Friday, November 28, 2008

We Could Do Something Big

I just love the way Chandler and Joey think ~ they get all fired up about doing something big like climbing Mount Everest ~ then reality settles in and it's downgraded to renting the DIE HARD DVD! Well ~ me, when I say I am about to do something monumental, I am all about the follow through. Brain surgery, let's do this thing, now! Less than five days and I will be on my way to being on the other side of a PFD. Not to be confused with a personal flotation device ~ lol!

Monday, November 24, 2008


I know this is totally random ~ but these pics just made me laugh and I wanted to share with you!

Friday, November 21, 2008


A very wise chiari friend of mine told me that when she was getting ready to have her brain decompressed she planned her dream vacation. That way, when she was feeling miserable she would have something to look forward to. She suggested that I do the same. The task at hand is harder than it might sound. All of the 'road blocks' immediately come to mind trying to squash my dream like an unwelcome bug before it's come to life! Where will I come up with the money for a trip? How will I take the time off? Will I ever be healed enough to do what I want to do?

One of my dreams is to summit Mt Kilimanjaro. I was intrigued when I read Seven Summits a couple of years ago. I am fascinated that you start out in the rain forest and end up in Arctic like conditions on the summit. The book I am reading, Learning to Breathe, Alison Wright, the author's dream when she is recovering is to summit Mt Kilimanjaro on her 40's birthday. Just the other day I saw the story about Ann Curry climbing Kilimanjaro, too ~ coincidence? So ~ yeah ~ Kilimanjaro's on the list. I guess the biggest question is who can I wrangle to go with me on the journey? Any volunteers?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Guest Blogger is Back

Hi! For those of you not familiar, I'm Lacie's friend Erica from several jobs ago, almost several lifetimes ago. We went on a crazy road trip in the middle of Pennsylvania to see the X-Files movie together. I'm a big fan of Korean Drama and a still bigger fan of my three kids. Lacie, who can be as obsessed and as kooky as I, is a dear friend.

But if you are a friend of Lace's you understand that she is one of those people who makes connections and is fierce about keeping those friendships and maintaining them.

I've written about Little Lacie of the Enormous Brain a few times on my blog. Lacie is probably my most avid comment-writer, and being the comment and hit whore I am, it is always appreciated.

Many have been privileged to read and be part of this tiny little woman's incredible journey. Out of her generosity, and let's face it, her need to make sense of this whole process, she let us in. I've known her for, I don't know, going on 10 or 11 years now, and the way she has carried herself throughout has been an inspiration to me as I know she has been an inspiration to countless numbers.

If you are a regular to Lacie's blog, you will know that she is going in for her surgery the beginning of December.

Today's request/plea though is this: I want us to buy Lacie some wigs. She has resoundingly approved of this idea and fully intends to wear whatever we buy her. Maybe I can get her to take pictures after so we can see how well they suit her.

We can get some lovely things here at a very reasonable price, or you can be more conservative here, but slightly more expensive. While I may look for something in a Scully fashion, I might decide to pander to Lacie's geekier side and get The Matrix Twins Wig. :)

Here's what I would like you to do: if you want in, if you want to in some small way, help support this beautiful woman who has inspired and moved us, email me at I will coordinate the types of wigs so there is no duplication, tell you where to ship them to make sure they get to Lacie so she can smile and feel your love. If you can't afford a wig, which is cool, email me and I'll collect cards, letters, emails, and love for her and deliver them in a happy package to her door.

Cards and words of encouragement for her husband John would be a great idea too. I know what it's like to have a spouse in the hospital. I know what its like to carry the load at home, caring for the kids, working, rushing to the hospital, and worrying all the time.

Let's show Lacie and her family how much she has touched our lives, while she Lives Loves and Laughs.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

United As One Team ~ Reaching For Our Dream!

What whirlwind of a weekend! Friday night we took the girls out of school around noon and headed down to New Jersey for the Eastern Regional Cheerleading competition. We were all decked out in our silver, blue and white ~ cow bells and banners in tow. Hannah's Jr Pee Wee Large team did awesome ~ we are so very proud of her and her team for going out there and giving it their all! Out of 15 teams, we placed 4th ~ we missed our Disney invitation by two places. There were lots of tears shed ~ the girls really had their hearts set on Disney, but I know that we will get there next year!

On the way home we stopped in a quaint little New Jersey town and had a late lunch with a friend from high school. It's been so fun reconnecting with long lost friends ~ you know, life is just too short not to! When we headed back home we drove right through a band of heavy rain and tornado warnings. My head was feeling like it was going to explode by then and I just couldn't wait to get home and get in bed! Today we are staying around the house to relax. Did I mention that there is snow in the forecast for the next couple of days? Seriously, just yesterday it was a balmy 73 degrees!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The Bison ~ Are Back ~ And Ready To Compete

It's that time of year ~ again. Hannah's cheer squad is competing in the Eastern Regional competition on Saturday morning. The team has improved 500% from last year and have really kicked it up a notch in their routine. I am so very proud of Hannah! She has worked really hard to perfect her cheers and routine and it really shows! Her team will be competing against 14 other squads ~ reaching for a team invitation to the national competition at Walt Disney World in a couple of weeks. They will only take two teams to move on to the final competition.

Did I mention that WHEN they go to Disney and compete ~ December 8th ~ there's a huge chance that I will still be in the hospital recovering! What are the odds? Well last time I was connected to a morphine pump the GIANTS won the Super Bowl! Wish us luck ~ it's going to be a big day ~ I can feel it! GO BISON!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Ducks In A Row????

The last 24 hours have been an emotional roller coaster. I sent off my short term disability info to be filled out for my upcoming surgery and found out that the RN who is taking care of my case at TCI is out of the office. Ok ~ I can roll with that ~ sent my info along to the person who is covering for her. I received an heart attack worthy e-mail yesterday that basically said that they couldn't fill out my paperwork, because I had not seen a doc at TCI in over 6 months. GULP!!!!

Needless to say I had a moment or two of panic last night. Holy HEAT ~ does this mean they might cancel my surgery??? They specifically told me that I didn't need another appt before my surgery ~ OI!!! So I fired off an e-mail with all kinds of questions for said representative asking what can I do to remedy this problem. This morning I received a call from TCI. I recognized the area code on the caller ID at once. Before answering the phone I took a deep breath and just turned over the whole situation to God. Seriously ~ what else could I do?

So it turns out, the woman I spoke to didn't even know that I was scheduled for surgery in 21 days ~ she couldn't even locate my file!!!! So I filled her in on the details and what was going on with my case. ~ sigh ~ I even offered to find the paperwork that was filled out earlier in the year for my detethering so that she can duplicate the info on the current forms. I feel so for everyone who works at TCI. They seemed so over worked and under appreciated. I know their patient load is hard to keep up with. So, for now, the train seems to have avoided a derailment. I just hope they locate my file before I get there so that there isn't any confusion.

Earlier today I was listening to a song I first heard when I was in college ~ Higher Ways by Steven Curtis Chapman. Again, the lyrics really touched me, softened my heart and changed my attitude that had become bitter last night.

Take a listen for yourself and see if it has the same effect on you ~

If I could only fly
I'd go up and look down from the sky
So I could see the bigger picture
And Lord if I could sit with You
At Your feet for an hour or two
I'm sure I'd ask too many questions
'Cause there's so much going on down here
That I must confess I just don't understand
But I have prayed
And at your feet my whole life has been laid
So I wont worry I wont be afraid
'Cause my soul is resting on Your higher ways
Let the road ahead become unclear
I am Yours so what have I to fear
If my soul is resting on Your higher ways
Your higher ways teach me to trust You
Your higher ways are not like mine
Your higher ways are the ways of the Father
Hiding His children in His love
So let it rain
And if my eyes grow dim with tears of pain
This hope I have will not be washed away
'Cause my soul is resting on Your higher ways
Maybe then You will take me aside
And show me the bigger picture
But until I'm with You
I'll be here with a heart that is true
And a soul that's resting on Your higher ways

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Steep Climb Up Ahead

I am all for mental preparation ~ If there's something I have committed to I want to know what to expect. My experiences in the past have gone well when I have faced a dark situation with this attitude,
Hope for the best, but expect the worse.
I know, it sounds a little pessimistic, even for me, but it's the truth. With that said, my sister gave me a book (Learning to Breathe, by Alison Wright) for my birthday that has been a great inspiration to me and I am only half way through the book. It's a story about a photojournalist who found herself in a almost fatal bus accident in a foreign country. I won't give away the whole plot, but she was a breath away from death and chose to live and fight through her injuries to live.

Last night I read a sentence that really resonated with me ~
"Even in the darkness all we can do is keep moving forward."
This reminds me that all I have to do is just keep putting one foot in front of the other and eventually I will find myself no longer in the inky darkness of pain. How's this for perfect imagery, yesterday was cold, windy, rainy, overcast, the sun never came out all day. A super dreary New England day. This morning I awoke to a brilliantly shining sun, crisp, cool air. Even after the darkest night the sun will rise in the East.

So, I am off to church this morning, then Skyler's b-day party followed by the Giant game ~ Hey, anyone out there following college football? How about my Texas Tech Red Raiders!!!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Happiness Is...

I am learning to find joy in the little things ~ anything to shed light on this narrow dark path. Reconnecting with friends on Facebook has brought me more joy that you can possibly imagine. So ~ what do you say to a friend when you are reconnecting after 20+ years? How do you sum up all those years since high school, since camp, since college?

It's a fine line ~ the boundaries between the safe answers and the raw, ugly truth are fuzzy. I am a straight shooter, maybe it's the Texas blood that pulsates through my veins. It's incredibly hard for me to BS my way through a conversation without mentioning the only thing on my mind, "Hey ~ did I tell you that I am having brain surgery in a couple of weeks?" There is no smooth transition. I find myself not sharing with some, because I know that they won't know what to say in return ~ what do you say? But seriously, it's still me ~ just because my brain is sliding out of my head doesn't define me completely. Although, it has put a damper on my bubbly personality.

Therein is the beauty of friendship ~ those who really know me offer prayers, support, a shoulder to lean on. Friends share life's joys, disappointments, sorrows ~ that's the glue that binds you. Life is messy ~ TRUE STORY ~ no matter what you are going through, no matter how dark and scary, know that if we are friends I will be there for you, no matter what might come strolling down your path. Don't be afraid to share your life, let someone join you in your journey. It makes life more bearable to have a friend walking by your side.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Hope Now ~

Time has been speeding up for me. My chiari friends have told me on numerous occasions that as my surgery date draws nearer time will speed up. So true and the last couple of months have been a blur. It's like I am on some kind of souped up auto pilot. Sure, I am pretty functional ~ I get my work done at work, keep up with house chores; but I feel as though i am walking around in someone elses body. True Story!

I am trying to stay focused with the tasks at hand for each day ~ it keeps my mind occupied. Although many thoughts take me away from focusing on the Lord, I am quietly reminded with words of encouragement that I am His ~ He is in control. It's a daily struggle ~ surrendering over and over again my fears and anxiety over brain surgery. oi!

I wanted to share the lyrics below of a song that has lifted me up.

Hope Now ~ Addison Road

If everything comes down to love
Then just what am I afraid of
When I call out Your name
Something inside awakes in my soul
How quickly I forget I'm Yours

I'm not my own
I've been carried by You
All my life(

Everything rides on hope now
Everything rides on faith somehow
When the world has broken me down
Your love sets me free

When my life is like a storm
Rising waters when all I want is the shore
You say I'll be ok and
Make it through the rain
You are my shelter from the storm


I'm not my ownI've been carried by You
All my life

Everything rides on hope now
Everything rides on faith somehow
When the world has broken me down
Your love sets me free

Everything rides on hope now
Everything rides on faith somehow
When the world has broken me down
Your love sets me free

You've become my hearts desire
I will sing Your praises higher
Cause Your love sets me free
Your love sets me free
Your love sets me free