I Feel Guilty….

Guilt.

I feel guilty.

Why am I so heartbroken?

My mind won’t stop racing.

Why have I shed so many tears over someone I did not know?

I feel guilty.

The recent news of a beautiful girl with Cystic Fibrosis passing away at far too young of an age has rocked my world.

I didn’t know Claire, nor did I follow her journey with Cystic Fibrosis. It was only one week ago that I even learned that this girl existed.

A friend of mine had posted on social media that Claire would be undergoing a lung transplant soon, so I decided to follow her journey. I watched a couple of her previously recorded you-tube videos and liked her social media accounts.

This girl had something unique about her. She was charismatic and brutally open and honest about living with a terminal disease. I began praying for her and started sharing posts to my social media accounts for others to join me in prayer.

A few days after her lung transplant surgery she passed away. I first want to say that I cannot imagine what her parents, family, and friends are going through. Unbearable is all I can imagine.

I found myself heartbroken when I read the news last night. I prayed for her family and I bawled like a baby. Once I wiped away my tears I began to feel overwhelmed with guilt.

Who am I to feel so heartbroken?

I didn’t know this girl.

Who am I to be so distraught about this beautiful soul no longer blessing the world with her presence?

I feel guilty.

I feel guilty because there are people in this world who are truly mourning the death of their loved one.

I feel guilty for somehow not being able to differentiate between her Cystic Fibrosis battle and ours.

I feel guilty for sobbing because it scares me to death to think the “what if’s” for the future of our family.

I feel guilty because who I am to feel the pain of a death of someone I didn’t even know.

I feel guilty.

Cancer

Diabetes

Drug abuse/overdose

Cystic Fibrosis….(just to name a few)

When someone you don’t even know is affected by something you are affected by you feel a connection. You are compassionate. You are empathetic. You love them, because you don’t even have to know them to know some of what their life was life.

You understand the battles they faced on a daily basis. You understand what life is like fighting Cystic Fibrosis.

I cannot help but TRY to put myself in the shoes of others. The pain. The agony. The unimaginable of what her family is going through…. it is heartbreaking. But I CANNOT actually put myself in their shoes. My daughter doesn’t need a lung transplant at this time and hopefully never will. My daughter doesn’t require supplemental oxygen. My daughter hasn’t ever been told she might die (Actually she has but that was not CF related.. was secondary to a car accident). My daughter is here on this earth with me still. I get to hug her and hold her, see her, talk to her, and touch her still.

And for those reasons above is exactly why I feel so guilty.

I am thanking GOD for all of my blessings… large and small. For none of us know when our time here on earth is going to be done.

I am so sorry for Claire’s family and any other person who has lost a child to CF or any other reason. ❀️

If you are reading this and are affected by Cystic Fibrosis then I want to say we are here for you. You are like family to us and your pain is our pain. Your struggle is our struggle. We need to beat this disease. And we need each other to keep fighting.

Here is my CF warrior. She is probably going to get upset when she sees the photo I attached but that’s just what us moms do πŸ€·πŸΌβ€β™€οΈ

My HERO ❀️❀️

GOD BLESS!

Big Girls Do Cry

We all know the song “Big Girls Don’t Cry” by the Four Seasons.

If you are quite a bit younger than I am maybe you are more familiar with Fergie’s song “Big Girls Don’t Cry”.

I actually love both of these songs, however I don’t agree that big girls don’t cry. If that was a fact than I am the furthest thing away from a big girl!

I am unsure when it began but at some point in my life I started hiding my tears. I was a strong mother of two beautiful daughters. I was a wife. I was in graduate school and working full time. I then became a Nurse Practitioner and was caring for others. Someone like me had too much going on to cry; let alone cry in front of others.

I would push my feelings aside because it was “selfish” to have my own feelings, right? I had other people’s feelings I had to worry about and manage.

It wasn’t until some major traumas in my life that I discovered it was okay to have my own feelings. It was okay to break down and cry. And it certainly was okay and NOT SELFISH to talk about my feelings.

Crying as I am writing this blog I am overwhelmed with emotion. Life isn’t always easy. Life isn’t always fair. Shit, at times life can really suck big time. But why is it that I ever felt the need to hold it all in and to try to cope with it myself? In fact I was not coping with it. I was attempting to bury it deep within… that’s far from coping with things.

One should never be okay with holding it all in. Over time that leads to stress on the body and eventually will cause chaos on your hormones and your health. It can also lead to physical and mental exhaustion. There is only one person who is to carry all the burdens and that is GOD.

Over time I became less apologetic for crying. I became unashamed of my tears and in fact I embraced it and share it. I even posted a deep, raw photo of myself bawling after receiving some bad news about our daughters health. Because it’s REALITY and it’s okay.

It’s time we get over thinking that crying is for babies. It’s time we stop beating ourselves up over having our own feelings and getting emotional about them. I love life. I am so passionate about many things that when I’m hurt, scared, or angry I cry. It’s because I love hard. It’s because I have been hurt. It’s because I am fearful of what is to come. And there is no shame in that.

Crying is not the only way I have began working on my inner being. Other things that have helped me “let it all out”….

  • Journaling
  • Talking to a Christian counselor
  • Talking to my husband and my family and my closest friends
  • Reading the Bible
  • Sitting in silence and just gathering my thoughts
  • Going for peaceful long walks
  • Praying

I understand that exercise is a stress reliever but it is not always what you should be doing to your body. If your body is stressed then exercise can put added stress on the body. Just be cautious and LISTEN to your body.

It’s time to come out of the hiding and to show the world there is nothing wrong with tears. Remember big girls DO cry and the strongest girls aren’t afraid to show it or share it.

GOD BLESS!

What I Never Expected

Every child has dreams of what their adult lives are going to be.

  • Adulthood is going to be so much fun.
  • I will get to make my own decisions.
  • I get to eat and wear whatever I want
  • I am going to marry the spouse of my dreams, live in a big house, and life will be perfect with my perfect little children
  • If you are a girl then you probably cut out all of those pictures from a magazine and glued them into your “my future” photo album like I did. 🀣
  • The above is basically what we all think before we enter adulthood. Why would life be anything different, right?!
  • Here I am today, almost 37 years old and doing something I never imagined I would ever be doing.
  • Today I am filling out paperwork for Make a Wish as our daughter was just approved for her wish.
  • We received the “approval” a few months ago and life got busy so I am just now getting to it.
  • Okay Stacy…. is that really why? Or does part of me want to put it off so I don’t have to accept reality? ….. things to ponder.

  • Make A Wish is an incredible organization that provides one wish to a child diagnosed with a terminal illness. Yes, a terminal illness. And yes, I cannot type those words without crying. To be approved for a wish does not mean the child has a current poor prognosis or even a current decline of health.
  • As I printed out the paperwork I cried. Why exactly I cried I do not know. Possibly part happy tears as our daughter is going to be able to create one wish that is for herself. She will have no sister and no parents to compromise with. She will basically have zero restrictions on the wish. It is HER wish that will be created with a team of Make A Wish volunteers.
  • Insert my tears again…. 😒😒
  • What us parents wouldn’t give every single day to see our children happy.
  • The other part of my tears were definitely sad tears. Natalie’s childhood dreams are so different from the majority of other children. She is thinking of where she is going to live in college that is sanitary and conducive to her daily CF treatments. She is wondering if she will be able to have children and what percent chance does her offspring have of being born with CF. She is dreaming of a day with no medication… not who she will marry and what her house will look like. She is dreaming of the day there is a cure for CF so her mind and body can finally rest and be at peace.
  • Filling out this paperwork does not change Gods plan for our daughter. God has an incredible plan for Natalie and I can say that with 100% confidence and faith in our God. I have seen him work miracles within our daughter and I believe he has created her to do BIG things in this world.
  • Filling out this paperwork does not mean the end is near. Filling out this paperwork does not change anything of the present; it simply adds a wish to our daughters future.
  • Today, I am doing something I never expected. Today, I am wiping away my tears and filling out this paperwork so our daughter can begin planning her one true wish. Today, I am giving it ALL to God…. my worries, my fear, my uncertainty I lay at his feet.
  • Dear Heavenly Father, I pray for all families who are affected by a terminal illness as I know how difficult they can be. God, please give these families the strength to continue fighting their disease/illness and the comfort to know that no matter the struggle that you are always by our side and you will never leave us. I pray for energy and optimal health for the affected individuals. Allow their bodies some rest and peace today. We pray these things in your glorious name.
  • Amen.
  • GOD BLESS!
  • Worse Than Lip Injections Gone WrongΒ 

    I really did not want to write this blog. I knew along with the blog that I was going to need to post pictures and they are embarrassing. I have been thinking about writing on this subject matter for about one year now. Today I decided to stop the doubt. Why be embarrassed when this was my reality? So here we go….

    It was October 2016 and after a dinner date with the hubs the evening prior I woke up with extremely dry, painful, and swollen lips. What in the world is going on with my lips?

    I was dealing with my food sensitivities and what we thought at the time was a hypothyroid condition (normal TSH, mildly low T3). I reviewed everything I ate the day before. Chicken? No. Dairy? No. Gluten? No…. No. No. No. I triple checked my list of food sensitivities and could not figure it out until it hit me.. Adam drank some red wine! I was certain I had some sort of reaction to his red wine. Why would his red wine affect me?… well duh… I said we had a date night!! I don’t know about your marriage but in ours, date nights always involve a lot of kissing.

    πŸ’‹πŸ’‹πŸ’‹πŸ’‹πŸ’‹

    I was irritated. Here I am with dry, swollen lips all because of my husband. My husband thought I was a bit crazy. You will later learn that darn it–my husband was right!

    I waited a few days for the wine to get out of my system so my lips could resolve, but no resolution came. And in fact, they got worse. This was day one:

    This was insane! What in the world was going on now?! I still was not feeling well and now I have to deal with painful, swollen lips?! I went to my primary care doctor for complaints of dizziness, heart palpitations, brain fog, and the lip swelling. She ran several labs. As for the swollen lips she was a bit perplexed and thought it was allergy related. Other than the recent food sensitivities I had not suffered from a single allergy my entire life. This made zero sense. I was told to stop lathering on chapstick and to get some non-scented vaseline.

    Fast forward one week later…. I could not handle the lips any longer! They were getting worse! They were still swollen and painful and now they started developing pustules. The corners of my mouth were cracked.

    I was a MESS and I felt hopeless. At this point I asked one of my best friends if I could get in and see the doctor that she was working for. He diagnosed me with a fungal infection of the lips. Fungus on my lips?! Gross! But hey, at least I had hope now!

    I was placed on topical medications and within a few days my symptoms improved. I was told to take the medications for 14 days so that is exactly what I did. My lips began to go back to normal but after about 10 days off of treatment my lips began to swell up again. I was frustrated. Maybe it was not a fungal infection?!

    I went back and forth in my mind constantly. I googled and researched all day every day to figure out what was going on. Side note: PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE be your own advocate!!! Don’t stop searching until you get answers! End side note πŸ˜ƒ.

    My symptoms got better with the treatment which tells me it had to be fungal related, however it came back once I stopped treatment. Why was it not taking care of the problem?

    I have TWO WORDS for you…. BREAST IMPLANTS. My breast implants were a huge breeding source for fungus and it played a role in having a decreased immune system that allowed all sorts of nasty crud to come nest in my body. When my chest cavity was swabbed during my breast implant removal surgery the culture came back positive for all sorts of fungus. Imagine how disgusting I initially felt after hearing of my diagnoses. Fungus in my chest wall? Fungus in my mouth? Fungus in my gut?!

    After I got my breast implants removed I took a few months worth of natural supplements to kill off the fungus and ta-da! The fungus went away. My lips were not sore or painful. They were not dry or swollen. They were back to my normal!

    My brother and sister thought it was humorous as I was experiencing this “worse than lip injections gone wrong” journey. They were supportive and concerned but we also have the kind of relationship that we can make light of all situations. Basically they just enjoy bullying me 🀣🀣🀣-joking!

    They surprised me by trying to not make me feel like an outcast with my swollen lips! Lol! How great are they?! ❀️❀️

    Brest implant illness is a serious thing. Do not risk your health for a new set of boobs. Symptoms for me did not come on over night (some peoples do). This was years in the making. When I finally realized what was going on my one or two symptoms had already turned into probably close to 20! Life is too short to waste it being sick.

    GODBLESS!

    Oh It Gets My Blood Boiling

    Over twelve years ago I fell in love with a blonde hair, blue eyed baby girl. She was our second daughter and she was so itty bitty. We named her Natalie. From the moment she was born (just like our first one) I knew I would protect her at any cost.

    Fast forward to when Natalie was four months old and was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis….. Cystic what?! Cystic Fibrosis. Look it up. Educate yourself on the disease. So now my mama protector role just majorly stepped up it’s game.

    I went from making sure my child was breathing and not bumping her head into furniture while crawling to doing breathing treatments, sterilizing the s**t out of everything, being the “did you wash your hands” patrol, and a germaphobe. Not quite what I expected in life but I didn’t think twice about it because I am passionate about my daughter and her health.

    So, what exactly is it that “makes my blood boil”? Well here we go…..

    Cystic Fibrosis is primarily a lung disease. These poor kids and adults don’t get to just simply breathe. They struggle to breathe. Their lungs are full of thick, sticky mucus which makes it feel as if they are breathing through a straw. They tire easily as their bodies are trying to fight off the excess mucus and the infections. So…. here we have a child who already has compromised lungs and people CHOOSE to smoke cigarettes near them, before and after holding/hugging them etc! That is second hand smoke and it’s not good for anyone, let alone these sweet children who have this nasty disease.

    I am told stories of parents who still smoke after receiving the diagnosis that their child has CF. The smoke is on your hair, your nails, your skin, and your entire body! Then you cuddle up next to your child with CF and they get it into their body. They are exposed to it. You are exposing your child to this harmful substance.

    My daughter is twelve years old and for as long as I can remember when she sees someone smoking in the distance she plugs her nose and we give her the “All Clear” when the smell is gone. That crap is BAD!! And our sweet girl tries to do all she can to stay healthy and out of the hospital.

    My frustration isn’t towards all smokers. You may be smoking a cigarette in a corner and have no idea that the girl walking past you has CF. I get it. You are not smoking then knowingly hanging around someone with a lung disease. So please take no offense to what I am saying.

    Mucus and inflammation is already a problem with people suffering from Cystic Fibrosis. Add second hand smoke and it makes those things worse. It can cause chronic inflammation, which nobody needs. It can also lead to further lung damage and infection. Did you know that in people with CF, smoke exposure decreases their lung function by at least 10 percent? 😱

    I have a job to do and that job is to protect my family; especially my already ill child. And oh does it get my blood a boiling when I hear or see someone smoking around their already ill child.

    I do not judge those who smoke. That is their own issue… just please don’t make it mine.

    As a passionate CF mama there is nothing I wouldn’t do to protect my child. My family is my life. ❀️❀️

    If you have a loved one with CF and you currently smoke and want to stop please contact me or your doctor to learn how! Do it for your child. Really, you ought to stop for your own health.

    GOD BLESS!

    A Day of Miracles and Inspiration- Part 2

    Do you remember the old Charlie Brown scenes where the teacher is speaking and all the student hears is “wha wha wha wha”? That was exactly what I was hearing when the doctors told me the extent of my injuries. I was unable to listen. I was unable to even care about what they were saying. I immediately asked the physician “What’s the news with my daughter? Where is she?”

    Natalie never came back to that trauma room that afternoon. As I was lying on the cold hard exam table, shaking uncontrollably with a bladder ready to burst, all I cared about was Natalie. I remember feeling numb other than the worry I had for my daughter. The doctors began to tell me about Natalie.

    Natalie has suffered extensive injuries. Her spleen is in pieces. She has blood on the brain. Her intestines do not look good. She is going to need a life threatening surgery and we are unsure of the outcome. She may be shipped to Denver.

    Tears began to flood my face. My heart felt like it was in one million pieces. My body was flat against the cold hard table and I was unable to lift myself up to wipe my tears. They continued to flood my face and my neck. I got my face sutured and did not feel a thing. I was completely numb at this point. I do not remember much else about the trauma room except for the poor mans face as he was giving me this grim news. I was devastated.

    I got wheeled up to my room in my bed and I remember seeing my mother in the hallway causing somewhat of a commotion (later I found out she caused one heck of a commotion because she wanted answers and she wanted them yesterday. I can appreciate that about my mother. She loves her family to pieces). As I approached my room I saw two of my very good friends in the hallway waiting for me. The tears I saw in their eyes is an image I will never forget. One friend later told me she was certain I was going to lose my baby that day and she did not know how she was going to help me through it.

    I was numb. I had not eaten since breakfast and had zero appetite. My friends were at my bedside while Adam was with Natalie. The doctors at St. Francis did not feel comfortable performing such a high risk surgery on Natalie so they were thinking of flying her to Colorado immediately. The pediatric surgeon at Wesley was not comfortable doing it on her own, however, thankfully the Chief surgeon for Wesley agreed to assist. Both surgeons were going to take on this challenge together. Praise God! My daughter did not have to leave Wichita.

    Before Natalie and Adam left for Wesley he ran up to my room. He did not have much time. He sat at the edge of my bed, held my hand, and began crying.

    The Wesley surgeon agreed to do the surgery. It is going to take 5-6 hours. They said it is extremely high risk. Stacy, she may not make it.

    She may not make it.

    She may not make it.

    She may not make it.

    That was all I could hear.

    How was this happening? It was not possible that I may never see my daughter again. We were just at church. She was supposed to be going to a play date. She was in school. She was so energetic and so lovable… this just could not be. Just the day prior we were out eating lunch together at her favorite spot.. Freddy’s. This was not real life.

    Adam rushed out of my room to be with Natalie. I then began to think about what the doctors told me about my injuries…

    You have fractured a vertebrae and will need to wear a back brace for 8 weeks.

    We are unsure if your pelvis is fractured. There is too much swelling to tell.

    Your right ankle is broken.

    Your left foot is broken.

    Your left ankle is sprained (later found out it was also broken).

    I was devastated but I quickly changed my thoughts back to Natalie. I needed to get out of that hospital and over to Wesley ASAP. My friends tried to get me to eat but I could not. I ate a couple of bites of pizza and received a second dose of minimal pain medication. I have never been able to tolerate pain medication very well, so I only wanted a minimal amount, but I needed something. My back hurt so very badly. It was the worst pain I have ever been in… and I gave birth naturally so I know pain! 😳🀣

    The house officer of St. Francis finally came into my room to tell me that they were going to make an exception to their policy and allow me to transfer to Wesley. Usually if you leave the hospital without being medically stable insurance will not cover anything beyond that point. They handled everything in a way that I would not be cheated for simply wanting to be near my daughter. I am forever grateful to both hospitals for their hospitality.

    The rest of the evening is blurry. I was transferred and admitted to Wesley Medical Center that night. Shortly after I was admitted Adam and Britney walked in. Adam sat on my bed and held my hand.

    Stacy, she is out of surgery. The doctor said what they saw on the scans was NOT what they saw when they opened her up. The doctors have no explanation other than a it is a pure miracle. It is a MIRACLE. She is going to be okay.

    We cried together as we held hands. We were not able to hug as I could not bend or twist due to my broken vertebrae.

    A miracle. God saved our daughters life that day. God performed a miracle that I was not sure was even possible. That moment, that day, this entire experience has changed my life forever. God performs miracles for reasons we do not understand and we do not need to. We just need to have faith and know nothing is impossible with him.

    Back to the hospital…

    Adam continued on…

    They are uncertain of the severity of blood on the brain so they are taking precautions and will repeat scans soon. She will need to have the neck brace on for awhile. She did have some cuts on her spleen and her intestines that were repaired, but overall everything looked okay. They cut her open down the middle of her abdomen and she has about an 10 inch incision. She is on a pain pump and is still asleep.

    That is all I remember about our conversation. Adam may remember it differently as I was traumatized and in pain.

    I remember having a friend turn on the news and I learned of what actually happened to our family that day. I went from numbness to anger and then back to numbness in a matter of minutes. I laid in that hospital bed unable to move, unable to even urinate in the bed pan without extreme pain, unable to think clearly, and unable to feel anything. I heard voices of family members and friends but none of the words would sink in. My mind was on my babies. My two precious daughters who I would have given my life for on that day in order for them to be okay.

    Somehow my husband had convinced Wesley to wheel me down in my bed to the PICU where Natalie was at. As they wheeled me into the room I saw my courageous warrior of a daughter lying in her bed…..lifeless. She was hooked up to multiple machines and had multiple tubes/lines attached to her body. The tears began to flow slowly. It wasn’t until I held her fragile little hand that I became sobbing uncontrollably.

    I cried and cried and cried some more. Where was my energetic, full of life, sassy little Natalie?

    She was nowhere to be found.

    She gave me some reassurance as her hand gripped mine gently. She was weak, but she was alive. How could I ask for anything more?

    My daughter was alive! I was uncertain of the future but my daughter was still on this earth with me. Her hand was in mine and I felt the presence of GOD. I felt comforted by the man who chose to spare my daughters life on that April 19, 2015.

    I am so grateful that my husband was there with us that day. He used to travel a lot and I know God placed him home that day because we needed him.

    While writing this blog I am reminded of the guilt I experienced by not being there for Britney. Adam was with Natalie, so I did not suffer from much guilt (yes still some guilt) for not being there for her, but Britney was basically parentless. Sure she had two sets of awesome grandparents step up to the plate but grandparents are not parents. She also had incredible friends assist her in so many ways. I am grateful that she is so selfless and mature and understood the trials that we were facing. Britney Lynn, you were amazingly brave on that day and throughout this entire journey! ❀️

    April 19, 2015 was a day of miracles. I am a firm believer in the power of prayer and we had people all over the country praying for us. Social media blew up. Gifts and cards were sent. It was amazing.

    God, thank you so much for the blessings you have provided us with.

    Part 3 of this journey will be written in the future. Summer has been busy and I am enjoying the time with my family.

    I ask every single one of you to hug your family a little tighter tonight. We never know when our time here on earth is complete.

    God Bless!!

    Love One Another

    My heart is breaking for the recent amount of suicides that have been in the news. It is horrific to think that someone can be in so much pain that they choose to take their own life. As a Christian woman this truly saddens me.

    Why is it when people are suffering from depression and/or anxiety or really any mental illness at all, they shy away from talking about it? My daughter has Cystic Fibrosis and I don’t ever shy away from speaking about it. My thoughts are, as a society we have told people with mental illness that

    It’s all in your head.

    Stop being so negative.

    You can change the way you think.

    Get over it.

    You’re just mentally weak

    Etc…

    This is bullshit. Can someone “get over” their diabetes? Is heart failure “all in your head”? No! Mental illness is a serious medical issue. Yes, I said medical issue.

    Now sure there are what I would refer to as Negative Nancy’s of the world. The people who tend to always be surrounded by drama. The people who see the glass half empty; not half full. Those are not the people I am referring to. I am referring to those with mental illness.

    I had a great bible study this past week which really impacted my thinking. I think of myself as an extremely caring person. My friends pain is my pain. However was I being as godly as I could be? No. I decided that evening that I was going to do better. I was going to love all people. Not superficially, but truly love the people that ones may consider unlovable.

    God changed my mindset last week and I would like to share it.

    Imagine that person who you think is unlovable or the person you try to avoid because you don’t like them….what if I told you

    Her husband is having an affair on her

    His father who is his only friend is dying of cancer

    Her mother verbally abuses her. Tells her she is fat, not good enough etc.

    She is addicted to gambling and has spent her entire life savings and doesn’t know how to make her house payment

    She goes to school every day and is bullied for wearing dirty clothes or for having a certain color of hair

    She has no family or friends and stays home all day and binge eats in bed to make herself feel better; just to end up actually making her feel more ashamed of herself for binge eating and being overweight

    He is caring for a son who is suffering from diabetes and the medication costs more than the income he brings in

    Would knowing this now make that person lovable?

    We as humans are judgers and I am guilty as well. We never know what people are going through and I believe if we just simply cared more about people we would have less suicides. STOP selfishly caring about how the person treats you, how they dress, what habits they have etc and do what we all are called to do… Love one another.

    Reach out to the person you view as unlovable and reach out without judgment. Maybe they need a friend. Maybe they need to tell you what they are dealing with instead of holding it all in all alone. Maybe they need to hear your testimony. Maybe, just maybe YOU will be the reason they decide not to end their life.

    GOD BLESS!

    I lost my voice

    Hello! It has been quite a long time since I have written. I temporarily lost my voice.

    From time to time I sat down to blog and after the first couple of sentences I went blank. I was too distracted and I was unable to focus long enough to write. BUT… I am hoping that writing this means I am BACK!!!

    I had been in a valley for awhile now. When things first began to decline I thought I was in the valley but boy was I wrong! That was not a valley.. that was just a bump in the road. Life just throws crap at you from time to time. I would imagine most of you have experienced some crap in your life, right?! If you have never been smacked in the face by a pile of s**t then count your blessings because that time is sure to come!!! That is figuratively not literally speaking…. at least I hope!

    I was already going through difficult times and then our youngest daughter with Cystic Fibrosis was diagnosed with chronic pseudomonas. I then experienced yet another emotional roller coaster as I had to sort through all of my feelings regarding this matter after we got out of survival mode of making long term health care decisions.

    I began to have mild panic attacks. At times I felt like I could not breathe. I suggested to my husband that we get away. We needed to de-stress as a family. We immediately booked a trip to Disney World and left the following week!

    We had a blast! Unfortunately Natalie and Adam did not feel very well on one of the days we were there. I felt horrible for them. Bless their hearts-they pushed through and made it without having to go back to the resort. I was non-stop worrying for both of them. Why is it as mothers and wives we feel the need to take on their stresses and their illnesses? We are not Superwomen! I mean.. we ARE but we aren’t. If you are a woman you know what I mean!

    Each day we were up early in the morning to get to the parks and up late into the nighttime to make sure we got each and every ride in. It was a great adventurous long weekend.

    And I came home exhausted.

    When we got back home my husband could tell I was still pretty stressed, so graciously he stepped up his “daddy” duties and got up with Natalie to do her medications. Typically, I just take care of it without any thought. 3 mornings or maybe even 4 out of 5 that school week he got up at 5:30am and let me sleep until we had to get the girls off to school. It was great and so appreciated.

    It was not until a few days and a whole lot of arguments between my husband and I later that I realized getting away to Disney World and being on the go was not ALL I needed. The trip was great for the family, but now I knew exactly what I needed… a break.

    As mothers we just do not get a break. We are constantly doing so much physically and mentally for our children AND our husbands. We run the household and with all of the added stress that was thrown our way these past couple of months I so badly needed a break from it all!

    I needed a break from fighting with insurance companies. I needed a break from my ever growing to-do list. I needed a break from laundry, packing lunches, medication routines, transporting kiddos, arguments, and even just thinking about it all. I NEEDED A BREAK!

    Of course, naturally I felt guilty. I felt bad for wanting to leave my husband and my kiddos.

    Are they going to take that as me not loving them or liking them?

    Can I really get away and leave my husband to handle everything?

    I know he is capable, but is it “right” of me to do this?

    Is this selfish of me?

    I later had a moment of clarity…. Mama needed to take care of herself.

    I left the following Friday early in the morning and headed to the TableRock lake area. The plan was to be in nature and to be away from distractions…. stress, phones, responsibility etc. The day was care free. I tried to not talk about my “problems” and just soaked up the scenery. There is something very peaceful about being away in your own thoughts in nature.

    Self care is so important. Probably one of the top 5 most important things in life that we all need but yet we just don’t tend to do. Self care is not selfish. Self care is nothing to feel guilty about. Self care is a necessity.

    I failed at self care and it took my voice temporarily. I was in crisis/survival mode and could not get out.

    Well I AM BACK!!!!

    Please take a moment and evaluate if you are in need of self care. When was the last time you did something for yourself that rejuvenated your entire being?

    –side note: I have had multiple people reach out and yes I am fully aware I have not completed part two of our car accident blog. It is almost completed and I will post when done. My mind has been elsewhere. As always I appreciate all of your feedback, comments etc

    GOD BLESS!

    Rising Above

    I think of myself as a strong Christian woman. I try to live and love like Jesus. I genuinely care about all walks of people. And although I can say the above without any doubt I do realize I am human. I am not perfect and I do not always act like God would want me to. If I did then wouldn’t I be God?

    I was tested last week. I am going to share this story and I hope you get something out of it.

    I was informed by a great friend that a couple of women who I would consider acquaintances now and maybe at one point I would have considered at least one of them a friend had been talking badly about me. I have not seen these women in over one year.

    Stacy Wessley is the fakest person I know.

    What the what?!!!! I would be lying or also known as fake (🀣🀣🀣) if I said this did not hurt my feelings at first. I do not like anyone to have bad thoughts about me. My teenage daughter heard this conversation and her jaw dropped. My mom is the least fake person ever! She posts pictures of her crying. She talks about her cellulite. She is so real and a great role model.

    Like I previously said, I was angered and really confused at first. Why in the world would somebody say that and why would somebody say that about someone they do not even talk to/associate with etc?! Sadly enough children were a part of this conversation as well! πŸ€¦πŸΌβ€β™€οΈπŸ€·πŸΌβ€β™€οΈπŸ€·πŸΌβ€β™€οΈ Honestly, because we are not being fake here, I wanted to say bad things about these people. I wanted to be like oh they think I’m fake well they are……… but I did not. I decided to rise above. I do not know these individuals very well and have never had any bad interaction with them. I do not know their hearts. I only know them based on these actions and their actions speak volumes.

    It took me maybe a whole two minutes for me to become unbothered by this conversation. I immediately began feeling sad for these individuals and the others (including children) involved in this conversation. I said a prayer for them.

    I do not hold grudges. I do not hate anyone. I am sure I will see these women in the future and say hello or wave. Is that being fake? No. I do not harbor any bad feelings against them. I would approach them as I would approach any other acquaintance.

    Their issues that they have with me is really not an issue with me. It is an issue within themselves. I do not take it personally. These kind of people talk about everybody, so why get offended? I did nothing wrong. I am real. I love who I am. I do not want to or need to impress anyone. I do not need to put anyone down to make me feel better about myself. I am me.

    If you are in a situation with drama or negativity please RISE ABOVE. People who are hurting within themselves try to hurt others. Do not take it personally. Just RISE ABOVE.

    GOD BLESS!

    A Day of Miracles and Inspiration-Part 1

    Nooooooooo!!!” I screamed. I braced myself as I hear the screeching tires and see the spinning white car forcefully hit our windshield. Then another hit. And then again once more. It all happened so quickly, but at the same time all was in slow motion.

    I remember thinking this must be a movie. I remember thinking this cannot be real. As I open my eyes and see the flying debris, the smoke, the bloody airbag, and the cars in front of me at a halt I could not determine if this was a nightmare or real life.

    The pain in my back was as sharp as a knife. I immediately call my precious daughters names… “Britney?! Natalie?!” Britney responded. Her voice was so innocent and I could hear the fear. Natalie only grunted. I turn around and all I can see is blood coming from her mouth. She was awake but not well. Her eyes and lifeless body suddenly told me that something was seriously wrong with her.

    The pain begins to worsen in my back and now I feel the pain in my feet as I see blood dripping from my face. I look down and see both ankles the size of softballs. I cannot walk. I push the door open and begin yelling “HELP!”. I instruct Britney to get out of the car after I make sure she is okay. I tell her to watch for cars (yes, even in traumatic events I have my protective mama bear instinct in me). She starts running in the smoke filled street. HELP! Please help us!

    A tiny, beautiful, brave, injured, traumatized, innocent little blonde hair girl having to run to get help.

    Within what felt like seconds I saw a swarm of people running our way. Selfless, generous, genuine, caring individuals. These people were purposefully placed in our paths that day. The details are blurry as I had only one thing on my mind… my children.

    I was then lifted from my drivers seat from a man I have never met and that I would never see again. I only allowed him to take me once I knew someone was taking care of Natalie. I lost sight of her for a few moments and I panicked. I saw flames. Where was Natalie??!! Britney was already on the opposite side of the street where I would be placed on the grass for safety. Britney has always been such a mama bear. She was standing on the grass keeping her eyes on Natalie and myself to make sure we were taken care of properly. She later told me that she was not scared. She knew what she had to do. Her fear did not set in until we settled in the ambulance and she got to actually look calmly at Natalie.

    Natalie was placed in the grass behind me maybe 20 feet away. I heard a lot of people yelling. Commotion everywhere. People running to the flames.

    “Natalie! Natalie! Mommy is coming!”

    I was instructed to lie flat to protect my neck and back. I was instructed to also stay still, but no amount of pain, debility, or instruction was going to keep me from my baby.

    I started scooting myself along the grass. I did as good as I could with a broken back, two broken ankles, and a broken foot. I was trying my best to keep my body flat while I scooted along the grass to hold my daughters hand. I finally got close enough to her that she could hear my voice and I could touch and see her. She was not well. Her voice was weak.

    Mom, my stomach hurts. It really hurts.

    I could hear how badly she was in pain by her voice. I told her not to speak any more. I wanted her to save up all of her energy. I did not know what lied ahead but I wanted her to have rest. I wanted her to be calm and to not stress. Several people began praying over her. Others were attending to her needs and asking her questions.

    My husband arrived after he had received a phone call from a stranger on my phone telling him Your family was in a horrible wreck. You need to get here as soon as you can. He fortunately was only a couple of miles away as we had left Sunday church close to the same time. My father and my husband were going to play golf while the girls and I were headed home. He ran down the street from the nearest stoplight as fast as he could as my father was not driving fast enough for his liking. He came to me first and I told him to go to Natalie. He then knelt down beside her and immediately pulled out some of her teeth that were just sitting in her blood filled mouth. The terror I felt when I heard someone ask my husband “will you grab those teeth so she doesn’t swallow them?”

    “God, what just happened??? God, please save us! God please save Natalie”.

    I began bartering with God. I began telling him what all I would give up in order to save my daughters life. I begged of him to take my life and to spare hers. Yes, I realize this is not how God works. In the moment of crisis I needed to tell God how to handle the situation because that was all I could do. I had zero control. Our lives were in his hands and possibly for the very first time ever I realized that our lives are always in his hands. In between talking to Natalie and to the emergency room physician who just so happened to be at the church right by the wreck I kept praying.

    “God, please heal Natalie. Take away her pain.”

    I never prayed for myself. It never even crossed my mind. I did ask God “why us?” a lot on that April 19th, 2015. Otherwise I wanted my children to be safe and to feel no pain.

    We were finally lifted into the ambulance. My pain seemed unbearable. I began shaking uncontrollably and became very angry. “What is taking so long? Let’s go! This is an emergency!” Never mind my pain. My daughter needed help and she needed it awhile ago. She continued to complain that her stomach hurt and by this time she was having difficulty talking. Natalie began grunting again.

    It hurts mommy.

    It hurts.

    I am so tired.

    I want to sleep.

    I just want to close my eyes.

    “Don’t you stop talking to me Natalie. You cannot sleep right now, okay? Please keep talking to me. You keep fighting.” My heart was in 1000 pieces at this point. I was dying inside for my little Natalie.

    Britney, Adam, and myself were all telling Natalie she had to keep here eyes open. I am a Nurse Practitioner and I know how important it is to stay awake after an event like this. I refused to let her fall asleep!

    Britney had reassured me time and time again that she was okay. Her chest was hurting and I could see a horrible burn from the seatbelt. She was brave. She was so strong and mature. She made a call to our friend Jill who was expecting Natalie for a play date to let her know she would not be there because we were heading to the hospital.

    The moaning and the pain continued for Natalie.

    It hurts.

    Ouch it hurts!

    My stomach!!!!!!!

    The ambulance ride seemed to have taken forever. We finally arrived at St. Francis hospital and they wheeled us into the emergency trauma area in a hurry. Doctors, nurses, and resident physicians were all around me. While other doctors, nurses, and resident physicians were hovering around Natalie. They were asking us a billion questions while they were cutting off our clothing and examining us. I kept telling them I wanted Natalie to be addressed first and they reassured me she was being examined at the same time. All I could think about was Natalie. “Natalie, stay awake sweetie. You have to fight Natalie! You can sleep later!” I would hear her soft little voice respond to me with an one word response. She was still moaning.

    We eventually went our separate ways when we both needed MRI’s and CT scans done. As they wheeled Natalie out of the room I told her “I love you Natalie. You do not stop fighting.”

    That was the last I saw of Natalie until many of hours later. It was not until after I underwent my testing that I learned that I may never get to see my baby again…..

    People are placed in our lives for a reason. The incredible people placed at the scene of the accident was not by mistake or by chance. God placed them there. God is great. God is my best friend. God can move mountains. Do not lose your faith in our God. He is mighty. He is good and he is gracious.

    Part 2 of my story of miracles and inspiration will be posted soon…. stay tuned.

    GOD BLESS!