Sunday, September 17, 2017

We Will All Have Houston's

Today we had a special Stake Conference with the President of the Seventy, L. Whitney Clayton who was visiting from SLC.  It was such a great conference and I had a great seat on the second row.  I felt the spirit so strongly as I listened to the speakers.  Here are a few points that I took away:

President Rodgers our Stake President:
The Saviors gospel can inoculate us from evil.  He gave 4 ways:
Savior-He is the center of our religion.  Our burdens will be erased with the Saviors help.  Reading The Book Of Mormon every day, will help us grow closer to our Savior.  We can overcome challenges as we strengthen our testimony of the Savior.
Holy Ghost- It can draw us to the things we need to do.
Obedience-Always be obedient to the commandments
Temple-As we attend the temple regularly, we will be blessed.

Elder and Sister Grear from the Area Presidency and President L. Whitney Clayton talked about Houston and the floods.  They talked about how so many people were helping those in need.

Elder Grear said:
We can make an impact on other's lives.
As we ask inspired questions our testimonies will be increased.
My favorite quote:  "As we understand the how's, we will be able to understand the why's."  This was referring to our challenges.  We often ask, why we have to experience trials and challenges, but we don't often ask how we can enduring them.  If we understand how to endure them and how we are to learn from them, then we will understand the question of why we must be tested and challenged.

President Clayton expanded on the above quote. 
We live in a day when we need to pick the things we hear.  The Holy Ghost is magnificent in helping us hear the things we need to hear. 
We are doing the best we can, but when we fall short, we can rely on the Savior.
We need to be humble during affluence.
He also said, that we will all have our own Houston's, meaning we will all have hardships and need to rely on the help of others.  But we will also all have the opportunities to help others through their Houston's.  We can find relief from our Houston's by turning to the Lord.  If we hold on, things work out.  It isn't as bad as you sometimes think it is.  It will all work out if you do your best.  The Lord will not forsake us.  He will hear our prayers.  And then he ended with my favorite scripture:  Helamen 5:12  "And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall."

I'm grateful that in my Houston's and when the winds and the rains come, that I have a steadfast, firm testimony of my Savior.  I know that I couldn't bear my burden's without his help.  The past 4 years have been tough, probably some of the toughest years of my life, but they haven't felt as tough as I know they should be.  I'm grateful for the many people who have helped me and prayed for me during my Houston.  It is my hope that I can be an instrument in helping others through their Houston's. 

As I come to understand how I can endure my trials, I know that I will and have actually seen a little of the why's.
Tonight I had dinner with my cousins, aunt and uncle.  We even spent some time in the backyard, commenting that it was so nice that it has finally cooled off (it was in the high 90's).  But at least it isn't over 100.  Even more exciting I saw that in the coming week we will have 80's!  Fall is on her way!

 Aunt Leslie had me run out to give the kids a dum dum lollipop; it's a Grandpa Young tradition!.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Montana-Camp Mak(e) A Dream

Last week was such a great week!  I had a layover in SLC on my way to Montana so of course I had lunch with my siblings that could get away from work!
My dear friend Teresa was waiting for me with open arms and a whole slew of smoke when I arrived in Montana.  Oh, my it was so wonderful to finally meet her in person, since we have been emailing for several years.  She invited me into her beautifully decorated home, fed me delicious food including blueberry crisp that was to die for as we talked and talked and talked!
From Teresa's I spent 4 days with 65 women at Camp Mak(e)-A-Dream, all of which have been treated for ovarian cancer.  Some have been in remission for many years, some have had recurrences and are continuing treatment, while a few others were finished with treatment and have chosen hospice.  Most of the women were over 50, but there were a handful or two of us in our younger years.  Sadly the wild fires brought some awful smoke, which prevented us from enjoying the ropes course. 
The first day we came together we sat in a circle and told a little about ourselves.  And on the last day we sat in this same circle and gave advice to each other. The chef was amazing!  All of our meals were mostly healthy and delicious.  Our cabins were super nice, even though the beds were kind of hard.  Lucky me, I got my own room, which I was happy about.

The retreat included rock climbing which was much harder than I expected, zip-lining which I can now check off my bucket list and several classes where we talked about different aspects of having OVC.  I spent a lot of time finding some hidden painting talent that I never knew I had in the Art Barn, which had more supplies than one could ever imagine.  There I also forged some wonderful friendships. 
We had a Time Travel theme night which was totally awesome. 
And on the last night we had dress up night, art show and an auction.  The sunset on our last night was absolutely breathtaking. 
 
This was a great time for me to re-assess where I am in my life.  I came away with answers to the questions that have been on my mind and many new friendships with some amazingly, inspiring women from age 24-81!  Until next year...


Monday, September 4, 2017

Another Hospital Stay

I came home on Wednesday and it has been fabulous being home.  But on Friday evening I started having abdominal cramping.  It actually woke me up at 230am and I was literally screaming in pain.  No one was there to hear my screams, but I felt like I was having contractions of my entire abdomen.  I mean I've never had contractions, but I'm pretty sure these felt like contractions as they would come and go.  I vomited once, more so a forced vomit and felt a little better.

Saturday morning some friends came over for muffins and fruit and I was feeling pretty good until about 1130 when the cramping came again.  I actually went to work at 1130 and breathed through the cramps and my patients complaints.  I saw 9 patients and then all of a sudden started sweating and dry heaving.  I was at the Indian hospital and they took me to the ED, but by then another episode had passed and I decided to go to the hospital closer to my house.  By the time I got to the waiting room I was in bad shape and thankfully my pulse was 152, which is pretty high for the average, not so much for me.  After sitting in the waiting room for a few minutes vomiting my brains out and wetting my pants at the same time, they called me back.  It didn't help that everyone was staring at me as I was withering in pain and vomiting at the same time.  In fact they called my name twice and a lady yells out, she's coming as she is watching me vomit across the waiting room.  Yep, I was one of those patients.  I was totally mortified.  But I was grateful they got me back, because there were several people in the waiting room and I thought there is no way I can sit here and wait for them all to go back before me. 

The PA that came in didn't have any personality, I hope he was new.  He definetly made me realize I need to smile more.  The doctor came in after and was very sympathetic and kind.  They then moved me to a bed, because apparently they initially put me in a triage bed, which impressed me even more because I got seen so quickly.  After some blood tests which were all normal and an x-ray that showed some air fluid levels, aka a partial bowel obstruction which I knew I had, the PA asked me if I was ready to go home.  Really?  But then he was like I mean we could put in observation for a while (still no smiling or personality and an ugly ponytail).  Idiot.  I knew what I had when I went in, but I also knew I needed some kind of treatment.  The pain meds didn't even work.  And really the best thing for an obstruction is not eating.  But then they offered me food.  So crazy.  Thankfully my friend Melanie and her husband who is my bishop came because my mom called them.  A surgeon came in and decided I needed a ct, which I didn't want to have, but I think the contrast was the treatment because it gives me diarrhea, even though I was totally not constipated.  I know TMI.  The CT showed inflammation like it did in April.  I did feel better by morning and was discharged before noon.  I hardly slept and was glad to get home.  I still have some soreness in my lower abdomen.  It actually feels like I just had surgery, but I feel so much better.  I attribute quick healing to prayers, fasting and a priesthood blessing.  All of the doctor's kept telling me I looked good, really I think I look like death.  I guess they were expecting a thin, pale cancer patient.
I'm off to Montana tomorrow to meet my friend Teressa and attend an OVC retreat!  And I'm not going to lug my computer, so I'll see you back in a week!

Oh, and my nephew shot this bear on Saturday.  No wonder there are so many fires in the west, Smokey is dead.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Back To School, But Still Summer

I'm always a little sad when the kids go back to school, the pool doesn't get used much and even though it's still in the high 90's in Idaho there is a slight change in some of the leaves.  I don't know if that is because the leaves are dying or if it means Fall is around the corner.  Yesterday I ran into the store and found myself walking down the school supply isle.  I took in the lovely sent of unused boxes of crayons with their multiple colors, unsharpened pencils and spiral notebooks.  A rush of memories came to me, reminding me of my school days with my oh so fashionable traper keeper, colorful folders and my super cool purple Jan Sport backpack.  I can still remember the smell associated with the beginning of school in my elementary school.  I have wonderful memories of school and was so blessed to have amazing teachers.

As I've returned today to Phoenix, the 110 degree's has me back to the middle of Summer and wanting my bathing suit, a cold drink by my side and some polarized sunglasses.  It's very hot here and I don't want to go outside.  Which is why I'm waiting for the sun to go down before I kind of re-stock my fridge.  I'm only here for a week before I leave again to Montana where it's suppose to be hot and smokey for an OVC retreat with 63 other women.  And I get to spend a few days with a blogger friend who also had cancer at the same time I was diagnosed.  I'm so excited to actually meet her face to face.  We've emailed back and forth for 4 years and we finally get to meet. 

Summer was fabulous!  I loved it so much.  Wrapping it up I had lunch with my girlfriends from college,
said goodbye to Alisha's son Dallin for 2 years to do a mission in San Antonio,
had a few last swim days with popsicle's,
and ate fresh tomato's, cucumbers, raspberries and corn on the cob. 

But, with school starting and Summer coming to a close, that means it's football season!
And hurricane season.  Thinking and praying for the people in Houston and their near 50 inches of rain.  I can't imagine something like they are experiencing.