Saturday, December 31, 2011

Transplant

So as we know, my brother David and his wife Summer have had an interesting 9 months of marriage. As part of the decrease in Dave's health due to Cystic Fibrosis, they have spent their first Thanksgiving and Christmas together as a married couple in the hospital. 

Since David was missing so much work, he got laid off right after Thanksgiving and since that time, they have gotten almost $10,000 in medical bills that isn't covered by their insurance, with many more to come once the lungs come in. Luckily they have insurance but will still have lots of out of pocket charges with the medicines and supplies that he will be needing now and after the transplant, that insurance will not cover. 

We've created a Facebook page to show our love and support for David and Summer. Even if you don't know them, but you know someone in our family, please join this page to show them how much support they have. 

This group is called "Dave Needs a Lung Transplant" 

Also, Summer has set up a PayPal account so that anyone who is able to help in any small way can easily contribute. We understand that this is a difficult time for many people with the economy, but every little bit helps relieve the financial burden they feel. Thank you so much for all of the prayers and support that you have given us. 
They have led to miracles! 


Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Back to utardia

This new blog set up is throwin' off my groove. 
I don't know how to check anything and haven't had the time or energy to really look into it. 

Good news though. 
I haven't had a break down for 4 days. 
I deserve a gold star. 
AND....I slept THE WHOLE night last night. 
I didn't even use Tylenol PM!!!!
But, the end is in sight. Dave is almost done with the lung tests so he is almost officially on the list. (HOPEFULLY)
His lungs have stayed inflated for almost a whole week now!! 
His heart is freakin out a bit, but no permanent damage. 

So overall great news. 
We are going there tomorrow to help Dave and his wife move and to just be there for Dave. 
Its hard to see him suffer, but today is the first day in a long time things have really looked up and Dave has been chipper about things. 

But, I just wanted to quickly say thank you SO much for all the prayers. 
David and Summer feel them. 
My family feels them. 
and I feel them. 

Prayer works. 

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Oh, you know.

*****DISCLAIMER: I REALLY DO LOVE LIFE*****
I have never felt so comforted one moment and so alone the next.
The words from a song by Taylor Swift I think comes to mind...
"I feel alone in a crowded room..."

I have felt that way over the last couple weeks.
Lately I feel as if I am alone, caught up in my own thoughts, no matter how many people I am around.
I feel like I'm not standing up as straight because I have a burden on my shoulders.
I feel like a bipolar mess where one moment I feel peace and am truly happy and then the next I'm crying because someone asked me about how David is doing.

My boss has gotten the brunt of my emotions outside of my mom.
Bless his heart. He really is so good. And so kind.
It's really nice to have an LDS boss sometimes. This is one of those times.

There have been SO many tender mercies throughout this whole thing.
David lost his job: We have a ton of family that are so willing to take them in.
David's lung collapsed again a couple days ago: This will hopefully move him up on the transplant list.
David lives in Utah, not even an hour away from one of the best CF clinics in the nation.
David has the most amazing wife he could ever ask for.
David, and me, and our whole family have strong testimonies of the restored gospel.
And of the Living Christ.

I came home for lunch today and the only thing I could do was walk in the front door and start crying.
Two hours of sleep, and many hours of laying in bed worrying about your brother doesn't make the craziest day of work you have EVER had any easier.
And it doesn't make those crazy, uncontrollable girly emotions any easier to control.

I have thought about how it was that my family has been blessed with this trial.
Sometimes I wish I could put into words exactly how I feel, not to have a wo is me moment, but to just get it out and be able to move on.
I have found that it is very therapeutic to talk about it, but its hard too.
With my dad as stake president, I feel a little pressure to come across as happy and care free as possible. Not that they can't know that I'm struggling, but I want them to know that even amidst the struggles, I really do have such a great life. I realize that there are a lot more people and a lot more families this Christmas season who are less fortunate then my family is.

I know it will all work out.
I just don't know how.
What does it mean this time that "The Lord's in charge?"
What is His plan.
Sometimes I just wish I knew.
So I could prepare for the worst or plan for the best.
But, that would take away so many of the lessons that I've already learned the past two weeks.

For instance....
I'm learning what it means to Really feel of the Atonement.
I hope I am understanding it right.
It doesn't make the trial, the emotions, or the unanswered questions go away.
But it makes them a lot easier to bear.
It makes the weight of the burden feel a little bit lighter.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Believe it or not, this is a VERY short version.

So I got the OK to post about this on my blog, since it has made its way to the Facebook world.
This last week has been....well.....a duesy.

I have a brother with Cystic Fibrosis. (as I have mentioned before)
He was recently in the hospital for three weeks.
Out for 6 days.
And BAM.
Monday we get a call from his wife that he was once again admitted into the hospital for another collapsed lung. This is his 4th one since he got married.
Like not even a year ago.

So. The disease continues to progress.
David has met with Doctors at the University of Utah hospital to see what they are thinking about doing.
He has begun the process of being put on a lung transplant list.
The next week will be a week of huge tests and decisions.
He will have to get everything tested.
Heart. Kidney. Liver. Everything. They want to make sure that he has the best chance of survival for this surgery.

There is a 20% mortality rate the first year after surgery.
50% of people after 5 years survive, which is much much better then what he was given this week if he didn't get this process started.
Once everything is rolling and he is officially on the list for lung transplants, he will pretty much be given a pager and sent home. Two to three times a week he will go up to the University of Utah to get blood work done until a set of lungs comes in for him. When the lungs come in, his pager will go off and he will go up to the U of U and surgery will be underway.

If all goes according to plans, he should have a new set of lungs within 4 to 6 months.
It is hard to put all of the information together in a way that is understandable.
But, long story short, CF has begun to really rear its ugly head for Dave and our family.
CF is something that growing up I looked at as the disease that made Dave cough a lot, throw up in the pool, and take a bunch of medicines.
If only thats ALL it was.
The real, intense facts of this disease are coming to life for our family this week.
CF is a disease that is threatening to take Dave's life.
But, Dave is doing well.
He's positive and is so full of faith.

This week has been full of tears and emotional breakdowns,
It's scary, and lots of questions remain unanswered, and there are so many unknowns.
But we have tried to stay faithful and know that the Lord is in charge.
Its hard, and I know there will be emotional days, and more tears ahead, but there's something I've learned and I hope I can remember.....

Expect Miracles.
And if the things we want to have happen don't,
The Lord's in charge.
He's formulated a perfect plan and it's all in his hands.
Thanks Heavens.



Thursday, December 8, 2011

The PERFECT Christmas Bonus....

On wednesday after work, my boss pulled us aside.
This isn't an abnormal thing, this happens quite often in fact.

But this day was different.
This day we received Christmas Bonuses.
Unfortunately, my first thought was "YES!! I was hoping this would come!!!"

But then he said that this bonus came with strings attached,
This bonus was going to be a little bit different.
And it turns out that this was the best Christmas bonus I could've ever received.

My boss handed each of us five $20 gift cards to Walmart to give away to someone who needed them more then we did.
My heart was immediately softened and I was filled with compassion.
My next thought was "Anybody can use this more then me, I am so blessed. Not everyone has a job right now, and not everyone is as fortunate as I am"

I went home that night, and was a little emotional on the way home as I was thinking about how blessed I was and how fortunate I am at this time in my life.
That night as I prayed, I prayed that I would know who to give them to, a few people who would be EXTRA grateful for them.

Today, I was sitting in Carl's Jr., eating the BEST chicken sandwich I've ever had, when someone walked in and all he could afford was a small salad and a water. He had on torn clothes on a chilly day and you could tell in many ways that he hadn't showered for weeks.
I was overtaken by the strong BO scent that came as he sat down 3 tables away.
But the only thought that came was, "Give him a card"

I was walking over to his table, when he broke out in cuss words, and I could tell he wasn't mentally all there. And I made a decision I really regret.
I changed my path and went to refill my drink instead.
I got nervous about how he would respond.
Would he get mad that I thought he came across as someone who needed help?
Would he cuss at me because he didn't understand?

I let my weak sauce self get the best of me.
REALLY LINDS??????

I got in the car and really kicked myself for not following through on what I saw then as a very clear answer to prayer.
I mean, I talked to people who 18 months who I didn't know, and who were homeless, and I got cussed out more times then I can count. What stopped me today!?!?!
I couldn't believe I had done that. I was SO disappointed in myself.
I went back to work discouraged that I had let the "natural man" get the best of me.

But, at that moment, I made a promise though to myself and the Lord.
I will give those cards to 5 people who need them.
I won't ignore any more promptings the Lord is anxious and willing to bless me with.
I don't care how they look or what they are saying.

Today made me realize though how powerful the real meaning of Christmas is. Its about giving.
Its about the Savior.
Its about His birth which was such an amazing miracle.
Its about knowing who our "neighbor" is, and taking care of them.
Its about everything EXCEPT ourselves.

Today I have felt the spirit so strong.
I hope the Lord will trust me with more people in my path, so that I can help them in a little way.
It may be $20 to them.
But to me, it is the BEST Christmas bonus I've EVER received.



Saturday, December 3, 2011

Ooooohhhhh....that's RIIIIIIIIIIIGGGHHHTT.

Remember how like a month ago I was all excited to announce that I was going to start doing a "Random Saturday" Post.
And remember how I haven't done one since????

Thought so.
But lets be real, that means that I was doing something productive and not sitting in front of my computer right?

But let's be real, today, you will get the ultimate RANDOM post from me.

Thanksgiving came and went in the blink of an eye.
I worked that week monday-wednesday, and then thursday morning one of my favorite people came at 4:45 AM and picked me up to go to the airport, where I then proceeded to hop on a flight and go to Utah to meet up with my familia.

It was a blast, and then I drove home Saturday.
And got stuck in about 23458326791 hours of traffic. Super lame.

Then real life hit again and I have been a crazy fool running around trying to get stuff ready for a huge Relief Society activity I have next week, and a lesson I am teaching tomorrow.

Today I turned to my mom, and I said, "Really???? Why do I have to be such an over achiever?? Why can't I be okay with a handout not backed in some super cute paper? Or a table cloth that doesn't match whats on it?"
Yeah. That won't ever happen.
So I decided to finally embrace my OCD-ness.

I also still work like crazy. Work is good, no real complaints.
Part of me is starting to be in complete freak out mode because I feel like I don't know what I want to do with my life, or where I want to go, or what I want to be when I grow up.
I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE my job, don't get me wrong, but my goal isn't to be a huge money-making fool who works 50+ hours a week.
My goal is to be a mom of a bunch of crazy little boys, and a wife to the most handsome man ever.
And lets be real, unless someone moves in, thats not happening in Fresno.
So for Now I feel ok being here, but eventually I may get a little ancy.

Well, there is my random ramblings on my random life.
After Wednesday I will have about 10 more hours in the day to do something fun.

Like my goal for the week?
Start working out again.
I am not going to let myself use the excuse that "its just so dark when I get off work, and I'm tired."
Lindz - get with it, thats when you REALLY need to go.

Ok. Thats all for my ramblings.

Oh, not really.
You wanna read an AMAZING talk??
Read "Your happily ever after" by President Uchtdorf.
A. MAZE. ING.

Do it. I dare you.