Tag: pets


the indomitable human heart


It’s been crazy around here since my last post.  It took a lot out of me to write about losing my sweet puppy-boy, Max.  But the point of that post was that God can heal any disease, any injury, even a broken heart.

I also told you that I needed to find another little fuzzy to fill the void left by Max’s death.  Tommy and I had been looking at all sorts of rescue and adoption sites for Shih-Tzu mixes and at our local shelters.  We found a possible one in Georgia and we would have gone through with it had it worked out.  As it was, the adoption people have not yet contacted us about our application and God orchestrated a different plan in the meantime.

A local friend of ours messaged me one night a few days after my post was published.  She said she had a little Shih-Tzu mix puppy that she needed to rehome.  This friend has seven children, the five youngest she is still homeschooling!  She said she’d thought the kids would have more time to spend with the puppy, but their busy schedules had not afforded it much time.  She loved the pup but could see it was suffering from neglect (emotionally, that is) when it had to beg for attention from the kids.  As you can imagine, all those children, plus homeschooling, each child with extra-curricular activities and a husband with his own business is a lot for a mom and it came to the point she realized she needed to find a new home for their little pup.

She had already asked a few other friends since she didn’t want to put it in a rescue situation, so she hesitantly messaged me that night to see if Tommy and I might possibly consider taking her.

We went to pick her up the next morning. (ha!) It just seemed like another situation God had worked out in advance.  She is young enough, like we wanted and now we would know about her background instead of unsure of how she was treated.  We know she was well-loved and taken care of.

And now we have little Silvey, an 18-month old Shi-poo (Shih-Tzu/Poodle mix).  The past week has been an adventure to be sure, but Silvey (short for Silverbells Piddlepie  -haha!) settled in amazingly well.  We even took her to Knoxville with us the day after we brought her home and she did excellent.

She’s so different from Max, it made me tear up a bit as we drove down the highway, thinking about how he used to cuddle up in my lap but Silvey wanted to sit independently on the center console.  The next couple of days, though, she became more cuddly as she adjusted to feeling at home with us.  She gets along great with Samson, our chocolate lab, and seems each day to feel more and more at ease.

 

I have not posted anything on Facebook or Instagram about having her to avoid having my friend’s younger kids see it and feel sad about having to part with her, but soon, I’ll share some photos on there.  Right now, she is needing to visit the groomer and so I will wait until she’s got a new hairdo to post pix.

For now, I’m trying desperately to get a video up here for you guys of Silvey fussing at the bad doggie in the mirror of our bedroom.  She’s been mad at that dog all day long and the weirdest thing is, she has seen that mirror before today.  Goofball!  Ha ha ha!

In other news, today is Tommy’s fifty-first birthday.  I’m gonna attempt to make a gluten-free chocolate cake for him.  With all his allergies, it’s so hard to find things he can eat.  If we find a restaurant where he can eat, there are never any wheat-free desserts on the menu, so I’m fixing this cake for him.  I sure hope it comes out right!

Our Ohio kids (ha!) are coming down tomorrow evening to be here for Tommy’s birthday and we have a girls’ breakfast planned for Saturday morning since the boys are squeezing in a bachelor-party/camping-trip thing.  I’m looking forward to that!

Beyond that, life is pretty normal.  I’m still struggling with low energy despite the fact that I’m taking B-12 injections at home each week.  We haven’t got to ride bikes this week due to rain and a severely neglected yard (we had to rake the entire thing the grass was so tall and thick!).  Maybe we will get to go this weekend, though.  I start missing it so much if we don’t get to go.

I need to get back to editing what I have written of my book.  Editor Elaine has informed me that she is almost ready to send chapter two to me with suggestions and a rewrite along with her notes on my rewrite of chapter one!  I can’t believe how productive it makes me feel to have her notes to work with!  I am SO thankful she is helping me like this!

I’m off to get you a video… You’ll see why I needed this little stinker…she makes me laugh the way Max did but at an entirely different personality.

The heart is never too broken.  Our hearts are indomitable, always rebounding, when God makes the repairs.

Thanks for hanging with me!

Be blessed!
HERE YOU GO!! VIDEOS!

 


finding peace in the pieces


Ah, broken hearts. They’re the stuff great songs are made of, am I right? And if you have one, they are like the longest, most painful night of your life.

Unless you’re like, 4 days old, you’ve had a broken heart. At least once! At this point in my life, I’ve had many-a broken heart. Like they say, time usually heals them but some take more time than others.

I don’t spend a lot of my time worrying about having my heart broken from things like a death in the family or a betrayal by someone dear to me. If you know me, you know I’m not really a “worrier”. I really do try to leave it all in God’s hands and be as content as I can be with His plan and His determined outcome.

However, in the past couple of years, I have just occasionally and quite randomly found myself mulling over how I would handle it if something tragic happened to one of my children.

I don’t know why, really. Well, yeah, I do. It’s the enemy trying to steal my joy and keep me from concentrating on God and what He wants me to do. Then there are the times I fret over the fact that it worries me being some sort of forewarning. I’m telling you, I can drive myself crazy with it if I don’t stop it quickly.

I have several dear friends who have lost their children from illness or accidents. Some of them just amaze me with how they have handled it. They have a peace and a joy that I can’t quite comprehend. Others of them tend to dwell and hold their sadness close, even after a decade or more.

I’m just not sure how I would do. I want to think I could allow God to take it and I could find peace again, but somehow I can never feel confident about that. It’s like I wonder how I’d do with a test such as that. Like Job losing ALL his children in one fell swoop on top of all his bodily torments and other losses. I just marvel at how amazingly God can sustain our frail human hearts.

So anyway, the reason I am pondering all this stuff is that I had a terrible heartbreak this weekend. We lost my sweet little puppy, Max.  I am so heartbroken to lose him.  Tommy came in Saturday with a look on his face that told me it couldn’t be good news.

He knelt down beside me and said, “Honey, Maxie’s been in an accident,” and that’s all it took.  I said, “Is he gone?” and when Tommy confirmed, I just dissolved into tears.  I’ve had pets all my life.  Mostly dogs, but sometimes cats when I was little.  We’ve lost countless dogs over the years to either accident or illness and I have always been upset, but never like this.  Of course, growing up, we never had inside dogs and somehow, when they don’t live right “in amongst” you, you don’t get quite as close to them.  We had an inside dog before Max, but he was never as attentive or as “stuck” to me as Max.

We got our sweet Max, a little “Malti-Tzu” (Maltese/Shih Tzu mix) when I was at one of the most dark, depressed states of my life.  I needed him and he needed me.  We got him from a lady who had taken him even though she knew pets weren’t allowed in her apartment.  She kept him crated all day while she was at work, so over 8 hours.  He was a mess, all long and matted.  He was afraid of men because, as she told us, her boyfriend didn’t like Max and would yell at him (and who knows what else).

It took awhile, but soon he was not just my baby, but Tommy’s buddy as well.  He loved people, most people, well…after he had barked at them a bit and decided they were okay.  We have a few friends he never took to though and I’m pretty sure it was because they had sort-of loud or a different tone to their voices.  Otherwise, though, he made friends pretty quickly.  He was very protective of me which at first, I think was a behavior held over from the yelling boyfriend of his previous owner.  The first couple of times Tommy moved to hug me, Max would leap between us and like I said, the first couple of times he made a faint growl at him, but soon as I assured Max that it was okay, he stopped making any aggressive sounds.  Soon, it was done just because he was a nosy little stinker.  He would wedge his way between us with this “Whatcha’ll doin’?” look on his face.  He had a huge personality.

Max loved to play and was really a joy to watch.  He would skip and run and sling his “baby” or ball around then run to catch it.  He loved to drop his balls into containers then act like he was on Mission Impossible trying to get them back out.  He’d drop them in Tommy’s boots, the laundry basket, my purse… you name it.  It was such fun to watch him play.

Max also loved to cuddle and sleep.  Bless his heart, when I had a bad day and could barely keep my head up, he was just as game to lay in bed all day with me as he was to be up following me all over the house.  I think this is the main reason I’m so devastated over losing him.  I’ve never had a dog that loved me so good.  He just wanted to be with me, no matter what.  He was entirely too cute for my own good.

Even though he wasn’t one of those “yappy” dogs that barked all the time, the house seems so quiet without him.  I think it’s because the sound of him jumping off the couch or bed to run see who was outside or his little feet clippety-clipping behind him on the tile have become comforting sounds and I miss them terribly today.

Max had a huge sense of adventure and was, like I said, game for anything Tommy and I were up for.  He loved to travel and was the best car-riding buddy ever.  We took him with us along on more road trips than we can remember.  He loved to ride and would get so excited about a car ride, but soon as we were on the interstate, he’d be out like a light.  The interstate was like valium to him!

Max went camping with us, he’s gone to various cookouts, hikes and bon fires.  Fishing at the pond was a favorite.  He even went for a ride on the four-wheeler, but that wasn’t his favorite since we had to rig him a “seat” (aka: milk crate with harness) because he would NOT be still and let me hold him!  He wanted to jump off and chase every critter we saw.  

He even rode with Tommy on his bike once.  I’m not sure he liked it a whole lot, but he liked being with us.  He was better satisfied as long as he could see me riding behind, but if I got in front, he would have a fit to climb over Tommy’s shoulder.  We wanted to try another camping trip like this with the bikes and try him in a basket, but we never got the chance.  Max was willing to try just about anything we did as long as he could go with us.

Max was a peculiar little poot, too.  He had this thing, maybe all little dogs are this way, but if any dogs were around who were bigger than him, he HAD to make it clear that HE was the boss.  Our old chocolate lab, Samson, was a prime example and he probably

made Max worse because of his own super-gentle temperment.  Sam was always the gentleman, to a fault!  He was never the least bit aggressive unless you threatened his food.  And sometimes, he’d even share that with Max.  He never took the ball away from him, love his heart.  He always let Max get the ball.  Maybe that’s because Max would start growling and snarling like a rabid skunk if some one threatened whatever he considered his.  And of course, ALL THINGS were his.  Humans and toys alike.  And if another big dog came around, even one of our boys’ dogs (Corey has an Austrailian Shepherd and Casey has a Golden Retriever) if any of the big dogs was aggressive with the other, he would be all over them as if to say, “HEY!  Shut it down!  I’M the only one who gets to do that!”  It was really hilarious and I’d have to explain to other people that he wasn’t really being mean, it was just his way.  Bahaha.  Max definitely had a unique way of socializing.  But he still had lots of buddies.  Seriously, even the dogs couldn’t help but love him.

Max was the sweetest, craziest, noisiest little pup ever and I am really heartbroken right now.  After crying my eyes out for almost two hours solid, I’ve collected myself and can ponder why.  I don’t know why this had to happen at this point in time.  I don’t want to dwell on how it happened

other than to say it was an accident and happened right in our driveway.  Max was, as anyone who’s been here knows, a horrible one to run up to and around and under vehicles as they approached or left the house.  We tried every way we knew to break him of it, but he would not be stopped.  The only way was to forcibly hold him or just take him inside.  It never failed that I would no sooner let him out in the yard to play than someone would pull into the driveway and I’d have to go out and try to catch Max or watch with my stomach clenched as the person tried to slowly bring the car or truck closer.  Whether it was a delivery truck or someone who had been here a million times, he would go at it barking like mad and running as close to the tires as possible, so honestly, I wouldn’t blame the person responsible at all.  This person has no clue that they even ran over Max.  Another reason I don’t want to dwell on it is that I could end up getting mad or even more upset.  I know this person was distracted with trying to hurry home even though they know how Max is and have had to deal with his antics a million other times.  For whatever reason, God saw fit to let this happen and I am trying to cope.

 

 

Which brings me back to my first thoughts up there of fretting about how I’d deal with it if something awful happened to one of my boys.  I am wondering if God isn’t letting me know that this is not the worst thing ever.  He knows that I would have been in much worse shape if I was dealing with losing one of them.  Why I need to realize that now is something I don’t want to ponder long.  I think it’s become more of a thing with me ever since Corey moved to Ohio.  I felt like I was literally losing him.  I realize now that was silly since we actually talk to him and Melissa and even see them more often than we did when they lived a stone’s throw away!  The moving and now this has all taught me never to take anything or any one for granted as I am so apt to do.  

I’m so thankful that God put Max in my path (I found him on Craig’s List!) when He did because we really did need each other.  I hope he felt every bit as loved as he was.  Especially after spending part or maybe all his life feeling like he wasn’t wanted.  I loved that little fella SO good and through him and my family and others, God brought me out of the deepest pit to recover my joy.

It feels terribly lonely today though and I have cried through sorting for pictures to share with you and have realized I don’t want to feel like this.  No pup can ever replace my little Max, but I need the companionship of a silly, funny pup.  I have been busying my mind in the search for another Malti-shuh or whatever they are calling the Maltese/Shih Tzu mix.  The characteristics of both breeds are just what I need, I believe.  But it’s hard to find them except from expensive breeders, which we can’t afford or people who are no longer able to care for aged dogs, which I don’t need.  I need a younger dog that can be trained.  Corey believes we can train a dog to help alert us to low blood sugars which would be extremely helpful!  I know this breed isn’t the top recommendation for this sort of training, but right now I’m determined that I need a little one that will be a cuddly furbaby, too.  Even if they can’t be FULLY trained to alert, I know that dogs have the natural ability to sense things like that and it would still be helpful even if they don’t know proper alert actions.  My mind may change but as it stands right now, it doesn’t much matter.  We can’t afford to just purchase a pup from a breeder and besides, I’d rather not do that anyway.  I’d like to be able to get a younger dog from an owner who has discovered they can’t care for the dog or maybe has had an unexpected litter of pups.  I’d like to find one less than a year old and even a straight-Shih Tzu, Maltese or even a Yorkie would be great.  (just throwing this out there in case anyone knows somebody who knows somebody… heh)

My experience with Max tells me that for the most part, the combination of Shih Tzu and Maltese traits are just wonderful other than the drive to chase, which is high in most small dogs already.

I’m thankful for the time I had Max.  He was like medicine for my hurting heart.  I know God has another dose of good medicine out there somewhere and at the right time, he or she will cross my path.  In the meantime, I’m also thankful for my family who has been so sweet in understanding my heartache and sweet Tommy, who I know is also heartbroken but has been so strong for me the past couple days.  I am blessed and highly favored.

Go and tell your family and friends you love them and hug your pet.  Any and all of them are blessings to be treasured!  Always remember there is peace among the pieces of your broken heart if you just let God handle the reassembly.

BLESSINGS!!!


mind. blown.


First, Tommy came home Saturday night excited that a friend of his, the man’s family at least, were going to go to church with us!  I don’t really know any of them other than to wave, but knew there was a lot of addiction and just ‘life-struggle’ in the family.  They really need Jesus!  So we’ve just always tried to be lights, just living for Jesus in front of them, ya know?

It’s sad when people get so beaten down by life, the disappointments, the abandonment, the betrayal of it that they become hardened to the idea that love exists anywhere anymore.

living for jesus
Especially when you present some “ancient guy” Who’s supposed to love everybody the same and besides that…“didn’t he die already?”  sigh

So yeah, by the time we were getting ready for bed though, the mom texted Tommy through his friend’s number saying that she was “just going to take everyone to my church”, but thanks for the invitation.  I could tell it upset Tommy. He said that the reason they had come out (as Tommy was in his truck getting ready to leave — he had taken some auto stuff over there for the guy to paint) to ask about church was that the young teen boy, the mom’s son, I think, “has questions and wants to go to church.”  The son was just there for spring break, he normally lives with his dad.  I have no clue what sort of relationship there is other than that.

We knew they had never gone to church in all the years we’ve known them so I’m not sure what church she was calling ‘hers’, but then again, Tommy said they were both (the mom & dad) pretty buzzed by the time he left.  He said they’d started on the beers soon as he got there and, the best he knew, that was the regular evening routine.  I don’t know, but anyway, he figured that was part of the text and still said he would come pick them up, that they should go see what it was like at our church and we were sure they’d really like it.

There was no response after that.

We got up earlier than usual the next morning because Tommy had decided we’d go over there anyway and maybe if, by chance, they were up getting ready, they’d just go with us or if not, we could get them to go.

We were ready to get in the truck when he realized that he had forgotten to put Samson up.  Samson, (look in my photos down there to the left) is our big, cuddly, laid-back chocolate lab.  We’ve had him since he was just a few weeks old.  We learned pretty early on that he has no sense of direction after him following another dog off a couple different times and us getting a call that he was 4-5 miles away somewhere.  Bless his little heart.

So we have always kept him on an underground fence.  He’s been on it so long now that he knows exactly where the boundaries are and he will not cross.  I mean, seriously!  I tried to get him to walk down to Corey’s with me a couple weeks ago.  I took his collar off, walked across and he just sat there, quivering.  I called and I begged, but he wouldn’t budge.  I even tried to sorta push him across but he would have none of it!

Samson has a dog house inside a chain link dog run and that’s where he goes at night.  By this time, it is habit and normally, if Tommy dawdles later that Sams thinks he should, or he’s just hungry, he’ll bark and let us know he’s ready to go to bed!  Ha ha.

Tommy had worked all day Saturday in the shop with both his dad and Casey and then after taking the stuff to be painted out there and talking to his friend awhile, it was later than usual for him to come in.  He’d stopped and picked up some supper for himself and sat in the recliner to eat.  I didn’t realize he hadn’t put Sam up so when he was soon snoring loudly, I just let him sleep and went on to bed.  He seems to sleep a little better sitting up like that and can be hard to wake up, so when he’s sleeping soundly like that, I just let him sleep there.

Back to Sunday morning, we came out to leave and Tommy realized he hadn’t taken care of Sam the night before.  We called, expecting him to come running, but no Sam.  I walked around to the front porch, even though it’s unusual for him to stay out there unless it’s sunny, but nope.  Not there either.

lost pets

We only have a smidge over an acre here, so it’s not like he had a lot of other places to go.  So Tommy went out into the shop, calling Sam as he opened the office door.  No Sam in there either.  While he did that, I walked around behind the shop, which is about the only other place he could have been out of our sight.  I feared I might find him sick or injured because that’s the only reason he wouldn’t come when called, but he wasn’t there either.

Now we were completely flummoxed!  What in the world…?  Now there was only one other conclusion, but it didn’t quite add up either:  Samson had been stolen!!  We checked to make sure the fence was working: yep, it wasn’t off or alerting due to a broken wire.  All this time, we’re making all this noise in the shop, but it’s getting later and we were determined to try to get at least the young boy to go to church with us, so we reluctantly left.

As we drove away, I began a plea for Facebook friends, most of whom are great animal lovers and told them about our missing Samson.  Many of them have met Sam and love him too, because you just can’t really help but love the big galloot.  He’s such a gentle, easy-going fella and of course, he’s gorgeous too.

Samson

Samson

So people began sharing my status like crazy and posting to lost pets groups and commenting with sympathy and encouragement and prayers.

When we got to the house of Tommy’s friend, his sister-in-law was standing on the porch.  Tommy got out and talked with her.  Apparently, the mom had talked herself out of going.  And no, she wasn’t up preparing to go that her church either.  She said no one else was up so they couldn’t go.  Tommy told her we’d be back at 10:30 and we’d all go to the 11:15 service, then.  She agreed and we left.  It was about 9:15 at the time.

We drove over toward our house, on the other side of town, and started down the roads where we’d found Sam the other two times.  Nothing.  No sign of him.  As we got closer to our house, a dear friend, Shell, called me to ask what area we lived in…she was going to drive around looking for him too.  I could have cried.  What a precious thing to do!!  I told her there was no need for her to get out when she informed me she was already leaving her house!  Bless her heart!  She wasn’t about to go back, so I told  her a couple places he could have gone and off she went.

Seriously, guys?  I have some amazingly awesome friends, don’t I?  Makes me feel SO humble and thankful!  God’s blessed me so good!

We were still driving, getting closer to our house and decided we should go turn off the fence so that if Sam did somehow wander back home, he could go in without getting shocked.  None of that even seemed feasible still, but what else could we do.  We pulled up to the shop, where the control box is and Tommy informed me he was gonna use the bathroom while he was in there.  I said fine and began checking on the Facebook activity, updating people and thanking them for the shares and concern…I was absorbed in my task so when Tommy showed up with this incredulous look on his face outside the driver’s window, I had no clue what was up.

He opened the door and said, “Look!” and pointed across the yard toward Sam’s pen…and lo and behold, there was his big chocolate butt trotting around the yard as if nothing was amiss.  SERIOUSLY!?!?  “WHERE WAS HE?!” I asked in pure shock.

“In the mower room, “ Tommy said with this monotone voice, completely disparaged.  My mouth fell open then.  Let me explain, our shop is about 30 x 60 feet with two tall garage bays, then a small office with a “people door”, when you come out of the office into the shop, immediately to your left is a staircase to our storage area, another small work bay in front of you and if you walk around and under the stairs, there’s a bathroom and at the very back, two more rooms, one of which has a small garage door where we park our lawn mower.  It’s RIGHT BESIDE the bathroom.

I was just floored.  Why on earth hadn’t he barked at all??  I mean, the boogar had not made a single sound in all the time when Tommy called him from INSIDE the shop (it’ echo-y in there, people!) nor when he got a scoop of food out for him from the tote sitting right outside the mower room door…and he still hadn’t made a peep when Tommy came into the bathroom.  He just thought, even though the chance was slight that Sam would be in there, he’d just check to be sure… so when Sam jumped up and trotted over to him, tail a-waggin’, we were just baffled!

I had gotten out of the truck while Tommy was telling me all this and Sam came over just like normal.  I bent down to hug on and scold him.  I was in the process of calling Shell to tell her we’d found him.  It was a little hard to hear her well out in the wind, but she said something about “whoopin’ his butt” and next thing I knew, she had pulled in the driveway.

We laughed and talked a bit while she gave Sam another good scolding and hugs and then we all hurried off to church.

WHAT A MORNING!  I hurriedly got on Facebook to call off the search so people were commenting back and no one made too much fun of us for finding him in the stinkin’ shop.  HA HA HA!

This morning I posted this on Facebook:

  Here’s what Geannie learned this weekend:😀
1) always check all the rooms before pleading for FB help to find you dawg. 🐶💩
2) if you still can’t find him, ALWAYS plead on FB …those people rock!💪🏼👍🏼
3) Gentle persistence pays off when you are trying to engage people for Christ. 🙌🏼
4) A bunch of stuff about my brain that I didn’t know before (& am still chewing on! Thx, P Trev -> Trevor Barton
5) 2 months is probably too long to keep a kumquat in the fridge. 😖
(I made that last one up, but I betcha I’m right!) 😂

How funny!  I was so overwhelmed by the help and concern, especially from Shell.  She went above and beyond.  I just love my sweet friends!! (she’s an Emmaus friend, by the way…they totally rock!)

Okay, so back to the collecting of guests for church…

When we got back to Tommy’s friend’s house, no one was stirring that we could tell.  We were in the process of determining what we should do, go knock, go away…what? when someone opened the door and out came the sister-in-law with a car seat and behind her a cute little blonde-haired girl and the teenaged boy.  Praise God!

We had an amazing sermon!  This series is called What Lies Beneath and it’s about how if we aren’t emotionally healthy, we can’t really by spiritually healthy either.  Our lead pastor is super-blessed with the ability to apply Biblical truths to our lives today.  He went into this in-depth explanation of how our brains work… how the neurons created connections or paths each time we learn something new.
nerves-346928_1920

The more we do OR think about those things, the stronger the path becomes.  His point was that, just like how Paul says it in Romans 12:2…

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

We CAN change our lives, our thought patterns, our behaviors by changing how we think.  He phrased it “changing our minds” which, get this, is the definition of the word repent. (read down to ‘repentance’… if you look in newer dictionaries, it paints repentance as a feeling of sorrow or regret, but that’s not the original meaning!)   How amazing is it that all those centuries ago, Paul had it right.  He described the very process that our brains use to change how we live, how we act and how we think!

I was really blown away by how the Bible really does tell us that our regeneration, our renewal, our path to that ‘new self with the old self in the past’ after we’ve made Jesus the Lord of our lives really begins in our minds and WE must submit our minds to Christ!  It sounds so simple, but I really loved the way he explained how the brain works, how neutrons form paths and the more we concentrate on a task or thought or memory, the stronger that connection becomes.  So in the case of a bad thought pattern, the scripture 2 Corinthians 10:4-6 come into play:

 “4For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled.”

THIS is how we change our lives!  By changing our minds.  Literally rewiring our minds by filling them with the Word of God and detemining to bend our will to His knowing that He loves us and wants only the best for us, no matter how it looks to our human eyes.  (that’s a whole ‘nother post about faith and trust, I believe. 🙂 )

I’m going to link the sermon series here because as of right now, they don’t have yesterday’s message uploaded, but when they do, you can get to that one here also.  Besides, you oughta listen the Week 1 anyhows.  🙂

What Lies Beneath – The Creek Church – Pastor Trevor Barton

Wow.  Such an energizing thought and I don’t know a soul who didn’t need that!  Don’t fall prey to your thought patterns, to a negative mindset, to naysaying friends who don’t encourage your faith.  Break free!  Start by locking up those unbeneficial thoughts and replacing them with the truth of God’s Word!!

Blessings

G~


we made it out alive…


Obviously.

In case you are clueless, I’m talking about the trip last week to Nashville with Hubby and our baby dog, Max. This was Max’s first big trip to a fancy hotel in a big city. He did awesome when you consider he’s used to being let out into the back yard when he needs to do his “doodie”… haha. But we had to go down 10 floors in an elevator with a glass back so you could see out the entire, dizzying plummet to the lobby. There, we had to be quiet, which sometimes happened and sometimes not, walk through the lobby and the rotating door and then across the street to the awesome War Memorial park before we could do any sort of doods at all.

Honestly, it was a lot easier than I had feared. When we got into the lobby to check in, my inner dialogue went something like, “What in this WORLD were you thinking? We will NEVER survive the next four days in this place with this dog!!”

Good ol’ Maxie, though, he fooled us.

Hubbs enjoyed the conference well enough, but when we realized that the extra class he’d been signed up at attend wouldn’t be over til after 5 p.m. the last day and hotel check-out time was 11 a.m., well, I might have panicked a little.

We had done fine staying in the hotel, taking walks around the park and up and down the streets surrounding the hotel. There is great value in having a cool, secluded base camp (our room). But now we were going to essentially be homeless for at least 6 hours. It was over 80 degrees down there and you couldn’t take pets in a lot of places so I was really concerned about how we’d deal.

It wasn’t fun, but we did it. I ended up having to drive across Nashville TWICE, which was an experience in and of itself!! EGADS!! After I checked out and drove a few blocks away where we had walked the night before, I found a place to park and got Max out to scope the place out a bit. I had read online that pets were allowed in the place I wanted to get brunch, The Frothy Monkey. But when I got there, it was a totally enclosed place and I didn’t want to attempt taking him in and him getting all barky. That would have just freaked me out too much so I took him back to the truck, started it and crated him. I went back and ordered my food, ate it in a fairly leisurely manner and soon noticed that the place was becoming packed. I mean, PACKED!

I could see outside that the traffic was becoming a lot heavier too. So by the time I had finished with my food, gone to the restroom and walked back outside, I found that the street was a virtual madhouse!

That’s when the panic set in.

I had actually driven a short distance from the hotel to a park the day before. It was really crowded and there was a large area I couldn’t take Max, so when I found another park online not too far away, I had made tentative plans to drive over there. But now…I was feeling so unsure of whether I could even maneuver my way out of the parking lot, let alone make it all the way across town to a place I’d never even been before.

I was truly overcome with panic. And I’m not really an anxious person to the point of feeling it physically when I get worried, but on this day, I was a big ol’ mess. I texted the friends from my reunion group and asked them to pray for me. I texted my kids back home and asked them to pray. I felt soem peace knowing that they would indeed pray and from the encouraging messages some of them sent.

I began to feel God’s presence with me and the panic began to fade a bit. I was concerned about whether I had enough parking time left to sit there til the traffic thinned a bit. But even before my time had expired, I was feeling much better and confident enough that with Jesus’ help, I could do this.

So I took off and even though the feelings of panic rose up again a time or two, they never overtook me. Even with a couple of detours from the GPS directions because of construction, I still made it to the park without incident and boy, was I relieved!

I sat there for a bit, thanking God and recalling all the times He has delivered me in times just like this…and worse! And I kicked myself for getting into such a state in the first place.

Why do I do that? Why is my first reaction to panic and fret? I guess that’s just part of human nature, but it sure makes me angry at myself. As I sat there remembering how REAL and how EVIDENT God was to me a few years ago when I had run over my foot with our lawnmower. I had cut off a big slice of my heel and had to have a couple surgeries, a skin graft and was on crutches for months. For a T1 diabetic, that is some major risk, we tend to heal SO slowly and SO badly.. but God.

But God!!

He healed that huge wound faster and better than most of my hangnails. I kid you not. The first few days after the accident while they kept me in the hospital waiting to see a specialist and make sure I didn’t develop infection, He even healed me of the diabetes.

Yep, you read that right. I had SO many people praying for me, and I am certain most of them were just saying, “Heal Geannie, Lord.” I fully believe that because of those prayers, or maybe just because God felt like showing off, I got to a point where I didn’t need insulin at all. I actually turned off my insulin pump and disconnected it. If i didn’t, my sugars stayed dangerously low.

No, it’s not “a thing” for diabetics to do this after a trauma. It’s not normal at all. That’s just another reason I know God was behind it. Now, it was only for a few days, not a permanent healing, but perhaps that time of my body not having to deal with outside attempts to regulate my sugars jump-started the healing in my foot, maybe it did some other weird thing that promoted the quick healing. I don’t know. And you know what? I don’t HAVE to know why or what.

God knows what He’s doing.

People sometimes ask me if it was awful when I realized I needed to start back on the insulin. No. It wasn’t. I have no clue why God would heal me for that brief period of time other than to give me this testimony, to give me this reminder of the faith that I so often need. Or maybe it’s because YOU needed to hear this story for some reason.

And if that’s the only reason it happened, that’s okay with me. Through all this, and the many other times God has pulled me through something, I have learned, albeit slowly and the hard way, but finally, I have learned to trust Him with my life.

EVEN when it looks like my life might come to an end or be horrifically changed. Romans 8:28 says “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” That is SO true, but we have to trust that, to believe it’s true. No matter WHAT the “things” look like, no matter how scary they might be, we must trust that God is in control and He’s working and putting things together for a purpose and for our ultimate good.

We don’t have to understand the process, we just have to trust the Orchestrate-or.

I have always loved this saying, and honestly, I’m not sure if it’s my original or not, but I’ve never found it anywhere else or attributed to anyone else, but here it is…let it minister to you the way it has countless times for me:

I don’t have to know where we’re goin’. Jesus has the map.


crick


Not “crick” like “down by the…” Nope. I have one in my neck. Well, not really a crick. More like the muscles are so stinkin’ tight!

Now this has been going on forEVER! I normally am tight up there and along the tops of my shoulders, but it’s getting to the point where it hurts all the time, not just with certain movements.

Sheesh!

I really should go see the chiropractor, but I haven’t made an appointment. I don’t see much use in trying it right now since we are leaving for Hubby’s work conference on Sunday. I doubt I could even get in before we leave. Tow of the kiddos have been going lately and it takes them awhile to get scheduled, so I guess I’ll try to make do and call when I get back late Wednesday.

My sister came by today to leave some egg cartons. We chatted for a little while and it was good. She later called me and offered to keep Maxie-Wag for us while we’re gone. I had mentioned our trip while she was here and that we were planning to take him with us.

I told her I’d let her know and that for now, we just planned to take him. I said if something changed, I’d call her. I’m just not sure she could handle him for that long.

For one, he’s a little hyper sometimes. He likes to jump. Over, in, on and under stuff. ANY stuff. He’s like that cat meme…

So, if he can reach it or fit in it, he’s SO there. He jumps in people’s vehicles, in their laps, or their chairs if they make the mistake of vacating it. And most of the time, it’s not just to sit there calmly to be petted. Nope. He gets all up in your bizniss, right in your face like, “Hey! Look at me! Here I am! Whatcha doin’? Whatcha’ talkin’ ’bout? You should do something (let me out, feed me, find me a toy)! I won’t get out of your face til you fix this situation. You’re welcome.” He also likes to use me as a sort-of vertical trampoline. At least that’s what he acts like, coming from the other room sometimes, full speed ahead and *POUNCE*, he’ll plant all fours on me with enough force to leave a bruise just because he wants my attention. Seriously!?

I’m just afraid four days of him will be too much for her. And then she can be pretty forgetful too and I’m afraid she’d forget to put his radio collar on when she let him out, or that she’d try to grab/catch him by his front feet when he’s bouncing up to face level the way he does. Usually that means he wants you to cuddle him like a baby, but sometimes he’s just doing The Tigger. Just because he can.

I dunno. It would be nice to not have to worry about him when we are out. There’s some kind of social thing at a fancy restaurant one night, then of course, we’ll have to get food at least a time or two. We can’t leave him in the room even in the crate, so we figured we’d have to crate him in the truck, even if we leave it in the garage and walk wherever we’re going. Depending on the weather, that could mean we have to leave the thing running so he won’t get too warm. Then there’s the sorta-scary thought of having to try and keep him occupied all day while Hubby’s in his labs or whatever at the conference.

In one way I think it’d be great to have Max there to keep me occupied, but then I think, I COULD just take LOTS of long naps or watch LOTS of movies too…and I could easily do that, trust me.

*sigh* I just hope I’m not too freaked out by being in the middle of a huge city and will be able to go take him out walking some. Looks like there’s a big park about a quarter-mile away. I might attempt to make it over there. Just not sure about walking.

Not that I couldn’t, but when I think of something like that, I get nervous about what would happen if I went low or something, ya know? Argh!

And now I am in that horrible indecisive cycle where I can’t make a stinkin’ decision. Drives me crazy.

Ah well… I guess writing about it didn’t help and how pathetic is it that I had to sit down and write about whether or not to take my dog on a trip?!?!

I am certifiable!

Proverbs 16:33“The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the Lord.”


worst patient ever


So today, Hubby has been…let’s say, exploring his limits.  He thinks when a doctor tells him to take it easy, that means to just do what he always does, only slower.

Observe:

Today, our boys needed some help using a laser they were not familiar with on the job.  They brought it up to the house first thing so their dad could help them set it up and teach them how to figure the settings.   It was all very confusing and boring, but soon they felt confident with it and took off to their job.

Ever since yesterday, Hubby has been saying he was going to try driving today, wanted to go get his hair cut and price new tires for our truck at the local tire shop.  I told him he was NOT going to drive, but first thing this morning he was insisting on it again.

The boys called to asked their dad a question a couple different times, so soon as I was dressed, he said we “needed”  to go check on them.  “It won’t take long,” he assured me.

Yeah, right.

I had decided if he was going to insist on driving, we might as well take Max with us.  He loves to ride and if we plan to take him to Nashville in May, he needs all the ‘practice’ and time in the truck.  I said he loves to ride, and he does, but he’s not crazy about his tether.

This is SO not Max, but a nice doggie who would sit still and let someone take a photo. This is the tether we use.

We HAD to get the tether because Max is like a rubber ball, bouncing all over the cab, pushing buttons and knocking mirrors and rolling down windows…he’s a real mess.  But he does okay with the tether, the worst thing is that he goes around and around in the seat til he’s got it twisted up and pins himself to the seat.

Anyhow, so we get to the job site and next thing I know, Hubby is attempting to hobble down to the main area with the boys right behind him ready to catch him if he fell.  *shaking my head*

He had to do some re-figuring on the settings, and studying the plans and shooting the grade… and a bunch of other stuff.  We ended up being there for almost 3 hours.

SHEESH!!  Thankfully, somehow God made me calm and it didn’t bother me in the least to be stuck at a job site with the dog and absolutely nothing to do.  Trust me, that is completely out of character for me.  And the other great thing I’m thankful for is how good Max was!  We walked and walked, we sat in the truck and watched/barked at people, we sat nicely in the parking lot and watched intently all the goings-on with the big equipment.  He was such an awesomely good puppy!!  He was definitely glad to get home, but even more glad, it would appear, to get to sleep:

Sleepy Max--glad to be home!

Sleepy Max–so glad to be home!

So all that is great and I’m thankful that Hubby seems to be doing so well, I just hope he’s not pushing himself too hard and makes his healing take longer, ya know?

Something that happened yesterday has me upset and totally confused.  My sister called about a week ago wanting to do Easter dinner the night before Easter (I don’t know why) at her house.  I said, sure, what should I fix.  She said layer salad.  I said sure, great.  And that was that.

Both my boys’ birthdays are in April.  Precisely two weeks apart, matter of fact.  I dunno how we managed that, but I assure you it was not planned.  Anyhow, it always makes for a very hectic month what with winter coming to an end, spring blowing in and making it easier to do things outside, then Easter and their two birthdays, either of which sometimes will fall on Easter weekend.  This year, it’s my baby son.

Last I knew, his wife told me she wanted to plan a cookout for him, but she’d let me know.  It depended on when her parents could come.  (honest moment here:  that made me kinda upset, although I did NOT let on, but why did it matter when they could come for HIS birthday?  argh… obviously, I’m a little hyper-sensitive when it comes to anything to do with them, still, I found out just today and because I pressed that she’s putting off this cookout for a week and I can only assume it has to do with them and that bothers me)

ANYhow…so yesterday, I’m talking to my mom on the phone and she informs me, as if I didn’t know anything, that we were going to do Easter dinner at sis’s house, and “If you wanna come, fine and if you don’t, that’s fine too.”

Yep.  Paint a blank, wide-eyed expression on me here.  I have NO CLUE why she said that or what was up her butt when she did.  All I know is that my sister’s car was at Mom’s almost all day Sunday.  I didn’t talk to her Monday and thus, she wasn’t told about Hubby’s accident, sometime or other, she found out though, possibly from DIL2, but it doesn’t matter.  I wasn’t TRYING to keep it from her, I just didn’t want her to worry OR to hear what I did when she asked me how he was.. that accusatory tone and the questions as if he could have somehow avoided it or that he brought it on himself.

*siiigh*

I am just bewildered, as I always am when she does stuff like this.  She went on, after her “come or don’t, fine” remarks, to request that I fix a casserole.  I swear, I am so tempted to just deliver the foods and leave.  Honestly?  If I did, they would all wonder what was wrong with me.  I can just about bet you Mom would act as if something was wrong with me and either deny she said that to me or act as if I took it wrong.

Seriously!?!?!

I just don’t know.  I’m just way past sick of this crap.  I dunno if Sis was up there complaining about me all day Sunday and that’s why Mom was crappy to me or if she was just that way on her own.  I just don’t know and I’m so sick of trying to figure out this garbage.

If the opportunity presents itself, I may pull Sis aside and ask her if she had told Mom she didn’t want me there or if Mom just said that to me on her own.  I don’t know.  There has been a lot of stuff in our sermons lately about making relationships right, but I just don’t know how to fix anything with my family.  Where is the line between being who you are, being your own person and trying to be what God wants me to be and making peace with them??  Why do I need to “stuff” my own interests and personality in order to be acceptable to them?

I am at my wit’s end with them.

And… just for the record, I’m not sure the 450mg dose of Wellbutrin is going to be much more beneficial than the 300mg.  It’s just not doing anything “more”… just not worth the extra meds, ya know?  I will see the PA in a couple weeks so we’ll see what she has to say.  Hopefully it won’t be to just chew me out for upping the dose on my own!

Genesis 37:5, 10-11“Now Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers they hated him even more.

10 But when he told it to his father and to his brothers, his father rebuked him and said to him, “What is this dream that you have dreamed? Shall I and your mother and your brothers indeed come to bow ourselves to the ground before you?” 11 And his brothers were jealous of him,but his father kept the saying in mind.”