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Rest, Breathe, Repeat

Credit: Home. Life. Encouragement

Update To Previous Blog Post / “Living My Real”

I’m not sure about you, but I for one, am thankful for the weekend to finally arrive.

While we still have no resolution to if my daughter will have her health insurance come Monday morning, (see my post, “Living My Real” if you are unsure what I am referring to), I have to accept I have no control over the outcome over this stressful situation.

We have done everything we needed to do. We faxed the paperwork to them, not just once, but twice. We faxed their information Wednesday night and again Friday morning.

Now we have to “just” sit and wait and pray when we check her insurance Monday morning we will see nothing has changed. We will see she is still covered like she has been her whole life.

After being consumed by all of this, I had a realization yesterday while I was in my back yard. God revealed to me, no matter how difficult life may be, His beauty is still around us.

Credit: Home. Life. Encouragement

He revealed to me, as I was pruning my roses, that no matter how beautiful life may be, there will always be the thorns in our lives. The thorns keep us alert, but they aren’t meant to consume us. The beauty of the bountiful roses is what we are meant to see.

Many times the beauty is hard to see, but it doesn’t mean it isn’t there.

Are you too, going through a difficult time? Have you forgot what it was like to just “breathe” because your circumstances are all consuming?

Today I have a challenge for both of us. I want you to breathe and open your eyes up to the beauty that surrounds you.

I know so many are experiencing a quarantined life, but I want you to go outside and do something that brings you peace.

Is this the sound of the ocean water and seagulls in the background or the quietness of a hike in the woods?

Is it a quiet walk or a relaxing bike ride?

It doesn’t matter what you do, but I would suggest just going outside, breathe in the fresh air, and just open your heart to God will do wonders to restore your heart and your soul.

Share with Him your need to release this stress and allow Him to replace that stress with a peace that only He can give.

My friend, take some time this weekend to Rest, Breathe, and Repeat.

#Findingyourcourage, #Keepingitreal, Anxiety, Burn out, Chronic Migraines, College Life, Discouraged, Exhausted, Journey, Keeping It Real, Life, Living The Every Day Life, Medical Journey, Migraine, pain, Parenting, Real, Stress, Trials, Weakness, Weariness

Living My Real

A Day in The Life of Our Medical Journey

Credit: Home. Life. Encouragement

This is how I am starting my day again. Sitting in a doctor’s office parking lot.

Today is a bit harder though. Today I could just sit here and weep as my daughter walks off by herself to go get 25-30 nerve blocks in her head for another month.

I’m choosing to not give in to my emotions though in just the off chance the “Corona Police” are not at the front door inspecting everyone (please, do not criticize my response). I know they are there to help and protect others, but when you live what we live, it isn’t easy to run into this “all” the time.

Thanks to this Corona Pandemic she has to do all her doctor appointments alone, because they will not let me anywhere near the building.

Seriously people, who wants to get all of these shots in their head and do it alone?

I can speak for myself, no, not me! I hate shots and I’m talking just the ones you get in your arm.

But for my precious daughter, she is getting them in her head to help with her chronic migraines. It is the only way she can manage them now. She does this once a month, but who knew we would ever get to a point in life where she would be forced, by others, to have to endure this all alone.

Today is one of those difficult days to watch her suffer and struggle.

I have already texted my husband asking, why?!? Why does she have to battle to live a “normal” life.

Why does everyday have to be one where she endures pain and overwhelming fatigue?

Why can’t she be healthy and live a “typical” college kid’s life?

This has been an exasperating week for us, which is probably why I just want to sit and weep and maybe even just cry.

Our health insurance, which is suppose to be the top of the line, has decided that because she reached her “projected” graduation date that they are going to cancel her health insurance in a matter of days.

These are the same people who pay a “ton” of money for her health care already.

So we have had to jump through some mega hoops to get the proof from her college, (that is closed down due to the Covid-19 crisis), to prove she is still in college.

I am completely baffled as to how and why this is happening still.

We are left now praying that everything we submitted will work to prove she is still in college. If just one person slows this process down, she will be left not covered by health insurance.

Without health insurance all her treatments will stop, she will not have access to the specialists we spent years trying to find, and we will not be able to afford all the medicine she is on.

This is such as scary thought as I write it. It should be something we shouldn’t even have to be going through. The system is seriously broken for this to be occurring. This was something we knew would be coming on her 23rd birthday, and that we were prepared mentally for, and would not have waited until the last minute, or in this case, second, to fix it.

No, in this situation, someone made a serious mistake 2 years ago and we are just now finding out about it and have literally hours to fix it before the damage it will cause to my daughter will be massive, debilitating and permanent.

So, I sit here with a knot in the pit of my stomach, looking at a busy parking lot. There is an ambulance and a fire truck at the entrance where I keep looking up to see if my daughter is walking out of.

I’m left to sit here asking God why? Why does she have to suffer? What will be her story? What will be her testimony? Why does every day have to be a battle?

Until God decides the time to reveal those answers, I know I just have to keep trusting in Him for the direction, protection, and discernment.

Are you in a similar battle? I know others are. Please know I’m here with you. I know the lonely feeling this life brings. Please know if you are, I standing beside you.

You’re not alone!

#Findingyourcourage, Bravery, Challenge, Courage, Encouragement Today, Faith, Image, Inspiration, Journey, Keeping It Real, Life, Peace, Real, Strength

God Is Able

Credit: @homelifeandencouragement.com

Today’s Encouragement is a simple and straight forward reminder that God is able.

God is able to…

  • Turn tears into joy.
  • Turn sorrow into happiness.
  • Turn fear into peace.
  • Turn weariness into hope.
  • Turn anxiety into strength.
  • Turn dreams into reality.
  • Turns faith into confidence.

No matter where life finds you, God is there and He is able.

If he can create all He created out of nothing, then He can help you with whatever struggles you may be facing.

Besides, remember this… He created you. If he created you out of nothing, does He not know you intimately already?

Cling to these simple words to get you through today… He Is Able.

#Keepingitreal, Blessings, encouragement, Inspiration, Journal Journey, Journey, Life, Motivation, Real, Rest

Seize The Moments

Sharing Times Together
@Home. Life. Encouragement

As many people are enjoying their weekend off and spending time running errands and catching up with every day life from a busy week, I want to encourage you to remember the simple things as well.

Remember the importance of spending some quality time with those you love.

“Love your family. Spend time, be kind & serve one another. Make no room for regrets. Tomorrow is not promised & today is short.”

Unknown Author

I love this moment my daughter captured last night at a football game we attended.

For those who follow my blog, you know the chronic illness and migraines my daughter struggles with on a day basis, so I have learned to truly appreciate the simple things we can share together.

I try very hard to not take time with her for granted, because I never know when we can go from having a wonderful time together to her struggling in pain again.

God gave you your family. Enjoy some time together this weekend.

Do not allow opportunities to pass you by. Those opportunities are moments to make memories and it is those memories you will look back on and cherish one day.

My Friend, enjoy your day together.

#Findingyourcourage, #Keepingitreal, #Stepsforward, Challenge, Courage, encouragement, Goals, Grace, Inspiration, Journey, Keeping It Real, Life, Peace, Real, Strength

Functionality Reigns in The Chaos

Do you have a to do list that is so long you do not know where to begin?

If you do then you are not alone.

I have taken this week, that we didn’t have any doctor appointments, to find order in my chaos and peace in my frustrations.

I found by making my home functional that this brought me peace this week.

I came to a realization in my attempt to find “me” that the biggest waster of my time is chaos.

I found if I can reign in the chaos monster and better use my time on stuff that matters and is important, then I am in better control over my stress.

And let’s face it… (nothing against dads here at all as we all love our husbands (most days), but when mom is stressed, the whole house is usually.)

Ladies and gentlemen, we need to find where our source of stress is and we need to learn how to tame it better.

So in my new found revelation this week, you will begin to see me post more practical every day tips to help us be better stewards of our time while encouraging and motivating each other along the way.

Are you game for this inspiration?

If so, feel free to leave a comment or a symbol below in the comments and together we will learn to tame the chaos in our lives, one step, one chore, and one day at a time.

#Keepingitreal, #Stepsforward, Believe in Yourself, Encouragement Today, Gratitude, Inspiration, Journey, Keeping It Real, Kindness, Life, Rawness, Real, Self-worth, Strength, Thankfulness

The Power of Love, One Stitch at A Time

You Are Touching Lives

My friend, do you ever feel like you are alone, just walking through life in the shadows of those around you?

Do you look at people and find yourself envious because they have friends and relationships and you do not?

Do you struggle believing you do not have them because you are not friendly enough or outgoing enough? You are not happy enough or have enough “things” to offer? You do not have enough money (as if that buys friendships and relationships)? You believe you are not loving, gentle, kind, humble, or empathetic enough?

My friend, I am here to remind you today those are lies the enemy tells you. I have felt them, all of them. Who am I kidding? If I am going to write a blog about being honest and sharing the real and raw feelings of life, then I need to admit I still feel this way. I am like you; I listen to the lies the enemy tells me. I listen to when he tells me…


I am a nobody.
• I am ugly.
• I am fat (ok… that might be an over exaggeration… more like squishy as my daughter told me when she was a tiny tot.)
• I am a failure.
• I am inadequate.
• I am lazy (because I don’t work outside of our home).
• I am worthless.
• I am “just a mom” (as if this is a bad thing, which I know in my heart it is not).

Oh, my friend, that word “just” has way too much power. No one is “just” at anything. No matter what you do or who you are, never let that word “just” define you. You ARE the BEST of what you do or who you are.

You ARE THE BEST…
• Husband
• Wife
• Dad
• Mom
• Doctor
• Nurse
• Lawyer
• Writer
• Police Officer
• Teacher
• Waitress
• Landscaper
• Janitor

This list is endless. The point I am trying to make is that no matter who you are or what you do, you are important! Your life matters and you matter to others even if you do not know it.

The enemy does not want you to see your value or your worth. He wants to keep you in a state of being unbalanced because this keeps you weak and dependent upon him instead of allowing you the time to focus on your Heavenly Father, who created you perfectly.

God wants me to show you that you are valuable and important. He wants you to see that you do matter to others (even when you do not feel it or see it).

My friend, I am writing today to show how much I struggle with the same struggles you do. I feel the same loneliness and the same inadequacies as you, but God has been working on my heart over the past few months. He keeps showing me the darkness I have lived for almost ten years is not the darkness I have to stay in.

I want to remind you today, both you and I are important to others even if we do not know it. Every person you encounter leaves a mark on their heart. Some people you may invest in a relationship with and some people you may never see again, but with every action, deed, or act of kindness you share, it leaves a seed planted on the heart of every person you met.

I have a sweet friend who became a friend because she was initially the stranger who lived next door. She was a stranger who I would see coming and going from our homes and one day those coming and goings forged a friendship that went beyond the simple gesture of a wave or head nod and greeting of the day.

Over time our friendship grew, and our simple respectful gestures became more about how to help each other. Her sweet husband would help me edge my yard so it would look beautiful from week to week. They helped me clean up my back yard from a hurricane, which I left for because my husband was deployed to Iraq and my daughter was only five years old. When I left it was a destructive category five hurricane with a direct impact for where we lived. I had to keep my daughter and pets safe, so we went inland and stayed with another sweet friend until the storm passed.

One of my hardest deployment stories that sealed our friendship was the day I sat in my driveway with my car loaded with everything of possible value (both physical and sentimental) and I looked at my house with tears falling down my cheeks believing I would never see it ever again. I was leaving everything we had worked hard for behind to be destroyed by a strong category five hurricane and when I came home again, I would have to dig through the pieces of our life to find what was left.

So, as I sat in my driveway I prayed over our home. I prayed for God to protect it. I prayed for God to keep the roof on it to protect the contents inside. I prayed for God to spare every shingle on the roof and the siding on every wall to include even the shutters on my windows. God tells us to ask for even the smallest of details, so I took him literal. I did just this.

After I felt I had done all I could do and prayed all I could pray, I drove out of my driveway to leave our world behind in order to protect our lives. I even left my neighbors, who were not evacuating, behind and even prayed for their safety as well.

It was with a tear-soaked face and a heavy heart that we drove out of our neighborhood and headed inland to a safer place with a dear friend whose husband was also deployed with mine in Iraq.

The storm came and left and God weakened the storm to a strong category one and a weak category two by the time it arrived. My house stood firm and whole. God honored my prayer and kept my home safe. Not one shingle, not one piece of siding, not one gutter, nor one shutter was torn from my house. It remained strong and firm, just as I had left it.

However, my backyard, which I forgot to pray about, was a different story. My backyard was a war zone. The backyard where my daughter played all the time was something that could not be recognized. I lost trees and crazy amounts of tree limbs and pine straw was thrown over every inch.

I tell you this story because it was a simple gesture of love and kindness that sealed my friendship with my sweet neighbor next door. They had the same mess in their yard as I did, but they tirelessly worked to clean up my yard so when I came home my daughter would not be traumatized by her back yard and that she would feel safe to play back there in the future.

They shared pictures with me while I was gone and knew there was no way I could come home to that destruction. They worked tirelessly for a couple of days to get my yard to something I could manage when I came home. They cut up the trees and took the pieces to the curb for me. They bagged and bagged up debris to get it out of my yard and put it all to the curb so when I came home, the hardest part of what I would have to do was done.


My friends, their random act of kindness to help “me”, just little ole’ me, their neighbor next door who we liked and became friends with, went above and beyond what I would have ever dreamed they would do for me.

Tell me your life doesn’t matter. Tell me you do not make a difference. Tell me your life does not impact others. I will tell you no… it does matter. You do make a difference. You are touching the lives of others.

You may not always see it, but in time God will reveal to you the lives you will touch.

I am writing today to share just when you think you are not making the difference in people, you are. You are touching the lives of everyone around you.

I have had a couple instances in the past couple of weeks now where God revealed to me that I am touching lives and I never knew it.

I shared a picture above of a beautiful handmade quilt and matching bag that was made especially for me by the sweet friend whom I spoke about who cleaned my yard from the hurricane. She is no longer my neighbor next door because they moved away, but our friendship has not diminish.

I did not expect to receive this beautiful quilt and bag and even part of me said, “why me?” What did I do to deserve this special gift for absolutely no reason? Why would someone pour their heart and soul into making such a beautiful gift for me?

My friend, this beautiful gesture was done because of a life I touched over the years even though I never knew it. Just because you do not see the lives you are touching does not mean they are not being touched. Be yourself. Do not try to be someone you are not, but more importantly, do not believe the negative lies the enemy tells you. Turn your eyes upward and allow God to show you what to do and what to believe. That is where your truth will lay.

Today, I will close by encouraging you to reach out to someone and share a random act of kindness with them. It will touch their lives and their heart forever.

#Keepingitreal, Bible, Chronic Migraines, Exhausted, Grace, Inspiration, Journal Journey, Journey, Keeping It Real, Life, Medical Journey, Migraine, pain, Rawness, Real, Weariness

No Matter The Pain, You Are Beautifully Made

Journaling Journey

Do you continue to worry over your kids? As parents, I am unsure how you do not. It seems to be bred into us as soon as they are born.

Today has been one of those days where I struggled with worrying over my Kiddo. It does not matter how old they become, when they are sick we worry over them. When they are hurt, we worry over them. When they are fearful, we worry over them. It does not matter what the circumstances are, their lives will always be intertwined in ours.

My daughter woke up with her head hurting badly. She had a migraine brewing, but what her migraine didn’t know was that she didn’t have the time for it today.

She is desperately trying to cram the final week and half of work from her classes in it in order to complete the semester in college.

I was worried for her because I could tell in her face and in her eyes how bad this one was. I prayed over her head as well as sought prayer from some faithful prayer warriors that this bad migraine did not turn into a mega migraine while she was at work.

I am so happy to announce the prayers worked. She still has her migraine, but it did not get any worse and for this, we are thankful.

Now as I write, we are patiently waiting for her weekly IgG infusion to finish. Every Friday night she has to do this two hour regiment. We should be getting use to it, but I have a confession to make. It isn’t any easier. By the time she gets home from work, pre-medicates and finishes from start to finish it takes two hours which if you do not get it started until later then you are pushing 11 pm to 1am before it is finished. We know this from several weeks of experience.

This my friend, this is rough for this tired mom, but I refuse to go to bed while she infuses as it is not in me to abandon her on this weekly treatment. So no matter how late it becomes, Shadow and I will stay up with her because we are in this journey with her.

Tonight she decided was good night for me to learn how to actually set up the entire process minus inserting the four needles into her legs, just in case something went wrong or she was sick and I would need to know how to do this for her. I agreed it was a good idea, but I just really did not want to learn how tonight, I know, pretty selfish of me, but I did give in to learn how anyway.

Now the worrying side of being a mom is praying her side effects will be minimum so she can get a ton of studying done tomorrow. We really need for her body to cooperate and not crash on her yet.

Do any of your struggle with a similar battle where you worry over your kids and just want what is best for them, but can not do anything beyond pray over them? Even though this is the best thing we can do for our kids, somehow, if we are honest with ourselves, it does not seem like it is enough.

I wish my daughter could live a “normal” healthy life like those of her peers, but God has a different purpose for her. We are unsure what that looks like, but with all the physical struggling she does, the grace in which she does it is a testament to the strength she has to endure all she endures.

My friend, if you or a loved one is in a similar situation, please leave a comment below and I will be praying for you to get through as gracefully as my daughter does. You have an understanding friend here so you know you are no longer alone during this journey.

I hope everyone has a good night and that you get the rest your mind and body needs. If you feel inclined to join me in praying for my daughter, this would be wonderful and appreciated.

Lastly, if you are struggling to see your beauty for all the pain and sickness you experience,

“I want to remind you God fearfully and wonderfully made you.” Ps 139:14 (NIV).

Please remember, In His eyes you are perfect despite how badly you may feel.

#Findingyourcourage, #Keepingitreal, Courage, Exhausted, Journal Journey, Journey, Keeping It Real, Life, Rawness, Real

Acceptance is Half the Battle

Journaling Journey

As I am beginning my day, which has not been an easy one to start, I am feeling a bit better than yesterday, in that I did manage to get caught up on a few things around my home that were weighing heavy on me.

As a result, I am not carrying those burdens today, but I am, however, carrying a huge burden for my business and wrapping up unfinished projects.

Yesterday, I did manage to prepare a few boards for signs, which makes me very happy. I re-stained one this morning so I will be able to finish it this weekend, thankfully.

I do, however, have a couple of projects that have me overwhelmed in finishing, so I am hoping today I can come out from under the weight of them.

My daughter and I are attending a local womens inspirational conference tonight and tomorrow and I have to confess, I am a little apprehensive about it. I am sure it will be great opportunity and hopefully inspiring, but I do not do well with things that are on Friday nights, as this is the night I am exhausted from the events of the week.

Our dear friend who is attending thought it would be a great opportunity for me to build my blog into something amazing and for us to grow our business as well. She also thought we would be blessed by the amazing women speakers who will be speaking too.

I hope she is right, as right now I can only see and feel my total exhaustion.

As a result of this convention tonight my daughter had to decide what she would do about her weekly IgG Infusion. We decided due to the late hour we should come home tonight at that tomorrow night might work better since it takes about 2 1/2 hours from preparation to completion to finish. This is the first time a Friday night activity has presented itself a problem with her weekly infusions. I am sure it is the first of many to come. As I stated yesterday, this is what it is like to live with a chronically ill person. You have to constantly work around appointments, treatments, and sicknesses, but it is not her fault and we do what we need to do to work with it.

Acceptance is half the battle of working around it.

@homelife&encouragement

Finding my Courage today will be to fight through the frustration of finishing these projects in order to walk away with a feeling of satisfaction knowing they are done and my customers will be happy.

Do you ever feel like this?

My Friend, what does Finding Your Courage look like to you?

Leave a comment below if you wish to share your day, frustration, or courage.

#keepingitreal, #Findingyourcourage

Anxiety, encouragement, Journey, Life, Rawness, Real, Weariness

Breathing Through Daily Life

Journaling Journey

Sharing The “Real” of Daily Life

What will my day look like? I have so much to do. Where do I begin?

Do you struggle with this some days? The list is just so long that it is overwhelming to even know where to begin.

Today I am feeling overwhelmed by my business. I am trying to still set it up so I can make extra money for our family. I have a couple of projects I need to create, start, and finish for orders. I need to work on my website. I need to do some accounting work. I just made a logo image which I needed for my website. I need to create some Easter products to sell and the list just goes on and on.

Then there are the house chores that need to be done. I need to get my laundry going. I have no clue what supper will be so I have no idea if I will need anything at the grocery store or defrosted from the freezer. I need to tidy up and clean the bathroom and dust before this gets any worse.

I have spring yard work that needs to be done before it gets ahead of me. Oh this list is just crazy.

I feel as though I should never complain about this load as I do not work outside of my home, but my blog is about being “real” and sharing my raw and real side so today I am doing just that. It is my hope and prayer it might encourage you to know you are not alone in experiencing the frustration of everything piling up on you. 

The struggle is real. It is not pretty or elegant, but it is real.

I know I do not work outside of my home, but this is just so much to do. I wish my husband’s health would allow him to help me outside. I know he works, but a lot of people do and still manage to do yard work. If I did not have yard work, I wouldn’t feel so overwhelmed, but it is what it is.

It is time to break out my planner and start sorting and planning out my responsibilities.

Do you get overwhelmed like this? It seems like when you do not work outside of the home that time should be plentiful, but for me, it is not. There is never enough time in the day to get everything done.

I am just thankful we did not have any doctor appointments this week. We are always appreciative for weeks like these where we can breathe again.

So where do I begin? Laundry… that is where I will begin and then get on my computer and do some business work as I think this is what is pressing me the most. I can take breaks and tackle home stuff. Time to take small bites and whittle away at the big piece of this puzzle.

I hope you all have a great day.

Today is a good day to be a good day!
Chronic Migraines, Courage, encouragement, Hope, Inspiration, Journal Journey, Journey, Keeping It Real, Life, Medical Journey, pain, Parenting, Rawness, Real, Rest, Strength

The Battle of Courage

Journaling Journey

It is Friday night again and we are sitting here together as Kiddo does another week of IgG Infusions.

This is not the best way for her to spend her Friday night, as most college students her age are out having fun, but doing it tonight is proving to be so much better for her.

By doing this on Friday night she is able to go to bed and sleep off the side effects that she was was trying to work (literally through) before she changed to Friday night. She is also able to rest her body tomorrow as she struggles through the remaining side effects.

She is amazingly strong and courageous. Every time she does this, she amazes me at the strength she has to sit there and inject 4 separate needles into her legs and then sit there for an hour or more while she waits for the infusion to finish.

For all she battles with her body on a daily basis, it breaks my heart to watch her, but I also find a sense of pride to call her my daughter because I know she has dig deep down inside to do something that the rest of us take for granted every day.

Her road ahead looks a bit dark as we struggle to figure out what it is going to take to give her her life back, but thankfully after four long hard years of struggling already and battling for the fights we have won and battling the fights we have lost, we are closer now to finding this solution than she has ever been in the years back.

It is my prayer that the journey she is on with the new medicines and treatments that there will be an end to this battle she battles within her body.

I was going to get ready to close until she just read me this amazingly fitting bible verse which I will share with you as well,

God is with her, she will not fall. Ps 46:5

God, you are amazing with your timing.

I was not going to write tonight as I often feel like what I write is not important and would not affect anyone else, but with closing with this verse and knowing Kiddo has no idea what I am doing, I know I was meant to write this tonight.

If you are battling a battle that is one you never dreamt you would battle, know you are not alone.

God has your back just as He has my daughter’s. He is with you, My Friend!

Find peace and comfort in this tonight.

Now I am going to close as I am sure Kiddos infusion should be close to being finished.

My friend, rest tonight. Allow God to take the burdens of the week away from you and sleep in the protection of His arms tonight.