and on and on but let’s suffice it to say that I would be lost without him and he deserves to be celebrated today and every day.

Happy Birthday Dennis!  We love you so much…..forever and always!

Dennis wearing his favorite t-shirt!

 

Proving to the world he doesn’t “hate” cats!  Handing Cecil to my dad!

 

Here is more proof he doesn’t hate them….Simon (my parents cat).  Simon LOVES Dennis!  HA!

 

One of my favorite pictures! Pure love!

 

My love!

 

An oldie but goodie!

 

 

 

Until next time……..

 

LONG Overdue Update

Hey there blogging world…..I haven’t disappeared, although it might seem as if I have.  I haven’t had the chance to blog like I used to as time gets away from me and I haven’t been good at setting aside time to just sit down and do what I love to do; which is write.

I set the time aside this morning to give you a quick update on Hannah.  I have had so many people ask about her and I do keep Facebook pretty up-to-date but so many of those who have asked don’t have Facebook so this update is for each of you.  Plus, this update is way more detailed than I take time to do on Facebook.

It has been a whirlwind the past few months.  Let me start by saying that Vasayo has been a life-changer for Hannah since May.  As you might recall we started using the Sleep product that Vasayo offers and it has completely taken Hannah’s insomnia away.  She is falling asleep fast and sleeping all night long; which is a miracle for us as the past 4 years she has dealt with horrific insomnia and I am so very thankful for Vasayo Sleep!  So, for those wondering if the Sleep product is still working….YES, it is working beautifully for her.  I will NEVER run out of Sleep by Vasayo at my house!  HA!

We have, however been dealing with some new type health issues and we are still trying to figure out if the issues are Endocrine, Neurological and/or Cardiovascular in nature. The testing we have done so far has been inconclusive, so there are more procedures and testing heading into the next few weeks (it always seems to happen during the holidays for Hannah).  Anyway, our Cardiologist is working on possibly placing a loop monitor in Hannah’s chest to look for rhythm issues.  He sent us home with a 30-day heart monitor but after the 2nd day Hannah learned how to disconnect it and would not leave it on.  So, that obviously didn’t work for her.  The only other option is to place a monitor in her chest which would be done surgically.  I hate that for her but we need to know if she is having any arrhythmia’s.   If she is, it will be very important that we fix it.  Our Endocrinologist has ordered what they call a ACTH stimulation test.  This is a test for her adrenals.  Your adrenals are very important in your body dealing appropriately with stress and Hannah’s life is full of stress/sickness, etc.  She had “adrenal fatigue” a few years ago due to all the steroids she was on so he thought it important to test her adrenals again since she is having these new significant health concerns.  I love that his thought process is “better safe than sorry” and willing to do what needs to be done to check things out.

We had some testing done yesterday in Gainesville and then met with her Neurologist.  After seeing her test results and physically seeing Hannah he decided it would be in her best interest to have further Neurological testing done (PRAISE THE LORD).  Y’all, this is a huge answer to prayer.  So, most likely the 2nd or 3rd week of November Hannah will be admitted into UF Shands Gainesville to have tests done on her brain.  Another praise is we have been trying to get into see a Rheumatologist at UF Shands and after speaking with our Neurologist yesterday he agreed to talk to the Rheumatologist there (she isn’t taking more patients at this time), but he agreed with Hannah’s daily fevers, her already several autoimmune diseases and low immune system that it would be a very good idea to get in to see Dr. Elder.  So, I am praying specifically that he can make that happen for us.

Our sweet former nurse from Carithers, Katharine (who now works for Shands) came to visit us in the hotel and brought Hannah a new Belle Doll. Hannah was so happy and this mama was too!

 

Sitting waiting to have an EEG…..that is a forced smile….she was so full of anxiety.

 

During the EEG, once she realized there was no ouchies or boo-boos involved.

So, as you can see, we have been really busy and I would be lying if I told you I wasn’t feeling the stress and pressure right now of dealing with a medically complex and fragile child.  I laid in bed last night (like I do every night) and I cried out to God.  Twelve years of being a caregiver is weighing heavy on me.  I LOVE my little girl with ALL I have and I will do this for the rest of my life BUT…..I feel it.  I have learned not to worry and fret as much because I do know that nothing will happen that God doesn’t already know about and that He is always with us and going before us and in all reality there is absolutely NOTHING I can do to change anything; but the stress I feel on a daily basis is real.  I have never dealt with anxiety in my life like I do now.  I am so uptight and riddled with anxiety when it comes to protecting Hannah (especially from germs).  Her getting sick is detrimental and the stress I put on myself to keep her well and doing everything in my power to keep her well takes its toll on me.  I know that might sound stupid, but no one understands unless you are the primary caregiver of someone who is sick.  When Hannah is sick, it is me that is taking care of her.  When she is sick, she flares horrible (thanks to PANDAS), which is horrific and a “typical” duration of sickness for Hannah is about 3-4 times longer than most.  The worst thing I do is take her to doctor visit after doctor visit; because let’s face it….where do sick people go?  To the doctor of course!  Traveling with Hannah is no fun either.  She is not a fan of getting in the car and her anxiety spikes and until you are in the car heading home….that is when she relaxes and does better.  Going to Gainesville the other day she was riddled with anxiety.  The hotel stay, the testing, the visit with our Neurologist…..she really struggled.  Thankfully my mom took off work and went with me as it really is a 2-person job handling Hannah out-of-town.  My mom commented as we were heading home…..”she is so happy now.”  Yep….she knew the doctor visit, hotel stay, hospital testing was over.  She was a different child as we drove home knowing that the bad stuff was behind her.  It is truly heartbreaking that she gets so stressed out and has such high anxiety as a child.  Her anxiety causes some behavioral issues but very significant tics and extreme OCD to the point she is very difficult to handle alone; then the tears…..oh the tears!  So, again very thankful my mom was able to travel with me since Dennis couldn’t.

I guess that is the latest update on Hannah.  Your prayers, as always are so very much appreciated.  So  many of you have walked this journey and prayed for us on this journey since before Hannah was born.  Thank you for sticking with us and carrying us through with your prayers.  I have somewhat accepted the fact that this roller coaster ride of health issues could be our life but it won’t keep me from trying and researching and begging doctors to help us help Hannah.  God bless each of you.

The sweetest picture…..photo credit to our amazing babysitter Lyndsay!

Until next time……..