Saturday, December 31, 2011

A year marked by love

Saturday, December 31, 2011 ~ The last day of 2011
Reading: Choosing to See by MaryBeth Chapman
What's on my mind: laughing in the face of tradgedies (Don't ask), the new year's eve party tonight, what happened in this year
Songs that were listened to today: Fences by Paramore (Quickly becoming my new favorite, described by me as deliciously morbid, again, don't ask)
Wearing: Dessert PJ pants and a pink tee shirt, but definatly changing later as I am not wearing this to the party tonight.

I hope the year 2012 brings:


  • more happiness, and love, and hope

  • growth in my relationship with God, and in my relationships with others

  • My 16th Birthday

What else can I really ask for? If I have happiness and love, and am continuing to grow, and have life, what else can I really ask for?


The year 2011 brought:



  • the entrance to my sophmore year of high school, and to the age 15

  • The best summer ever, full of life and love and learning, and so many memories

  • A book, a novel produced by my imagination

  • The loss of a good friend, Spencer

  • walking through a time of undiagnosed

  • growth in my relationship with God, and in my life

  • the realization that I am still becoming, and that that's ok

  • Friends ~ amazing, beautiful, loving friends

  • Hope, and trust, and Love

  • Life

"People are really romantic about the beginnings of things. Fresh start, clean slate, a world of possibility. But no matter what new adventure you're embarking on, you're still you. You bring you into every new beginning in your life. So how different can it possibly be?"

Thursday, December 29, 2011

It's always darkest before the dawn...

quote love: "yes, this diagnosis is unspeakably cruel, and living with it will be a daily struggle, but as long as the good days outnumber the bad you have to live those days"

I came across this pair of videos today, and felt like I needed to share. Watch them first, then I'll explain: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tmlTHfVaU9o&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a4LSEXsvRAI&feature=related
I opened this link expecting to find another secret's video. I was assuming it would be good, but I wasn't expecting I would cry. I was just into part 1 when the emotion began and I could feel tears building up behind my eyes. It wasn't because this story was so heartbreaking, but because it was so relatable.

I was young, if I had to guess I would probably say I was around 9. It was another round of the flu for me, and another hospital trip. I don't remember any details about that day, but I remember one thing. I remember I was in the trauma room, and there was a team of doctors and nurses above me trying frantically to get an IV in. And then there was my dad. The nurses kept asking me questions, about my name and where I was and about my family and my dog. They asked me what breed my dog was, and I said she was a golden retriever. As soon as the words came out of my mouth I knew they were wrong, but it was like I couldn't stop them, and couldn't make find a way to speak those right words. I watched helplessly as the nurses asked my dad if I was right, and he shook his head. I was in bad shape at that point, my blood sugar crashing quickly. I remember the feeling that followed, of sinking. It was almost as if I was drifting down below the water, my senses becoming clouded. It was almost like the fog came over me, and I felt peace. I remember thinking "This is it, I'm going to die." But it was like I was wrapped in a warm blanket, I was safe and warm and at peace. And I closed my eyes, and everything faded away, and I just was, being held by these invisible arms and at peace.

Do you believe in angels, in God? Do you believe that God is real, and He is close to the brokenhearted and the sick and the lost? Do you believe that you can be held in the arms of God, and that it is the best feeling in the world, and that even admist all that fear and worry and panic, peace and comfort can be found? I do.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

My life in 10 Quotes

Your faith can’t be based on what God does, but who God is

Success is not final, failure is not fatal, it is the courage to continue that counts

You know those moments when you totally don't wanna cry, but... you're not quite sure what else to do?

My life was a sea of conflicting emotions, but the one thing kept me going was our bond... our connection. It made me feel like I wasn't alone, like i was part of something special

Are you upset little friend? Have you been lying awake worrying? Well, dont worry...I'm here. The flood waters will recede...The famine will end...The sun will shine tomorrow...and I will always be here to take care of you

What the heart once owned, it shall never lose

It's always darkest before the dawn

I am hoping with a fragile hope

Life is messy and full of heartbreaking tradgedies that I never see coming until they envelop me, but somehow love keeps me moving through all of that

I love you

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Here's a Christmas post for you introverts!

http://sojourner-ephraim.blogspot.com/2011/12/driving-miss-daisy-ahem-paigie.html

Most of you who are reading this blog probably know that I love sharing posts that made a difference in my life, or connected with me in some way. Here's the post I want to share with you today, on this snow-less Christmas morn. It was written by my best friend's mom, about my best friend and it brought a smile to my face. I hope it will do the same with yours. So Merry Christmas, to my introverted friends who will read this today, and to my extroverted friends who are soaking up the activity and will read this later on, after Christmas has passed. (Can you guess which one I am???)
I am so thankful for each and every one of you. Wishing you a Merry Christmas, and sending my love from this place barren of snow (Aka New Bothwell Manitoba)
:)

Friday, December 23, 2011

Homesick

We made it to Manitoba for Christmas today. The ground here is covered in even less snow then we have back at home, if that's even possible! The ride up here was laced with memories. Every resturant we stopped at on the missions trip, the hotel we stayed at, certain signs we laughed at while playing the alphabet game, even something as simple as a suitcase brings back a flood of memories. On the trip up even the smallest things would make me smile because I would remember, and those memories made me so happy. I knew there would be a certain degree of remembering, but I never expected as many memories as I got. It's also bittersweet, knowing that even though I am surrounded by these wonderful memories, I won't get to walk that same hallway or sleep in the same room at Grace Point or work with those beautiful kids again or hang out with my amazing team. I miss them like crazy (Wierd, eh, cause I just saw them less then a week ago!) They're my team, my 'family' and seeing them feels like coming home.


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Tree of Sophie

I started editing my novel. I find myself wishing I was the kind of person like my main character is. That sounds sort of funny to write, because I created this character, but I wish that inside me lay the same strength, the same passion, and the same beauty that I so clearly see in my main character, Sophie. Maybe some of you have figured out by now that Sophie's story is mine, or the seed planted for this story stemmed from my own experiences. I wrote this story as I was in a place of brokenness, and of hurt, and of wondering and grieving and questioning. Now, as I edit, I am also in a place of wondering, a place of questioning. It makes me wish I was as strong as my Sophie girl. It also makes me think I should take my own advice. I wish I could share with all of you every word, every sentance, every paragraph, of this novel that has inspired me, spoken to me and connected with me, but if I did that I would be posting the majority of my novel. But here's a little bit of what I'm talking about:




I wonder if I am so urgently holding on to any thread of control that comes my way that I am forgetting to give it all to the One who gives, and takes away.
I think I’m scared to offer it all up, the life of this precious one whom I love so abundantly, my very own life, to the One who controls it all, because what if He says no? What if the results I have been so desperately waiting for come out as the results I fear the most? What if God chooses to not give me what I want, but instead give me what fits into His plan for me? I know His plan for me is good, but I wonder if I can take anymore of this excruciating pain. I wonder what would happen if God decided to say no, to take my own life.
I tell myself over and over again that I would trust Him, that no matter what He said, my answer would always be yes. But would it be? If it came down to it, would I blindly follow, even after experiencing the rejection of my plans and desires?
The question running through my mind is am I able, and willing, to lay down all these battles at the feet of the One who ultimately holds it all, at the feet of the One who has the power to give, and to take away.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Swing set Secrets

"I wish all problems could still be solvedd with a swingset."
We were small, with blonde hair flying out behind us. We furiously pumped our little legs, the burgandy red seats under us. Summer tangled itself in my hair, the wind caressing my skin. Up, down, up down. The pattern continued as we soared higher and higher. It was there, being held by the wind, that I was safe. No problems could get me, no monsters could catch me. When I was planted on the swing, the sun on my face, with my best friend by my side, there I was safe. Nothing mattered anymore, not when I swung under a canopy of blue skies. I wish all problems were that easy to solve. I wish that by taking a running leap and lifting myself up off the ground, I could leave my problems to fall to the ground with the dust my heels kicked up, just like when I was younger.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Softly Singing on a Monday



  • Today started out crazy. That probably wasn't a good sign of what was to come. My mom woke me up at 8:30 (P.S days when someone wakes me up aren't usually good days. I am not a morning person.) telling me she was taking my brother (Jaxon) to the hospital. He had a super high fever and was hallucinating. So she took Jaxon to the hospital, and I got up and decided to make my sister, the birthday girl's, favorite breakfast. My dad came home in the afternoon after spending the morning between the hospital and work and took me to a different hospital for bloodwork. As much as I love those lab ladies, I could go without their vampire-ish blood taking ways. 2 pokes and one bandaid later we were on our way back home. My dad took my sister to her friend's house so she could have a semi-fun birthday. In trying to be positive, here's some things that were good about this crazy Monday.


  • I got 100% on my math assignment. That excited me so much! I am very proud of myself, and very very happy.


  • I was eating a bagle for a snack, and the way the light hit the bagle it looked like I was eating a little glitter circle. Not a big thing, but it made me smile. I like the thought of eating glitter circles.


  • quotes, and music, and friends. These 3 things make up a good day. And today, I had plenty of all 3. But I can never have too much ;)


  • Hope. Because there is always, always hope


Some days there won't be a song in your heart. Sing anyway

Friday, December 16, 2011

Scars

The other day, someone was talking about a little girl she knows who has a chronic illness. This person went on, and then turned to me and said "But it's worse then yours, you're fairly normal." My heart ached. Having to worry constantly about hypoglycemia or whatever, is that normal? Or my extreme diet restrictions? Or, or, I know, what about the tube hooked up to me, the one that forces food into the hole in my stomach? Or my scars, are those normal? You're right, though, I do 'look' fairly normal to the average Joe. But I am sick, I am scarred, and I am scared, and I am handling far too much for a girl of only 15. I may look fine, but I'm not, I'm sick, and looking normal doesn't change the scars that have formed on the inside. I'm still chronically ill, still sick and still scared and still scarred. When I got home that night, and finally got around to picking up paperdoll (The wonderful pink present by an equally wonderful Natalie Lloyd) the day's chapter was on scars. I loved it, identified with it. And then I came to the last page, the last sentance. It was underlined, with a black swirly heart beside it. Tears filled my eyes. The sentance? "Suddenly, they were beautiful." My scars... beautiful. My long, winding scars on the inside, and the small ones on the outside...beautiful. Why, and how did my scars suddenly become beautiful? Jesus kept His scars for me. In His new, perfect body after He was raised back to life, He still bore his scars. It's not my scars that define me, but His. So I'll let the comments made by people who don't, and can't, understand slide off. I wear these scars, and they are a symbol of bravery, of courage and of all these fights I've fought, and won. I'll wear my scars, because it's not my scars that define me, but His.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Pink Paper'd Presents

I got a package today. It's one of the best kinds, the big ones in cardboard boxes with pink wrapping paper. Like I said, the best kind. I was in the middle of writing a Christmas letter to slide in with the Christmas present I had just finished wrapping. Suddenly, there was a knock on the door, and my mom came in, the package in one hand, a birthday card in the other. I put aside my letter and tore into this best-kind-of-package, carefully peeling away the tape and pulling the gift, wrapped in pink paper, out. It was a book, Paperdoll by Natalie Lloyd, sporting a hot pink cover. Very girly and fun! I turned it over in my hands, running my fingers over the smooth cover. Out fell a small, white envelope. I opened it, and inside was the tiniest cutest pink button. I smiled to myself and flipped through the pages, finding a bookmark hidden within them. Inside the book, in swirly penmanship, I found it autographed.
Here's what it says: " For Alisha - because you are courageous. and because you keep looking for the good and finding ways to encourage other people. You are an inspiration and a wonder. Thank you for being so wonderfully and uniquely you! I know the plans God has for you will be amazing. Shine... Natalie."
I think this wonderful gift came at just the right time. It was a burst of encouragement, of hope, as we walk through these days of living life without our friend Spencer.
So I challenge you, whatever storms you're walking through in your life, whether it be the journey of grief, depression, or simple day to day challenges, to look for the hope, that little bit of encouragement. And that hope may or may not come wrapped in pink paper!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Breathe Easy Part 2 ~ An Angel earns His wings

He was truely a hero, in the bravest sense of the word. It's not because of the way he looks, but because of what he's done. He fought a long hard fight against cystic fybrosis. He handled each daily trial with courage and strength. Even admist his own sufferings he still found time to encourage others. Everytime I 'saw' him he was always happy, always making others laugh. He was a great guy, and an amazing friend. I was blessed with knowing this special special guy.


My good friend Spencer, an amazing husband, son, brother and friend, earned his angel wings today at around 3:30pm. He passed away peacefully. He fought a hard battle with CF and even though Cystic Fybrosis took his life he didn't lose the battle. He fought, and showed CF that even though it took away his health it could never take away the love he had, the hope that was always within him or the faith that he carried.

Breathe Easy, Spence. Know that you are loved and missed and forever in our hearts.


Please keep his wife, Nikki, and the rest of his family in your prayers as they arrange the funeral for Spencer, and for his family and friends as we all walk through this time of losing this guy who was very special and loved by all of us.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Christmas Daze

Christmas shopping is complete thanks to a trip into town with my mentor. I get the tiniest little smile on my face when I look into my secret place brimming with gifts waiting to be wrapped and set under the tree. Despite the rushed buisiness a trip into town brought to my day it was exactly what I needed.
My doctors appointment for Tuesday has been rescheduled till the new year, which brings both relief and dread. Relief because I don't have to go yet, and dread because now my mind will be dancing with possibilities because I won't know and I'll have to wait. Every time I walk into a hospital I get nervous, even if I know I'm not there for me. Every time I sleep in a hotel in Edmonton I get that wierd nervous tingly feeling, even if I know I'm not there to go see the doctor. Maybe it's just a natural reaction, but walking through those hospital doors brings on another round of fear, another whispered chorus of what it's.

I found this jewel of an article today, written by my friend's mama, and I think it conveys, sort of, how I feel about my mentor Paula. Wanna read it? Check it out: http://sojourner-ephraim.blogspot.com/2011/12/no-room.html

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Stories Ending...

Like I said... so much going on.
My Auntie Wendy (2nd cousin? No idea what the technical term is.) died this morning from cancer. Is it bad that the one thing I can remember about her the most is that she made really good pies? In my defense, she did make super good pies, but is it bad that that is the one thing that stands out to me? I didn't know her that well. I didn't see her often, didn't see her really at all other then once a year family gatherings. I remember her laugh always sounded really light and airy to me. Other then that, I don't have a lot of memories.
My friend Spencer isn't doing well either. I got the news today via his wife that they are saying he won't make it until Christmas. This Christmas would have been his and his wife's first christmas as a couple. Maybe it's selfish of me but I'm not ready to lose Spencer. I'm not ready to lose this guy who kind of adopted this role as my big brother. I'm not ready to lose the guy who believed in me, who truely wanted me to live. It's hard to believe I won't get to talk to him again, won't get to see his goofy smile again, won't get to watch the way he lights up when he talks about his beautiful bride. It's hard to believe that there won't be 'just one more time' that I'll get to talk to him. It's hard to wrap my head around the fact that he's losing his battle with CF. He was such a great person, always giving and making everyone else laugh.
Spence, I love you, and I was honored to have known you. You are such an amazing person, and if I can be half the person that you are I would be happy. You always handled your illness with such strength and fought every battle handed to you with dignity and strength. Thank you, for everything. You did good, buddy. Love you!

"In our time together, you claimed a special place in my heart, one I'll carry with me forever and that no one can ever replace"

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Breathe Easy

So much has been going on in my life over these past few days... past few weeks... past month.

My mind has been full and words, when they do come, are incoherent.


I went for bloodwork today, and in exactly 1 week I will be walking into the Stollery Childrens Hospital again. Have I mentioned before how much I am tired of that place? The staff and people there are amazing, but I would prefer it if I didn't have to see them. :) It feels like my doctors appointments have been piggy-backing each other, and I'm so tired. I would just like to stay at home, to breathe, to feel better.


One of the things that has been heavy on my heart lately is my friend Spencer (The guy in the picture.) Spencer has cystic fybrosis and is awaiting a lung transplant. Nobody knows if that transplant is ever going to come. He isn't doing well. Please pray for Spencer, and for his beautiful wife Nikki. They are both such strong amazing people, and I know they would appreciate your prayers as they walk through this journey.


There's more going on in my mind right now, but I'm going to end with that.

Hang in there, Spencer. We love you and are praying for you. Breathe Easy!



Monday, December 5, 2011

The Miracles...

Last week's ministry team was one of those great ones. Not just because I was lovingly convincted on something I needed to be convicted on, but because of something my youth pastor said.
We were talking about the obedience in Jesus's life. We're memorizing the passage Phillipians 2:1-18. We just finished up verse 8, and were discussing this portion. This is the section where it talks about your attitude being the same as Jesus, who was human and became obedient. This is where my youth pastor asked a question. He asked us what is the bigger miracle, in our own opinion, Jesus's birth, or His death? The question struck me then, but now, as Christmas posts are starting to appear on the In Real Life (Nancy Rue's) blog I've been pondering that question a little bit more.
What is the bigger miracle here? Is it that Jesus, who was holy and perfect and the very Son of God came down to earth, a place so filled with sin, as a baby? Or is it that Jesus, this very same perfect Son of God, died a sinner's death on a cross?
I don't know if I can pick which one was more miraculous, more incredible. The fact that Jesus would leave His throne in heaven and come down as a baby, at the most dependent stage of human life, to a world where everything was so sinful when he was so perfect, that is incredible. And the fact that He came to this world, and then died a sinner's death on a cross when he was perfect because He loved ME, that is equally incredible.
I think both are miraculous, incredible things. I can't pick the bigger miracle here, when both are so wonderful.
I can't comprehend why the Son of God would want to come down to this world where everything is so sinful, and then still die the worst kind of death FOR ME! I don't understand, but I am so grateful that He did.
Christmas is a time where we celebrate the birth of Jesus. Remember the miracle it was that He came, the incredible thing it was that he came to this sinful world as the most dependent kind of creature, and then died a sinners death. Remember those miracles, because I think that, too, is what Christmas is all about, the miracles.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

In which I incoherently discuss...

Listening to: The Living Proof by Mary J Blige
Quote obsession: Love doesn't break when I drop it.
Love keeps reaching,and threading,and bending,and anchoring,and connecting me to the people I love.


My mind is full, and racing. I've tried for days to get all my thoughts down in some coherent way. So excuse me if this post is a little all over the place kind of random.

*I watched this documentary online today. I've never really been that into documentaries (Ok, confession this is the first one I've ever sat through because I find them so boring.) I found this one on the GSDLife website. It's almost an hour long, but if you have time maybe check it out, it's really interesting. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYG0ZuTv5rs&feature=related

* On Thursday(ish) I was out trimming hooves with my cousin. Due to our crazy Alberta weather it was crazy windy, like shake the house and rock your bed when you're trying to sleep windy. So my cousin and I were up there, and I was holding the mammoth horse while she was trimming his mammoth sized feet. The wind was causing the tarp covering the bales to flap wildly in the wind, which was scaring mammoth horse (also named Buddy.) He kept dancing around, trying to get away from the awful scariness which was the flapping tarp. He was big, and with every move he made we had to try and find a way to move with him without getting stepped on. Also, his constant moving made it really hard to trim his hooves. Finally on the third foot we got him to stand still. His eyes still darted around nervously but he was standing still. I came up next to him and kept whispering to him. "It's ok, there's nothing to be scared of, I'm right here, you're not alone." It was after we got back inside that I realized that the way I was with Buddy is probably the way God is with me. I'm here, and it's scary. I keep moving and dancing around, trying to avoid being in this position of being dependent, of having no control. And there's God, holding me, His being right up next to mine, whispering in my ear, "It's ok, I'm right here, there's nothing to be scared of, you're not alone."

*There is little, I realized, that can't be solved with a home spa. There is little that can't be tackled with purple toe nail polish and some girl talk. There is little that can't be reasoned with as I sit there with my mentor. She's mine, my mentor, and I feel the smallest bit of pride when I say that. She's mine, and for that I am grateful. She's honest and real and she believes in me.

* This is my new song love: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jRbsTJnK5ZA
I heard it on Private Practice: The Intervention a couple of weeks ago, downloaded it not that long after and have been listening to it almost daily since then. I just love this song. :)

* Here are a couple of blog posts I'm loving too. Maybe you want to check them out, if you are like me and spend hours on the internet on a Saturday. (Just kidding! But if you have some extra time to waste on the internet, like I'm sure lots of people do (at least I hope I'm not the only one) you should check out some of these posts.)


* I could also tell you that I haven't really edited my NaNo novel yet, but I do have a little idea spinning around in my head for a sequel. I suppose I should finish up this novel first, though. My (amazing) friend has agreed to make a cover for my novel! I feel the teeniest bit lost without a novel to pour myself in to.


I suppose I've bored everyone enough for now. I apologize if this made no sense and I just wasted 5 minutes of your day with my incoherent rambling.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

I am Hungry...

Because.....pain.....for a believer....is God's stamp of love on your heart.
Pain is God saying...."Child. I am crazy about you."

I read a blog post yesterday, and it ignited in me something beautiful. Pain, it says, does something to me that nothing else can do. It pulls me away from myself and pushes me to Jesus.
And it's true. It is in my pain, admist my brokenness, that I find myself crawling to the only One who can help me. It is in my pain that I see how much I truely need Jesus, and that He is the only hope I have.
Pain is not at all a place where I want to be, but it is in my desperation that I find Jesus.
I read once about chasing after Jesus with desperation. The analogy it used was this:
Imagine you haven't eaten for days. You are ravenously hungry. One day a truck comes to the village where you are and it's filled with food. You aren't going to stand at the back of the line, holding out your bowl and say "If it's not too much of a bother, could I please have some food?" You're going to charge that truck. You are going to climb over and under and do everything you can possibly do to make sure you get some food.
Why is it only in my pain that I see how truely hungry I am? Why is it only when I am in the middle of pain that I recognize my hunger and charge that truck? Why, when everything is going just fine, do I not see my need?
I want my attitude to be that of the one who is charging the truck. I want to be the one doing everything in my power to get the nourishment my body, and soul, craves. Jesus, the bread of life. I am hungry, and I don't want to be the one who stands by and watches while my hunger rages on. I want to be the one who charges the truck, the one who chases after the nourishment that is found in Jesus.

If you want to check out that blog post I was talking about, you can find it here: http://beautyinweakness.blogspot.com/2011/11/barren-one.html

Monday, November 28, 2011

Inertia

"You think you're going to die. And then you think maybe you can beat it, maybe you'll be the miracle. And then this - good news - and you don't know what to do."
I heard this quote while watching Grey's Anatomy last night (Season 6 was one of my birthday presesnts!) and I think it totally fits with how I feel.
I thought I was going to die. In your mind, you automatically go to that place, the place where it's always the worst case. As much as I tried to keep myself from going there, it didn't work. In my mind, I was fearing the worst, and in my mind I thought it was possible that I would die.
And then there's that what-if. What if it isn't something awful? What if I can beat whatever this is? What if...
And then it happens, the best case scenerio, the best news that you are probably going to get. And I don't know what to do. I don't know how to react to this, how to understand. I don't know what to do.
Everything has changed, everything has shifted. The road I was walking on has become a different road, full of twists and turns and bumps, new adjustments I have to make. It's all changed.
In Science today we learned about inertia.
Inertia is the tendancy to resist change.
In school we were talking about it in regards to physics, but I can't help but think it applies to me too.
I've been given this diagnosis, which is about as good as it is going to get. I'm going to stay on my meds and we're going to keep an eye on it. I was bracing myself for something bad, and now that it's the best case scenerio, I don't know what to do.
Everything has changed, and it's all different now, and it's not at all what I thought it was going to be... and I don't know what to do.
I guess it's ok to grieve. It's ok to walk around in this not knowing state for a while. It's ok to be afraid, knowing that things could change in an instant, and that there will be pain and difficulties in my future. It's ok for me to not know what to do. What I thought was going to happen, what I braced myself for, it's not happening, and that's a good thing, but everything I was preparing myself for has changed, and everything I was used to before has changed to, stretching and shifting to accomodate this new diagnosis.
It's ok to not know, but I can't be stuck in this inertia, in this place where I am unwilling to accomodate change, and to grow.
So I don't know, and for now that's ok. Everything I thought I had has changed, and it's ok to grieve over the loss of what I had. But I need to make changes, to adjust. I can't stay here forever, I need to let this cause me to grow. Soon, I think, everything will be a little easier. Hopefully it will be easier to understand, and to keep my footing as my world shifts around me.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Cause when you're 15...

I'm officially 15. Is that as crazy to everybody else as it is to me?

I woke up this morning nervous, like I was waiting for something to happen. It was wierd.
I went to church this morning, and then after church I went out for lunch with my amazing group of friends (Beth, Carissa, Tyson, Jaydon, Jenna, Nick, Mitch and Annika!) Seriously, SO much fun.
We got home and barely had time to breathe before my family arrived for a party!
My auntie made me some sugar free cake (And yes, it was really good.) and we ran out of candles so I blew out some tea lights that were set on top of my cake!
The plan is to wrap up this wonderful birthday by watching some Grey's Anatomy.
All in all, this was a great birthday. I spent it with the people I love the most, and that makes it amazing. Possibly the best birthday to date.
Thanks to all my amazing friends and family who spent the day celebrating with me. So thankful to have such great people in my life.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pb-K2tXWK4w&ob=av2n

Friday, November 25, 2011

Today I got to collect...


My prize. Yeah, I know, it's pretty nice.
I'm reading through the rough copy now, editing and finding those little things that need to be fixed.
So far I've added a couple hundred words, and deleated some too but added enough that my word count has gained more then it has lost.
Since I am a NaNo Winner, the NaNoWriMo organization is publishing 5 free copies for me through Create Space. After that, I don't know what I'll do with it. Maybe publish it, since I'm sure many people are waiting to read it.
I feel sort of shy about publishing it, though. For the month of November it's been my project, my secret, my baby. I emailed a copy to my best friend today, and I'll see what she thinks. Maybe her opinion will help me decide what to do with this 51116 word baby of mine.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Have I read it yet?

The possibly surprising answer to this question is no. No, I have not read my novel yet. I've read bits and pieces, editing a little here and there (Over 51000 words now.) But I haven't read the whole thing.
Has anybody else read it? No. My best friend has read the first 3ish pages, but the story has changed so much since those first days.
Cai is asking to read it once it's finished, and I promised she can, and she will.
For now, though, I'm not ready. Tomorrow is the day where the word count valadation can start and the winners can start being announced. Tomorrow I feel like it won't just be my novel anymore.
But for now, it's still my novel. It's my secret... and I like it that way.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

This last bit

The novel is complete. The 50,000 word goal has been reached. I'm just shy of 51000 words, but I'm sure my word count is bound to go up and down a bit as I get into the editing stage.
Now to read it...

Monday, November 21, 2011

47683

I'm tired... of writing.
I'm almost done, with the story in it's final stages, with only a small 2317 words left.
But I'm tired. My brain is turning to mush inside my head.
But I need to finish strong.
This story is turning out to be better then I ever imagined it would be. It's turning out to be more honest and real then I ever thought it would be in the begining.
I don't know what I'll do with if, if it will ever turn into something I'll be proud to share, or if it does if I'll ever have the nerve to let people read it... but with the end goal in sight I need to finish strong.
I think I can, I think I can, I think I can...

Sunday, November 20, 2011

41356 ~ Moving Forward

Monday, October 11, 2010
I didn’t give Claire the letter today, and I felt like I don’t need to. I was thinking today, about stories, and about moving on.
I’ve been told to move on, to try and live a normal life despite the disease which haunts me always, but I realized that I don’t have to, move on that is.
I am forever changed, by the genetic condition which has resided in my body since birth, and by the Esophagitis, the ulcers, that took up residence in my esophagus. I don’t need to move on, or get past this.
I can’t move on, because these conditions have changed me forever. I have become stronger, braver, a fighter, but I have also experienced pain in a way most others have not. I can’t try to live normally again because something has changed, something that keeps me from being the person I once was.
When I was younger, I could handle the Glycogen Storage Disease. I was a kid, I didn’t know any better. But as I grew, I began to realize that not everyone was like this, and that I was different. Not everyone took trips to the hospital a few times a year to see specialists. Not everyone spent Valentine’s Day and thanksgiving and Easter in the hospital. Not everyone had narrowly escaped death… by the time they were 5. When I realized the truth of my reality, the pain cut into me like a knife. After my coma, for the first time I wondered if maybe I was too damaged by this sickness. Over time, though, it was easier to keep going, and for the deep wound that the sickness had cut into me to begin to scar over.
When I was diagnosed again, this year, the pain came again. There was another wound, another cut, another earth shaking reality that I now had to deal with, and find a way to cope with and survive with. But when it came to dealing with this new wound, I felt like I was, and am, more prepared, more ready to face the shifting of the ground and the acceptance of a new reality.
I can never live normally; never move past this, because it is forever a part of me, sewn into me. There’s no moving past, only moving forward. There’s no living normally, only finding a new normal. There are scars, but they are like the delicate lined pattern on a butterfly’s wings, unattractive until you get close enough to see the beauty that is hidden there.
There is weakness, but it is held by God’s strength. There is grief, but it is sustained by the everlasting hope, the stars that shine even on those blackest nights. There is no moving on, only moving forward. So I will let those scars bring forth something beautiful, and like the delicate butterfly, I will fly towards the sun.

Friday, November 18, 2011

37373 ~ Fictionalizing friends

In this process of writing this novel, I've been realizing that some of the people in Sophie's life are modeled after some of the people in mine. Sophie's parents are modeled after mine, as are her grandparents. Her close group of friends are modeled after mine (actually, if they read the book a couple of them might recognize some of our stories in there.) I've taken bits and pieces of the people that I love best, and woven them into these characters, who I'm also growing to love. So thank you family and friends, for lending bits and pieces of yourself to this novel, even though you have no idea yet :)
Here's a bit of what's been happening over in my novel:

I used to think of myself like one of those old wind-ups toys who popped a spring or a teddy bear whose stitching came loose and the nose is rubbed off. I am placed on the shelf in the back of the closet, something no one wants because it isn’t perfect. But once you are loved, you can’t be broken to anyone but yourself. Broken isn’t how you’re made, but a label you put on yourself. Once you are loved the only one who can call you broken is yourself. Other people, when they love you, they don’t see the brokenness that you think you are, or the pain that towers inside you for always. They see the person, the heart. Then, when they see that, the only person who can say you’re broken is yourself.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

32000 ~ Here's the Diagnosis...

They remind you of the things you know you know. They love you through the times when you honestly don't know. They're my friends, the family I chose for myself. They are the people who claim me, the good and the bad. Nothing totally feels real until I run it by them, not new diagnosises or changes. When I tell them, it's finally like it's real, it's happening, and I'll be ok. No matter how bad it is, I'll get through it because I have them to lean on. Thanks Ministry team, for being the best friends I could ask for. You've loved me through the tough times and reminded me of those things I know that I know but tend to forget when obstacles rise up in front of me.
With that said, it's time I share my new diagnosis with the world, after disclosing it to my team tonight and having it all sink in, and gaining the strength to face it.
I have been diagnosed with esophagitis (The big fancy medical name for it.) Breaking it down it is basically chronic inflamation and ulcers of the esophogus. It won't ever fully go away. I could tell you all the statistics I found (Been googling non-stop since I got the diagnosis) but I'll spare you all that medical talk. Know that it could have been much worse, but what it ended up being is still not good. It almost feels like to me as if we are treading on thin ice.
I know I should be grateful that it only is what it is. But my world has shifted, I have lost my footing, and I’m kind of busy trying to adjust to this new way of life right now to be thankful for what it only is.
Thanks all for your prayers and support over this last little while. I appreciate it.


Quote in italics is from the book I'm writing...

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

30005~ Broken

I've reached 30,000 words! Writing this novel, it seems, it my place to escape. It's the place I go to when everything gets to be to much, and I'm finding out some very interesting things about myself, about life, about love. I'll just keep pushing on, keep writing this story that nested in my heart and pleaded for me to write it.

"I used to think of myself like one of those old wind-ups toys who popped a spring or a teddy bear whose stitching came loose and the nose is rubbed off. I am placed on the shelf in the back of the closet, something no one wants because it isn’t perfect. But once you are loved, you can’t be broken to anyone but yourself. Broken isn’t how you’re made, but a label you put on yourself. Once you are loved the only one who can call you broken is yourself."

Monday, November 14, 2011

28056 ~ Pro Life Forum

For NaNoWriMo this year, I've been involved in the forums. It's a great way to get support in my writing journey, and I've met a few really great other young Christian writers.
One of the forums I've become involved in this year is a Pro-Life forum. Since the theme of my book has to do with Pro-life, I was hoping to get a new perspective and just some ideas on where to go with my novel.
Our conversation is on abortion. The main question we've been on was "If abortion murder?" But we've expanded on to when the baby becomes an actual person and the mother's choice.
It's been a tough forum. I've been listening to every side, weighing in and offering my opinion in a non-judgemental sort of way. It's hard, to honestly believe something with your whole heart, and have other people against you, and to offer your opinion and beliefs in a non-judgemental way.
Why is the baby considered more of a human at 20 weeks then it was at 19? Why is a baby not considered a human, despite the beating heart and brain waves and hands and feet, just because it can't live apart from it's mother?
Why, because the baby hasn't yet reached a certain stage, is it not considered a human? Wouldn't that be like killing a newborn because it can't yet walk or talk?
Weighing in on this debate has been hard, but I won't let my voice go unheard. I won't let them say "She did nothing."
I won't stand here and let the innocent be killed and not do anything.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

25165~ Half Way

I'm at the halfway point of my story. 25165 words, 51 pages.
It's coming along, slowly but surely. Some bits have been harder to write then others. Some days the words flow easily and some days it's more of a struggle to get out the words that rest inside my heart, begging to be told.
I haven't been posting that many pieces with my surgery and medical updates, but it's coming along. It makes me proud. Maybe I'll find a snippet to share on Monday.
Until then I'll just keep... on... writing

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Sorrows Divided on a Wednesday

Tonight I had my first ministry team since my surgery.
Have I mentioned lately how much I love those guys?
They are the best support team I could ask for, the best listeners, the best people at cheering me up, just the best group of friends.
They may not understand everything I'm going through, but they love me, no matter what. They are there behind me, loving me through it, cheering me on, letting me borrow their strength when I need it.
There's an old quote that says "Let it be that a joy shared is a joy multiplied and a sorrow shared is a sorrow divided"
It is definatly that way with my group of friends. Our joys are shared and multiplied, and our sorrows are divided.
It makes me thankful, thankful for this group of friends who have chosen to take my sorrows and divide it among themselves, that have chosen to bear this burden with me, and love me through it, letting me borrow their strength when I need it most.
I'm thankful, for sorrows divided on a Wednesday.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Finally Home

I'm home! I was released from the hospital last night, but stayed over at a hotel in case there were any issues or whatever. We drove home this morning.
I'm exhausted, a little sore and in some pain.
The arm where they put my IV in is kind of blown up and hard (Not so swollen anymore, but hard) but should hopefully go back to normal soon.
My stomach is still pretty sore, both from the air they pumped into me during the procedures and from not being on the meds anymore. Who knew after only being off them for 2 days the pain I had before would come back?
We should get the results of the biopsies on Monday, which should tell us what's wrong.
Anyway, I am so glad to finally be home, and hope I'll start feeling better soon.

Thanks everyone for all your prayers. And thank-you thank-you thank-you to Jaydon, Tyler, Jenna, Carissa, Beth and Cairo for sending me great letters to read while I was in the hospital. I couldn't have gotten through this without you guys, you're the best!

Monday, November 7, 2011

There's No Place Like Home...

Here we are, just hanging out in the hospital, waiting, again. Here's what's been going on...
Yesterday we got admitted around 12:00, got my IV started (1st try!) and went downstairs for a bit to a memorial service for children who died at the Stollery. Around 5:00 that night, they started the prep for my procedures today. Of course, I always have to do things the hard way so the prep didn't kick in at all until 6 or so this morning, when they gave me some more. Giving me more then was a bad idea though, because then they couldn't do the surgery, so now we're waiting until after lunch when my stomach will be fully empty for them to take me in. It's been really hard on me, just not knowing and having to wait. I'm exhausted and just want to be done and go home. So there were lots of tears last night and this morning. The only thing that makes this whole thing worth while are the amazing letters my friends sent me to read in the hospital. I've read 4 currently, from Jaydon, Tyler, Carissa and Jenna, and cried reading almost every one of them. How blessed am I to have such amazing friends?
So for now we're just waiting. Looks like we'll be spending another night in Edmonton, though, with my surgery time being pushed back.
Like Dorothy said "There's no place like home" and right now home is where I want to be.
Also, my friend's dad is also having surgery back in GP today. Those 2 guys are so amazing, going through that and still finding it in them to pray for me. So today, I'm also lifting them, their dad and their entire family up in prayer. Like I said, it's great to have such amazing friends...

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Love You Through It

Seems like the days flew by so quickly from that day when I walked out of the hospital with a surgery day. That date would be Monday.
Today we're leaving for Edmonton, Sunday is awful awful prep day and Monday would be surgery day. (Procedure? Surgery?)
It's not totally real yet, and I don't think it will be until I get there and they get the IV in and everything kind of starts.

Even as I walk through the Valley of the Shadow of death, I will fear no Evil for you are with me... (Psalms 23:4)

My Grace is sufficient for you, my power is made perfect in weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6iyU4S7yHFo

Check out this video. It's become one of my favorites over these past few days. It was made for Breast Cancer Awareness Month, but I really love the chorus and I think it applies to me to. I am so thankful for my amazing support system and the people who love me no matter what, my friends and family. They are all wonderful, and I can't imagine my life without them.
I love you guys!

"They are my people. People keep you going. People are better than...no people "

Friday, November 4, 2011

8136 ~ Worth the Chance

Hey you,
You, the ones who thought I would be better off dead because my designer genes don’t fit with the world’s definition of normal. You, who thought that since my life would be different, it wasn’t worth living. You, who thought this world would be better off without me and my disease, by saving me from the pain that goes along with my life, you would have spared me from making a difference in the life of that one, and that one, and that one, and that one.
If you’d have killed me out of mercy, you’d never have had the chance to find out who I’d become. Maybe I’d find the cure for cancer or AIDS. Maybe I’d find a way to stop world hunger. Maybe I’d be the one to save the life of your mother or father, husband or wife, son or daughter or brother or sister. Maybe I’d change the world, or maybe I’d just change one life.
But then again, if you got your way, you’d never know. Because you didn’t think I was worth the chance.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

4981 ~ The Body of Christ

With eyes closed and heads bowed, these people began to surround me in prayer. With strong steady voices, they asked God to give me peace, pleaded with Him to guide the hands of the doctors and to give them wisdom. They begged God to give me strength, and to help me feel His love on these dark, stormy nights.
Surrounded by His body, I felt as though I was being embraced by God. It was almost as if He was telling me He hasn’t left me, even now, and He never will. He gave me people, He gave me love, and, in a way, He gave me a small bit of Himself.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

3185 ~ Monsters Under the Bed

Here's a little snippet from what I have so far... Enjoy!

Monday, February 11, 2010
Today I had another ‘session’ with Claire. I was surprised at the joy that filled my tiny heart when I stumbled back into the Lilac room. Claire was waiting for me, donned in another bohemian dress that flowed down around her ankles. Her hair was pulled up in a messy bun at the base of her neck with a few stray tendrils dangling around her face.
I flopped down on the couch, rearranging the pillows around myself.
“How are things?” Claire asked, resting her head in her hand,
I proceeded to tell her about Kate and J.T and their upcoming arrival. Claire made appropriate noises, oohing over the happy parts and ahing as I presented the questions that had come to mind.
After we had investigated every nook and cranny of this issue, the tables turned over to the piece I had written last week.
With only the slightest tremble in my voice, I began to read for Claire what I had written. By the time I finished, there were tears in Claire’s eyes.
“It’s ok to be scared of the dark,” She told me.
I remember when I was little, how I used to be scared of the monsters under my bed that appeared in the cover of night. I would beg my dad to come into my room and check under the bed. He would assure me time and time again that there was nothing there before I would finally drift off to sleep, the covers pulled up under my little chin.
Now, I am realizing, there are still monsters under the bed. They might be different monsters, no longer the same ones that lurked in my room as a child. They are the monsters of fear, the unknown, doubt and regret.
They’re not so easy to spot as the ones that hid under my bed once upon a time. These ones lurk in the dark corners of my soul, ready to pounce whenever the opportunity arises.
I have learned that in those long night hours, when sleep won’t come and you’re forced to lie there and think with nothing to distract you or to cause your mind to drift away, that’s when the monsters come out to play.
After all these years, I realized, I’m still scared of the dark. And getting rid of them isn’t as simple as Daddy coming in with the flash light.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

1781

Today was my first day of NaNoWriMo. That's my word count, and it's not even noon yet.
Part of me feels accomplished. After slogging my way through the first few pages, the words came easier. I know this is only a small piece of what I hope to accomplish in this month of November, but I can't help but feel happy. This journey is begining, and although the road ahead will be long, I have taken that first step.

Did I tell you what my story is about?
It's the journal of a teenage survivor of chronic illness.

Monday, October 31, 2011

October brings... November!

Also known as NaNoWriMo month! Only a few more hours until the real work begins. I've already been doing things I never would have done if it hadn't been for this NaNo novel. Like... researching things I never would have cared about before, like IVF and Down Syndrome. I've been trying to figure out how I'm gonna write when I'm in the hospital for surgery (8 days from today... Scary!) or how in the world I'll get all those words down in November.
So here we go, almost ready to dive into the waters of NaNoWriMo.
I'll try to keep everyone updated on... well, everything
So here we go...

Sunday, October 30, 2011

DtP

Today, another weekend of DtP came to a close. It was a weekend filled with laughter and tears, of great food and great friends.
On Friday night I was tired. I didn't want to pick myself up and go hang out with 400+ other youth. But I went anyway. I was already dreading the usual Friday Night lows (a time on Friday nights where my blood sugar drops. happens every year, or did.) Anyway, we got into the session and the band began playing. They played this one song and it was amazing. In that moment I kind of threw my hands up and was like "Ok God, I'm obviously here for a reason. Show me what that is." The first thing the speaker said when he got on stage was that nobody was here on accident. NOBODY was here on accident. That night was the first Friday Night at Dtp in my 4 years of going that I didn't have the usual Friday night lows. And when I got into bed, exhausted, at around 1 in the morning, I was already worrying about the small amount of sleep I would get. Then it was kind of like God said to me "Don't you believe I am going to take care of you? Do you believe I am going to give you everything you need?" And when I woke up the next morning, after only being half awake through breakfast, when we got to the session and it started, I was wide awake. Saturday morning's talk was on hardships. When the band sang one song, Our God, and the line "Our God is healer," came up on the powerpoint, I was hit. Did I truely believe that God was a healer, MY healer? Did I truely believe that no matter what challenges this next week brings, that He had the power to heal me, or not to? And that no matter what He chose, that He was still good? After lunch I went to a worship seminar. It was just a really cool time to be together with other people who were just there to worship God. We went to the mall for supper, and then there was another ralley, and then the comedian and the concert (Bob Smiley and Jeff Deyo and Band.) This morning was another early morning, but I was totally refreshed and energized. After another great worship time, the speaker came up to speak one last time. He talked about faith, and what that means. It's like saying My only hope is you, my only hope is you, my only hope is you and being in a place of complete dependence on God, because without Him, you would be toast.
So yeah, I went into this weekend tired and just wanting to stay at home and relax. But coming out of it, I realized I was taught so much more then I ever thought I would. It was an amazing weekend, and I am so glad I went, even if now I have to catch up on some sleep.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

DtP

Today starts another DtP Weekend. We have them once a year here, a youth confrence. It is loud, and there is lots of people, and little sleep. Every single year I tell myself there is no way I am doing this next year. I am too tired, there is too many people and it is too loud. But every single year, I go. But every single year, when I look back on the last year and decide if I will go again, I don't remember the lack of sleep or the crowds of people or the noise. I remember meeting God, and experiencing Him through the worship, and the speakers, and the fellowship with my youth group. So here's to another sleepless weekend.
God, meet us in this place.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Monday, October 24, 2011

At Half Mast...

For me, there is few things harder then seeing my friends hurting and being able to do nothing.

On Saturday morning, 4 guys from the high school in GP were killed in a car crash.

2 of the guys in my close friend group, as well as a couple of other people I know, knew the guys that were killed that day.

Like I said, there are few things harder for me then seeing my friends hurting and being able to do nothing.

It's hard to know they are hurting, and to see the pain in their eyes, and not be able to do anything to stop it.

It makes me think, about how nobody ever knows where they might end up, or when their life will end. I'm sure when those guys woke up they weren't thinking they were going to die. But it happened.

For some reason this hits close to home. Maybe because the guys were only 15 and 16, barely older then me. Maybe because I've seen the hurt in the eyes of the ones left behind. I didn't know them, but I know people who did. I've heard stories of how great these guys were. They were real, and they laughed and they loved.

I hate being helpless to stop the hurt that the ones I love are feeling. I hate not knowing what to say, or what to do, or how to be there, or even if I should be.

It's almost as if our entire town is grieving. On the way home from pottery today, I noticed the flags were at half mast.

So my heart hurts. My heart hurts because these teenagers died so young. My heart hurts because I've looked into the eyes of the ones who knew them, the ones left behind. My heart hurts because 2 of those people were a few of the people that I love the most, and I hate to see them hurting.

I hate seeing my friends hurting and not being able to do something to fix it.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

I love...

* Friends, who hang out with you at Mcdonalds until it closes.
* Friends who will drive you home at quarter to 12, and still have great conversations with you in the car.
* Being packed together at Missions night in the market. Like literally squished together so that you were up against one person with no where to move because there were people trapping you in on every side. Good thing I wasn't claustraphobic. But yeah, that was a lot of fun.
* Sushi, and some sort of Indian Dessert thing and some sort of African berry juice thing. Anyway, lots of yummy cultural food going on.

So yep, I'm kinda tired this morning. But these nights, the ones I spend with my friends doing who knows what, those are the best ones. And I wouldn't trade them for the world.

Friday, October 21, 2011

This is gonna be great!

This afternoon, I had my first meeting with my mentor.

I loved the Bible study that we're gonna do (That we created ourselves!)

I love that we ate pickles right out of the jar (so yummy!!!)

I love that I can see myself in her, which is pretty great

I love that God showed me, and even though in the moment I was like "What?" Because I didn't know her that well, that I listened, because I can already tell it's going to be great.

Yep, today was good. I can't wait for next week, and all the weeks that follow as we dive into this wonderful adventure of working with our horses, and faith.

Can I just say I love her? Cause I do, and I think this study is going to be great!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

This crazy thing I call my life...

I am a student. I am a daughter, a sister, a granddaughter, a niece, a cousin and a friend.

My favorite color changes with my mood. But I love grey and pink and purple and orange and yellow, no matter what.

My favorite foods are chicken and pasta and bagels. I love them all and have the feeling that I could eat them every day and not get sick of them, for a while anyway.

I love my family. Sometimes they annoy me, and I think I don't need them, but no matter how old I get I will always need them.

I love my friends. They are amazing and wonderful and I blessed to have them in my life. I don't think they have any idea how amazing they are. I need them too.

I love walks and fall weather. I love walking into a library because it feels like magic. I love walking into a store with a whole bunch of soaps, because it smells wonderful.

I like sparkles (Not as much wearing them as looking at them.) and anything that can be classified as cute or cozy. I like hugs.

I like watching movies, and reading, and hanging out with my friends because they always make me laugh. I also love music, and quotes, and random quizzes because it makes me feel like I'm being interviewed and that makes me feel importent.

I have a wierd habit of chewing on my tongue when we walk down the laundry soap aisle of the grocery store.

I love eating at Subway, even though I get the same thing every time. But why mess with a good thing, right?

I love writing, and one day I want to be published, to be known. I also have a wierd connection to my characters and that makes me a little crazy at times.

I love being happy, and having that wierd giddy feeling when something amazingly happy happens and you can no longer hold in the joy so you just start laughing and dancing around your room. But as much as I love being happy, I think it's ok to just be.

I love Jesus, most of all.

I have a strange Thursday night obsession with Grey's Anatomy. When I am watching Grey's, don't talk to me. seriously! I am in my happy place and when you interrupt that, I will probably get mad at you.

I hate wearing socks, no matter how cold it is outside. The only time I wear socks is with my running shoes. And when I wear heels, it makes me feel like Addison Montgomery, though I don't know why.

I'm a hopeful romantic. I love getting flowers. I love getting letters and cards, through email or snail mail, but there's something exciting about going to the mailbox and getting a letter.

I hate being alone in the dark, in the quiet, because then I realize just how alone I am, and I hate that.

Usually when I come back from a doctors appointment and it didn't go the way I wanted, I will get needy. I will want to be by myself, but when no one is there I wish someone was. And I won't know what to say, but I need someone to give me a hug. But no one knows that because I don't say anything.

I hate beginings, and endings, but I love that time in the middle. I hate the unknown, but sometimes knowing scares me even more. And sometimes, I kind of hate this crazy thing I call my life. But I know that no matter what, I am stronger then I was before, and that by walking down this road I'll learn things I never would have otherwise. And that, I can definatly appreciate.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Here we go...

"Maybe Happiness didn't have to be about the big, sweeping circumstances. Maybe it was about stringing together a bunch of small pleasures. Wearing slippers and watching the Miss Universe contest. Eating a brownie with vanilla ice cream. Getting to level 7 and knowing there were still 20 levels to go. Maybe happiness was just a matter of the life upticks, the traffic signal the said "Walk" the second you got there~ and the downticks ~ the itchy tag at the back of your collar ~ That happened to every person in the course of a day. Maybe everybody had the same allotted measure of happiness within each day. Maybe it didn't matter if you were a world-famous heartthrob or a painful geek. maybe it didn't matter if you were possibily dying. Maybe you just got through it. Maybe that was all you could ask for. "
Taken from the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants

I signed up for NaNoWriMo today. Everybody knows I like to write, and I do. I've had this story that's been hiding away in the back of my mind now. I've figured out plots and characters and even written entire scenes in my head. But 50,000 words in one month! I don't know if I can do that... But I'm gonna try anyway. I'm going to write (While still keeping up with my responsibilities.) and I may possibly go a little crazy. But I'm going to try, and we'll see where I end up at the end of November. Cheer me on, cause here I go...

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Saturday, October 15, 2011

How can I?

How can I focus on the difficult when I have...
This guy, who loved the most precious little girl with me

This girl, who is amazing and a whole bunch of kinds of wonderful


This guy, who always brings me back to the truth


This girl, who makes me proud to be her friend



This guy, who can make me crack up at his 'randomness' This girl, who can brighten my day with a single comment



This guy, who has the best quotes

How, I would like to know, did I get such an amazing group of friends?














Friday, October 14, 2011

Lost...

FYI, I am a terrible artist! Sorry if you have no idea what this picture is! It's supposed to be a girl with an IV in a hospital hallway, but it's kind of hard to tell that from the picture. It looks better in real life, I promise!

The picture is staring at me... I feel a strange connection to the girl within. Then I realize, we are both lost. Lost in the darkness of night, the cover of blackness. Lost as a person, now only a patient of the medical world. Lost in the unknown, alone and helpless. We are lost. That girl in the painting, she will never move. She's stuck in the darkness of her surroundings. But for me, I have to believe there is still hope. I have to believe that soon the dark will turn to day and I will no longer be lost, but found. I have to believe, I must have hope. Or remain lost in the dark forever.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Written with a purple pen...

God, Keep me thankful
Show me how to live, every whispered breath uttering thanks. Help me see your purpose for me. I know You have plans for this, for me. I know I am here for a reason. I know I am not forgotten. I know this indescribable pain, this heart ache, is a part of your plan. You know the sound of my breaking heart. You hold together my broken body. It is too much for me. My fingers ache from clinging to this thread of hope. My soul cries out for mercy. My tear filled voice begs you to tell me why I am here. But, oh God, I feel You holding me, carrying me through the dark valleys. I feel Your strength penetrating my being when I am weak and ready to quit. I feel you here. So with my tear stained face, I will give thanks. In my hopelessness, I will be grateful. In my heartache, I will trust. For even in my brokenness, I am fearfully and wonderfully made. For even in the darkest nights, you have a plan. I will praise you through this night, for I know joy will come in the morning.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

And yet...

I guess it's time to let everyone know what's going on.
As you all know, I went to see the very funny GI doctor on Thursday. Here's the scoop:
On November 6, I go in for prep. I am on IV's and will be taking meds that will make me very sick.
On November 7, I go in for a gastroscopy, a colonoscopy and a bunch of biopsies. (Thank goodness for Anesthesia.)
Before all of this takes place, I will need to get a bunch of more tests done at the lab here.
I've been in shut down mode for a few days now. I don't understand why something that I wanted for so long has the power to scare me to death. I don't understand why it hurts like it does. I don't understand... and I hate that. I hate not knowing, I hate the fear that lurks around in the shadows of the unknown.
And yet... I will blindly follow into the land of the unknown. I will trust in a God who knows the plans He has for me, and that those plans are good. I believe that He will never leave me alone as I walk through the valley of the Shadow of death.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

a teen's perspective...

Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”
And I said, “Here am I. Send me!” Isaiah 6:8

http://calgary40dfl.blogspot.com/2011/10/day-14-teens-perspective.html

Sunday, October 9, 2011

A person's a person no matter how small...

For a while now, the whole pro-life issue has been one on my mind. Maybe it's because we're in the middle of the 40 day's for life, a pro-life movement consisting of prayer, a peaceful vigil and community out reach. Maybe it's because my best friend's mama, who I look up to and admire, is involved in this (She is blogging for the 40 day's for life, Calgary. Find her page here http://www.calgary40dfl.blogspot.com/)
Either way, Pro-life has been on my mind a lot lately. Usually when I hear the term pro-life, it's regarding abortion. It's the choice of choosing life for this unborn child. And when it is said like that, I always thought that "Yes, I am pro-life." But recently, I've come to wonder if maybe pro-life is more then just saying no when it comes to abortion. Maybe pro-life is the value, the preciousness of human life. Maybe pro-life is realizing that this life is a gift. Maybe it's standing up for those who can't stand up for themselves, fighting for those that are unable to fight for themselves. I think pro-life is more then just abortion, though when most people consider pro-life that is the first thing that comes to mind, I know it did for me. But maybe pro-life is more then just protecting the unborn babies of this country. Maybe it's being just that, pro-life. Maybe it's supporting the preciousness of life, no matter how small the life is.
Recently, I've been taking time for prayer. I know that sounds silly, but it's true. It's not much, just a few minutes a couple times a week, to go before God in prayer. Besides asking Him to soften my heart, I've been asking for something else to, praying for something else. I've been praying for life. I've been praying for all those girls and all those women who walk into the abortion clinic, thinking there is no other way. I've been praying for that family in the hospital whose child, sibling, self, whatever, is being forced to live life with a chronic illness, when some others think it would be kinder to Euthanize. I've been praying for hope to be shone into the darkest corners, and for love to find a way to peer through the clouds.. I've been praying, simply for life. Because every life is valuable. Every life is precious. And because the term pro-life means so much more then simply standing against abortion.
So yeah, I'm pro-life

"It all seemed so wrong. I said to myself, 'Somebody ought to do something about this!" Then I realized that I am somebody"

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

I need you

So I'll be honest. I need you. I need you to hold me, because I have this crazy notion that once you hold me, everything will be right again, or I'll at least have the strength to face it. I need you to make me believe in myself again. I need you to be that person I could talk to about anything, about everything, because I miss that person the most. I need you to be my wall, to hold my hand and help me weather the storm, to let me lean into your strength. I need you.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

But If Not...

None of this is my plan, God
My plan begins with a semi-healthy teenage girl, whose body is free and is not held captive by this mysterious intruder
But if not...
If I am forced to undergo this new challenge, then I would like to have answers sooner rather then later
But if not...
If I am forced to wait, for some reason which I can't see, please lead me to trust worthy doctors
But if not...
If I am shown to doctors who don't understand my condition, then please keep me from any unnessessary testing
But if not...
If I am forced to undergo tests that are not needed, please save me from any extra pain
But if not...
If the road that lays ahead is filled with pain and hardship, then please save my life
But if not...
If I am to leave this life so young, for a reason which I don't know yet, let my enemy know I will worship no other

Daniel 3:18

Monday, October 3, 2011

What I'm Lovin'


  • I love wearing high heels, because they make me feel like Addison Montgomery

  • I love anything that smells good.

  • I discovered I love pottery. I'm not a real artsy person in that sense of the word. My favorite form of art is the kind I make when I put a pen to paper. But I went to my first pottery class today and had a blast. I made a cup. I got to throw lumps of clay really hard. it was fun :)

  • I love my friends, probably more then they even know. I love spending Saturday nights/ Sunday Mornings with them. I love watching movies and wasting hours in Superstore. So yeah, I love my friends.

  • I love when I get good grades on a test I barely studied for.

  • I love wasting hours in the most magical place on earth, the library. I love smelling the books (Don't judge me!) and buying a scone and a water and sitting and watching people.

  • I love afternoon naps. Even though during these wonderful events one of the biggest lies I tell myself arises. "I'm not going to fall asleep. I'll just lay here, and close my eyes, and rest my head on this pillow." Yeah right, we all know I am going to fall asleep

  • I love the comfort and peace that I have as I walk into these next few days, into the dark unknown.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Australian Invasion...

Quite recently, we have had Australians join our SBW (Starbright world) crew. Recently it's just been us north americans, so it was quite a switch. I was on as one by one, they slowly entered our chatroom doors. We, due to over exuberant hosts taking the lead, were anxiously waiting to welcome these new comers. It was soon declared that the chat room was chaos. We had Australians trying to get used to the new system (Since our two systems are merging.) Like ship wreck victims, the Aussies began to search for others from their old sight. We would get the random message of "Where is so and so... I can't find so and so... WHERE IS SO AND SO!!!!" And, of course, we had to get used to their new way of things too. Over the hour or so, so many of them entered. I think we were oficially had an Australian invasion. It was pure madness. Their SBW was/is called live wire, and all their chat hosts have different names, and our time zones were all mixed up. Anyway, later that night, once I had clicked the off button on my computer and shut down all the madness, I was sitting with my journal, contemplating on what I had just experienced. The whole time, I had been... unsettled with this whole thing. They were here, in my space, taking over. They were new and scary. But then I realized, what if it's not about me. I'm here, in my space, surrounded by 2 of *my hosts* with *my* people. Here they are, on a new website, not in their place at all, with none of their hosts or friends. So what if I have to get out of my comfort zone a little? So what if I have to adjust my speech, or my ever present sarcasm, so they don't take offense. So what if I have to step outside of my little bubble a little bit, to make them feel welcome in this place that's so new and strange to them. This is just as new and overwhelming to them as it is to me. So maybe I can. Maybe I'll step out of my comfort bubble and reach out. Maybe I'll go out of my way to make them feel welcome. Maybe I'll make a couple of those minor changes, that really wouldn't affect me, to make them feel welcome.


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Just a Little Something to (Hopefully) Brighten Your Day...

As you probably know, Wednesdays are busy days for me. I have coffee break in the morning, and then school. Well today, we decided to go volunteer at the local SPCA. Now I love the SPCA. I love going and walking the dogs and playing with the cute little kitties, and today was no exception. The only problem with this venture is I become WAY to attatched and suddenly want to take home every stinkin animal in that shelter (Or somethin' like that.)
Anyway, like I said, we went to the SPCA today. We had already walked one dog, a highly energetic level 2er (They are given levels so volunteers know which ones are the easy walkers (1) and the really really hard ones (5). So after walking this bundle of energy, we decided to walk another dog. We found this one level 1er who looked adorable. So my mom took Jaxon to the bathroom, leaving me to rangle up this dog. Usually, it's not that hard. You step in the cage, clip on the leash and go.
Well, first step, I got into the cage. I was so worried about letting the dog out behind me that I closed the door, not even thinking. This dog was jumping all over me from the time I got into the cage. So I wrestled him so I could clip the leash onto his collar, and then discovered that "Houston, we have a problem." In my efforts to avoid letting the dog out, I had locked myself in the cage. Now I know these things are dog proof, but I figured if I could get my fingers through one of the tiny holes, I could let myself out. Why oh why did I have to be given such big fingers? I could reach through the holes, and touch the lock, but I couldn't get my finger around to grasp it enough to pull up. (Note, all through-out this adventure, I have a dog, jumping on my back.) The other dogs in the cages in the same room were barking at me like mad. I decided I would just wait for my mom to come back and let me out. Then I thought what if someone sees me, a human child, locked in a dog cage? They're going to think I'm stupid. I probably was at this point, but I tried again. This time I found a hole slightly bigger then the rest, shoved my finger through and opened the lock. Hurray, one problem solved. The dog was still a jumpy little rascal. We left the room and started out to the main hall. There's SO many doors in that place, and I wasn't sure which door led to the main door. So, we wandered the halls. up and down, and up this one again, and through that one. We were still searching for the enterance, when I realized we had another problem. I was basically tugging this dog along behind me, and some how, some way, he slipped OUT OF HIS COLLAR! Not the leash, but the collar. So now I was chasing a rambunctious collarless dog around the SPCA. I tried calling him, no luck. I tried tricking him, still no luck. Finally, I cornered him, wrapped my legs around his body to hold him still, and re-attatched the collar. It fit snug, and I was left to wonder how he could slide out of his collar. By this point, I was thinking that this dog was definatly not a level 1er. He kept jumping, and we went in search of the door. We found my mom and Jaxon coming in. I was shaking and freaking out. We decided this dog was definatly not a level 1er and took it back to his cage.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

You've got a Friend in Me

She's my person
She's the calm to my loud
She's the loving arms behind my neediness
She's the one who always helps me sort through my problems, and never needs me to help me sort through hers, making me feel like the loser friend :)
She's my best friend, my person. She's amazing and wonderful and fabulous. She doesn't get annoyed when I'm needy to often, and doesn't freak out when I can't find the words to explain my heart ache. She's my person...
Happy 15th Birthday, Cai!

"You were always there when I needed you, never left my side, always there to lean on, and dry the tears I cried. I could always talk to you, you never seemed to mind. Your voice so honest and gentle, your words so honest and kind. I thought I'd never meet someone as special as you are, you're my best friend in the whole world, you're my shooting star"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nj5cW_wEjIw

Friday, September 23, 2011

Keep Calm... and watch Grey's Anatomy

"You just have to know. And when you don't know? No one can fault you for it. You do what you can, when you can, while you can. When you can't, you can't."


Obsessions, addictions, we all have them to some degree. They are the thing that makes you feel better on a bad day. They are were you can lose yourself. I know I have mine. And today was one of those days when you just *need* to forget, to lose yourself in something and forget. So I did. In my lime green scrub pants, I sat on the couch, and watched episode after episode of Grey's Anatomy. I lost myself in Alex and Izzie and George and Callie's crazy love triangle. (If it has 4 sides, does that make it a square? a love square?) I lost myself in a guy cutting off his own foot and a boy trick or treating for ears. Hour after hour after hour, I sat there. And I did forget. I did forget what had me so upset from that morning. I did forget everything, and I was watching Grey's Anatomy, and I was happy. I know this sounds crazy, and it probably is. But sometimes it's nice to forget. Sometimes it's nice to not worry about everything that's going on that you can't fix, and take some time out... for you. Even if that means watching grey's in scrub pants, for hours.



When skys are grey, Grey's Anatomy is my only medication.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Lost Brain Cells, and My Strange Addiction

Today was a day of lost brain cells. I've been doing school since 9:00 this morning. I studied for a science test, I drew a climatograph more times then a person 'ought to draw a climatograph in their life. I did a math problem over, and over, and over, and over and still did not end up with the right answer. My brain cells have died, causing me to be extra jumpy and scream at toasters. And yes, I do mean scream at toasters. I had a bagel in earlier, and I was waiting for it to pop, and when it did it scared me so bad I screamed and jumped a good foot off my chair.


Today was a trying day for me. But at least this school day has come to a close and I have one thing to look forward to.


In case you didn't know... GREY'S ANATOMY STARTS TONIGHT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am happy, because my strange addiction will finally get what it's been craving... Mcdreamy. (And Karev, can't forget Karev.)


This was written post dead brain cells. All the brain cells may not have been replenished at this point in time. Anything I write or do can not be held against me. :)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Quotes on a Tuesday...

"It's good to be scared. It means you still have something to lose"

"Everyone is always asking me what’s wrong, but I don’t even think it makes any sense, it’s just... my heart hurts"

"It's like dealing with a tornado. Once you are close enough to see it coming, there's nothing to do but weather the storm"

"Snuggle in God's arms. When you are hurting, when you feel lonely, left out. Let Him cradle you, comfort you, reassure you of His all-sufficient power and love."

"It's like a storm. That cuts a path. It breaks your will. It feels like that. You think you’re lost. But you’re not lost, on your own. You’re not alone. I will stand by you. I will help you through. When you've done all you can do. And you can't cope. I will dry your eyes. I will fight your fight. I will hold you tight. And I won't let go..."

"It makes me sad. And then it makes me laugh, because sadness at any length is terrifying"

"We're friends, real friends. And that means, no matter how long it takes, when you finally do decide to look back, I’ll still be here"

"Are you upset little friend? Have you been lying awake worrying? Well, dont worry...I'm here. The flood waters will recede...The famine will end...The sun will shine tomorrow...and I will always be here to take care of you"

Monday, September 19, 2011

How Have You Seen God?

Almost every day that I was on the missions trip, and now that I have joined Ministry Team, my youth pastor always asks us one question, "How have you seen God today?"


On the Missions trip, I got into the habit of daily writing down how I saw God that day. Sometimes it would be something simple, something scrawled in my messy handwriting as I tried to document the day's events before I fell asleep. Sometimes I was more creative, using great detail to describe what had happened. No matter how I wrote it, I always wrote how I saw God.


That question has been coming into my head lately more often then not. And more often then not, I have a list of answers. My relationship with my Heavenly Father has become more tender as of lately. I'm having those realizations moments, the moment when I realize something I either didn't know before, or knew but didn't get. I'm hearing His voice as He whispers into my soul. I'm taking His hand and blindly following Him into the great unknown, trusting that even if I don't know, He does. Maybe it took me being helpless, for God to show me that He was able. I've had 2 prayers over the last week or so that seem to be repeated. Over and over I whisper these words, begging God to answer. One of those prayers, the one I have already seen being answered is this... "Break my heart for what breaks yours." It was not that long after I had found out about Sadie. I had all these feelings stuffed inside, of helplessness. I was choosing the role of a victim of childhood disease, one I knew how to play well, rather then the role of helping my hurting friend. I didn't want to be this person anymore, the person who knows what it's like to have your childhood stolen from you, this person who knows the grim reality of fighting a childhood disease. So I prayed, asking God to break my heart... for what breaks His. and He did. He softened my heart and showed me that it was ok to not know. I was in uncharted waters, I'd never been in this position before, watching the sickness go on without me. He showed me that it's breaking His heart to see little Sadie suffer, and that it also is breaking His heart to see me suffer. And I think that this heart break I'm feeling is only a fraction of what God must feel, when He see's us hurting. I think if I were fully able to experience the kind of pain God feels when we are suffering, I would be floored, paralyzed with grief. I don't think I could comprehend the kind of pain God feels, when He sees His children hurting.


The second prayer I prayed this week was this "God, hold what I can't." I prayed, and still am praying, this prayer at a time of helplessness. I asked God to hold together what I couldn't. I asked Him to hold Sadie, and her family. I asked Him to hold my best friend. I asked Him to hold me, to hold me as I walk through the Valley of the Shadow of Death. Because I am helpless in this position, but God is able.


So Now I ask you this question that my youth pastor asks me, "How have you seen God today?"

Is He there, rejoicing with You? Is His Peace evident in these rough waters? Or is it simply the quiet recognition that Yes, even now, He is here?