Friday, October 31, 2008

18 years...half my life

I met Jason on Halloween night eighteen years ago...I've known him now half my life. I think that's pretty cool!
Anyway, presenting...Sacajawea and her cousin, Rico Suave!

Em loves native American girls. She really had fun dressing like Sacajawea. She was pretty cute!

Before the black hairspray...

Here she is looking for Lewis and Clark...where did they run off to?

Xavy the polyester 70's guy...

The horrendous hairspraying process

Super cute cousins

That 70's guy let us ride in his 70's machine...swanky

The weirdest part was seeing Em as a brunette...which will probably happen one day, but just kinda weird. Hope you all played safely and had fun! Tomorrow is November!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Part 3 happened...

*Note: The asterisk was used to break up the spelling of the body parts not because they are dirty but because when people do word searches for p*orn on the Internet, Noah's site doesn't come up...since it's not p*orn and all...

Monday I thought we were done with the conversation for a a long while. But, notsomuch. Tuesday Em was curious about adoption. She wanted to know the reasons why some people adopted children and from whom and where those children came. The setting was the car and I wasn't cracking up to the point of tears this time. I actually had a lot of peace to proceed with some of the logistics, if you will.

Me: Em, sex is a gift from God designed for marriage that a husband and wife share. It is when a man and woman fit together in a very special way, and that is when sperm from the male goes up into the uterus of the female and fertilizes the egg, by God's design. He told Adam and Eve to be fruitful and to multiply, which meant He wanted them to enjoy each other and to make babies. He said it was good but designed it for marriage because outside of marriage it gets really complicated...

Em: How can someone have a baby outside of marriage? Do they just tell their body to have a baby?

Me: No, but it does happen outside marriage sometimes. Since God made sex to be a good thing that feels nice, some people think they can have it whenever they want and with people that aren't their husband or wife and they don't think about the consequences of their choices or who it could hurt. A baby isn't a 'consequence', a baby is a gift, but if someone is a mommy or daddy outside marriage, even though they love that baby, sometimes they make a choice to give the baby to another mommy and daddy that want a baby to adopt because they can't have babies...sometimes the mommy keeps the baby because they are grown up enough to care for and love that baby on their own.

Me: Sometimes our bodies don't always work like we want them to, you know, like Noah's didn't send all the right messages, so sometimes people can have babies and sometimes they can't, but those aren't the only reasons people adopt children.

Em: Yeah because Mr. and Mrs. G can have babies but they adopted David.

Me (thinking, you really get this, don't you, kid?!): You are right. They wanted to adopt a baby because they knew they could love that baby and care for him better than an orphanage could.

Me: Yeah, so sometimes people adopt children because they cannot have babies on their own, physically, and other times people adopt children just because they want those children to have a happy home to live in with a mommy and daddy. We know a lot of people who have adopted children from all over the world...Russia, China, Africa, Asia, Central and South America and North America. It's pretty special!

Em, very concerned: How come some mommies and daddies don't want their babies?

Me: Oh sweetie, it's not that they don't want them deep down inside. Sometimes in Africa for instance, the parents are too sick to care for their kids, or they die from some pretty bad diseases when their children are young and so the children are put in orphanages. Sometimes the mommy is too young to be a responsible mommy, BUT, she is responsible enough to choose to let the baby live, but just live with another loving family. That is a wonderful gift for a family that wants children. She'll always think about that baby, but know that God designed for some other people to care for and love that kid...

(There are so many other horrible and beautiful scenarios in the world but I won't tell you, sweet girl, not now, because now is not the've learned a lot in a few days...)

Me: Em, all we've talked about today is pretty important stuff. If you have any questions about any of this, remember you can always ask mommy and daddy about it. This isn't something that to bring up with friends or other family members, just mom and dad. Did you know that we are experts on the topic? We know everything about it. (Great! Did I just say that?! I'm no expert, I just practice...NOW don't start emailing me your questions...her name is Dr. Ruth...)

Em: You do?! Wow! How do you know so much?

Me (now, cracking up on the inside, outside smirk beginning to emerge, shocked at myself for saying the above line out loud...): God's word tells us a lot about it...and we've been married for a long, long time.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Almost part 3!

So, today Em's Nana and I took her to the Bodies Human exhibit in their town. The majority of the cadavers were males but there were a couple token females in the group, along with a room with fetus'. Em found it all very interesting and gave the overall experience a thumbs up. After seeing a few displays, Emily wanted to sit and write down some of the things she had seen...
Em: How do you spell 'spine'?
Me: S P I N E
Em: Let's see, I saw do you spell that?
Me: M U S C L E S
Em: I saw bones. How do you spell 'bones'?
Nana: B O N E S
Em: How do you spell 'bottom'?
Me: B O T T O M
Em: I didn't see a v*agina...
Me: Sure you did, on that cadaver over there in the corner...that one is a female.
Em proceeds to return to the display, bends down to look at the parts, and then asks, "How do you spell 'v*agina?"
Me (well, I proceed to lose it in a MAJOR junior high moment, I can't look down at my kid because I am totally cracking up, shedding tears, with a temporary senior moment of forgetfulness, not remembering the letters to the specific body part!): V...
Nana, in adult, matter of fact fashion rattles off the letters and saves my hide: V * A G I N A

Fast forward to the coffee shop after our trip through the exhibit...
Em: But how does the baby get inside the mommy's tummy?
Me: Uterus.
Me, stalling...stalling a little more: You remember. We talked about it before at home. The sperm from the the male fertilizes the egg in the female.
Em: Right. But how does the baby get up inside the mommy? Does the sprem wiggle?
Me: Kind of...
Em: Does it hop?
Me (Lord, how come Jason's always conveniently not around during these conversations...huh, huh, huh?!): It's not a frog, so it doesn't hop...
Me (Lord, I don't really feel like 'splainin' this right now...): Em, have you ever heard the word 's*ex' or 'interc*ourse' at school, in a movie or on TV?
Em: No.
Me: Good.
Me: Well, God made mommies and daddies in very special ways to fit together...
Em, now totally digging in her backpack, looking for sunflower seeds, not really paying attention any more, pretty much over the conversation: Can we go now?
Me: Sure. No problem. Let's get out of here...

I have to say, the juices just weren't flowing for the timing here...perhaps it was the fact that I was sitting across the table from my mother in law (whom I love), but seriously, seriously?! Give the talk to my kiddo across the table from my kid's dad's mom?! Notsomuch...

Friday, October 24, 2008

On the road again...

My camera died the second day of the Avon Walk, but don't worry! Jason ordered a new one that is being sent to South Dakota to his mom's house. It will be there just in time for me to take pictures of God's beautiful art in the skies. If you are new here, South Dakota sunsets are phenomenal!

I'll also post some pictures of Em in her Sacajawea outfit I made her. It is totally cute...though I'm still trying to decide if I should buy black hairspray for her or not. She wants me to dye her hair with one of those 28 day wash in colors...sorry, kid! Not going to happen!

Our friend is going with us so he and Jason can hunt. So...I get to be chauffeured to SD. While I'm riding along, I will be working on gathering some writing samples to give to a literary agent...I am so excited! Please pray for me, if you think of it, because I feel like I've gotten my mojo back! Em will be enjoying her many crafts and car trip activities sent to her by Nana for the next 12 hours.

Quick note: Em and I were reading in Genesis when God created Adam and Eve yesterday, but in my Bible (hers is the children's shortened version...) Anyway, it said that God created trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. I asked her to look around and see if she could see any trees pleasing to the eye...She looked at me with one of those "OBVIOUSLY" looks and said an emphatic, "YES!" I hope you take the time to look around this season and enjoy the color scheme God chose for His fall line...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

God's a gentleman...'s only when we are stubborn that He allows us to feel the consequences of our choices...

For anyone who thinks that God is a big meanie, exposing things in our lives that we'd rather have hidden, this has been on my heart and I really want to talk about it...we've all seen it on TV. Preachers, evangelists, public leaders, pastors, politicians, even private citizens...our private lives exposed in a public fashion, at least the choices we think we make in private. None of the choices we make in secret are truly just that...there is no such thing as a secret.

And when we try to keep things hidden in our lives, things that we think would actually shock others because it would reveal our imperfections, our temptations, our deepest, darkest longings, we actually believe that we've 'got it under control.' We've got it together. I am not trying to call anyone out on their sin. We all know that isn't fun! But that's what I'm talking about here...God first gently tugs at our hearts. It's like a gentle know someone touched your shoulder or called your name, but you turn around and you're alone. He lovingly will tell us privately, through conviction from the Holy Spirit, that something in our life does not line up with His divine plan for us. Sometimes, when we are listening and not too busy trying to perform, we obey His gentle nudge and experience grace and freedom. Too often at this level though, we take the grace for granted. Or, if we don't, we continue to press forward.

If we ignore His gentle nudge, the next one is probably through a friend, family member, or someone else we love and trust that would never want to damage our heart. God allows them to sense something in our life, not even necessarily telling them specifics, just leading them in a certain direction for prayer, and in their obedience, they talk to us, or just ask us how we are doing. Do we answer? Do we just say, "Fine." What do we do with that? Again, it's God nudging our hearts, convicting us of choices that don't benefit us or bring glory to Him, and, because we don't make choices in a vacuum, He's allowed others to pray for us so our eyes are opened. Do we pretend that everything is fine or do we take responsibility for our choices? Do we confide in our friends or do we try to work out our problems on our own, even when God opened the door for them to walk right into walk with us? If we humble ourselves, we repent, admit our weaknesses and imperfections to those people who know we aren't perfect for all obvious reasons, our hearts are restored to God and healing begins to take place. Again, grace. But will our pride for posing as a perfectionist pose a problem?!

We all know how God has gently nudged us. We, the viewers, are the only ones shocked or surprised when TV announces publicly someones secret choices made in private. I guarantee that the party spoken of wasn't shocked in the least. It wasn't the first time God revealed that person's sin to them, but because the person desired it to be private, and God hates sin in our lives and wants it as far away from us as possible, He'll do what it takes to expose it so we can move on and begin living a life of grace, as He designed.

Only the Enemy of our hearts will tell us to hold onto our sins. Only the Devil will tell us that "it's not that big of a deal...everybody has one needs to know about this one haven't acted on it, you've only just entertained the thoughts...this is our little secret...hold onto that anger, they deserve your choices don't affect was only once, twice, 100 times..." Only Satan thinks it's a good idea to try to keep secrets from God. God, however, knows there is no such thing as a secret. He doesn't convict our hearts to be a big meanie or rule maker. He convicts our hearts because He hates sin and knows its effects on our lives, on our souls, in our minds, our spirits. He tells us, gently at first, because He's not shocked by anything we do, nor is He looking to run the other way...that's us...we do that...He's STEADY.

None of us have to experience public exposure of our sins if we are quick to listen to God's many warnings and gentle nudges. God really loves us that much...Do we really think anyone expects us to be perfect? He knows we aren't, that's what the cross was for...

Before my girlfriends and I became friends, I put this out there: "I'm not looking for friendship that is fluffy and shallow. I want you to tell me hard core truth, even if it hurts. That's the only kind of friendship I'm looking for, so if that's what you want, too, great...if not..." I'll admit it weeds it out for itself, but the women in my life that I love and love me in return know better than to blow sunshine at me. Even if it sucks to tell me that I SUCK, I want them to do that so that I can grow, change, seek forgiveness, seek God's will more hotly. Yes, I disappoint. I make poor choices. I hurt feelings. But the more quickly I get on my knees before God and humble myself to the person I have hurt, the more quickly I experience God's grace.

God said He will expose those things that are hidden, He will bring things hidden into the light. His heart behind it is so we can be close to Him...close to the very One Who created us, close to the God of the Universe that loves you more than life itself, therefore allowing His Son to die specifically for you...

Tell God about it...since He already knows...

Friday, October 17, 2008

Lyme update...(thorough)

Because of the amounts of emails regarding this, here's the protocol I am on (I AM NOT TELLING YOU THIS SO YOU'LL RUN OUT AND DO IT. I'M TELLING YOU FOR SAKE OF MY OWN DOCUMENTATION AND RESEARCH. PLEASE, IF YOU HAVE LYME'S OR SUSPECT A CO-INFECTION, CONTACT A LICENSED PRACTITIONER!): borrelia series therapy by Deseret Biologicals that includes Borrelia, Babesia Microti, and Ehrlichia. It is for Professional Use Only and can only be given to you by your naturopathic doctor. It consists of 10 vials that I must take every 3 days, equalling one month, and then possibly more after that. I began the regimen on Monday morning, took vial number 2 on Thursday. The instructions say that between vials 2 and 4 an increase in symptoms may occur. Thus far, or leading up to this point considering it normal, here is what I have experience: continued constant ringing in my ears (years and years, with instances of sudden deafness which returns almost immediately), swollen glands in my throat (off and on since college with a one year strep infection my freshman year), achy arthritic wrists at times, bowel issues (but who knows what's 'normal' anymore?), some slight unexplained dizziness, which are minimal, just need to hold onto something and all returns to normal and some lower back pain, which I haven't had in years. I had it for about 15 years and couldn't sit, stand, lay down for too long. I really hope this isn't aggravated, though acupuncture is the only thing that helped it in the past.

The 'diet' has also been difficult to follow, though I know I haven't really will be interesting to see how that helps, as I know it does, but that everything bagel just appeared irresistible!!! A side note, I also take an Omega 3.6.9 combo, borage oil, a 20 billion microorganism 12 strain multidophilous, I drink apple cider vinegar for pH, drink chlorophyll to get extra greens, take a prenatal multivitamin (no...) , I try to drink nasty psyllium (hurl) daily (cleans out toxic build up in body) and drink cran water throughout the day for flushing my liver. I try to eat foods as close to the way God made them as possible (whole, minimally refined), I buy non-anti-biotic meats and eggs, and organic fruits and veggies. I also eat chocolate...I mean, if Jesus comes back tomorrow, my Lyme's will be gone since it won't make it to Heaven, but I'll have tasted one of His most amazing inventions on earth, at least...Also, for those following similar regimens, although you may crave alcohol or just have it once in a while with a meal, spirochetes thrive off of, as hard as it may be for some, it's something we must cut out.

I am really excited to share this journey here because of the number of emails I've received from other sufferers, or others who still have no answers from their doctors. I pray that this journey will encourage you to take that first step, even if the docs tell you your tests are 'negative', keep moving forward. I have learned a tremendous amount about Bb and its co-infections in the last two years and it only scrapes the surface. It is all quite intriguing AND, it does not only happen in Lyme, CT, or on the East Coast. It means we can't be ignorant. My friend's little boy was bit by a tick this summer an hour and a half from here, in CO. He tested positive right away. He followed the same protocol I am on, and is great...keeping in mind that was an acute infection...mine is 'chronic'.

Regarding women who have emailed curious about borrelia Burgdorferi infection during pregnancy, my doc is still waiting on the other doc in CA to answer her question regarding treatment while pregnant. Traditional Western docs have treated pregnant women for the disease. While I was riding the subway in NYC, I shared Noah's story, the reason we were walking, and my hope in Christ with a stranger named Amir. He was very sincere. He asked a simple question, "Is it possible Noah was simply born with the antigen, that's why it was present?" I replied, "I don't know. It could have been in utero, or passed through my breast milk. It's unknown."

As time has passed since meeting Amir on the subway, I've thought about that question a lot. I've thought about that possibility, but I am so curious if many babies are born with the antigen, the parents not knowing they carry the antigen, and it's passed off as 'failure to thrive', SIDS, or some other unknown or genetic weakness. (Just thinking out loud here...) Also, for all the unknowns in medicine: Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (which simply states the obvious: you are tired all the time OR SIDS...that gets me even more worked up: Sorry, your Infant Died Suddenly while it was sleeping...THAT'S NOT A DIAGNOSIS, IT'S AN ACRONYM FOR Shoot, I Don't know Squat!) It has also been linked in some research to autism and vaccination complications. I

t's a big can of that as I've dug in deeper, I am that much more intrigued with it's branching effects, if you will, that much more disgusted at modern medicine for 'ignoring' it, and that much more inspired to continue to look for answers and take action for the future.

But, I want to make one thing clear: Even if we did find a cure for these horrible spirochetes, or any other disease, and save many lives, that would be truly great. Truly! For a time...but we all will die one day and it is that day that is more important to me to share about...what will happen to the healthy person or Lyme, Cancer, Alzheimer, ALS, HIV, Malaria, Dengue fever, AIDS, Diabetes, CF, Chromosome abnormality, genetic disorder, etc. survivor when we die? Jesus wasn't offensive, or exclusive. He is the Savior of the world. He's the hope after death...because THERE IS A HECK OF A LOT MORE LIVING TO DO ONCE WE LEAVE THIS EARTH, BABY! I will work diligently to help find a cure, but even more diligently to encourage others with the hope of Heaven.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Part 2...

Well, Em wanted to hop in bed early so she could read me books, I could read her books, and she could draw some pictures. I asked her to pick out which books she wanted and she chose "The Bones Book" by Stephen Cumbaa, and, most importantly in this case, illustrated by Kim La Fave. It's a small booklet about our bodies structure including "An illustrated head-to-toe guide to the human skeleton, vital organs, and body systems." Perfect! And, there on pages 54 and 55 lie the very vital organs necessary to discuss with my sweet girl "Where do babies come from?"

Em: What do you want me to draw for you?
Me: How about Jesus coming on the clouds on a beautiful white horse to rescue us? (NOW, LORD :) )
Em: Okay, can it have a rainbow?
Me: Of course! He'll probably have those in the sky that day, maybe?

Me: Em, how do you think boys and girls are different?
Em, look of "OBVIOUSLY" on her face: Uh, girls are prettier.
Me: How else are we different? (Why argue, right? Hee hee)
Em points below the waist...
Segue onto page 54, the Female Pelvis. I assess knowledge base...
Me: Em, you know women have 3 exits, right? One for peeing, our V (yes, I used the word) and one for poop...
Em: Mom, you could have said, "Number 2".
Me, thinking: (You are killing me kid. This isn't the easiest thing. Work with me, here! Sheesh!)
I talk to her about ovaries, eggs, relate egg/chicken/chick story here, proceed with fallopian tubes, puberty, release of eggs due to lack of fertilization, exit of eggs through the ya, I didn't say that. Just an edited version on blog because I don't want weirdos here...ANYWAY...

Em: I have eggs?
Me: Yep. God designed women to have eggs, just like chickens, but not crunchy. (Dear God, help me out here...)
Em: Yeah, we don't have shells! What are my eggs doing?
Me: Right now, they are just hanging out...(Em interrupts with a smile on her face: They're just talkin'.) until the time when you become a young woman.
Em: When I'm 16. (Matter of fact)
*(Did I mention she's still just drawing the Lord's return this whole time? COME LORD JESUS!)
Me: No, not necessarily. Even though we are all females, God has made all of our bodies slightly different in that we don't all become young ladies at the same time and we don't all have the same amount of eggs. (Fertility talk at later date...)
Em: So maybe when I'm 13?
Me: Yeah...we just don't know. We'll just kind of wait and see. Not really something we need to worry about, you know? (Dear God, ditto last sentiment...)

Thank you, page 54, for having an inset of an egg and sperm. Segue onto page 55, The Male Pelvis, for further education...

Me: So, Em, these (insert biological definitions here...) are the specific parts God designed for males. Ours are mainly on the inside and theirs are on the outside. So, instead of ovaries that make eggs, males have T's that make Sperm, (again, not really knowing who might show up on google search at this point...bear with me).
Me: Sperm from a male is what fertilizes an egg from a female.
Em: Just like with the chicken and the rooster!
Me: Yep. (Except I didn't sit on you to keep you warm for 9 months...)
Me: So, see here (on page 55)...these are sperm...
Em: Are they fish?
Me: No, but they swim...(God, seriously? don't have to explain this to their kids...but I guess You know that. Nice sense of humor, Lord!)
Me: Men have millions of them but it only takes one to fertilize an egg to make a baby.
Em, wearing hot pink leopard print pajamas, look on face trying to calculate/visualize 'millions'...
Me: That's more than all the spots on your jammies!
Em: Wow! That's a lot!
Me: So, then, the fertilized egg, which is now a baby (insert life begins at conception speech here) then attaches itself to the wall of the uterus and it grows and then when it's ready, it comes out through the V.
Em: Cool. Will you draw me a picture of something?
Me: Like what?
Em: Like a princess, a castle or a rainbow or something.
Me: Gladly...

So, there you have it...the first of many more talks to come, as she wasn't even curious about the actual mechanics of HOW the egg and sperm hook up! THANK YOU, LORD GOD ALMIGHTY! I know that will come, but she didn't ask, I took that as a cue from her that she had retained all she could at that moment, was satisfied with the information, and will be eager to know more when the time is appropriate. So...GET TALKING! Don't leave me out here in sex ed world all by myself:)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


Quick, I have to write this before I forget...

Me: Is Clare pregnant?
Em: Claire, my babysitter?
Jason (simultaneously with Em): Clare N?
Me: Yes.
Jason: Yeah, about 6 months, maybe.
Me: Thanks for letting me know...
Em: Claire my babysitter? She's 16. How can she have a baby?
*Smoke fills the room, lights dim, Beethoven's Symphony #1 in C, Allegro con Brio begins to play dramatically, mom and dad's heart rates elevate ever so slightly...

Jason: No, not Claire your babysitter, Em, though that does happen sometimes.
Me, while scrambling egg, milk and cinnamon for Em's french toast: Em, God's design is that babies are born to a mommy and daddy, but it doesn't always happen that way.
Em: Well, then where do babies come from?
Jason and I both have backs turned to Em, out of corner of our eyes, see smirks on one anothers' faces...
Me to Jason regarding french toast: Want to take over here?
Me: Em, that is actually a very important question that daddy and I have wanted to talk to you about for a while. Mommy and daddy want you to learn this from us because that's how God designed it. It's important that you learn this from us and not other people first.
Jason: But, we don't have time right now to talk about this so we'll talk about it when you are done with soccer tonight...
Em, looking at clock, still waiting for french toast: It's only 8:00, we have plenty of time...
Me: Em, this is such an important conversation that daddy and I want to make sure we have plenty of time to share with you...and if you have questions.
French toast miraculously appears on a plate in front of my sweet peanut!
Me: Eat, Em, we don't want to be late for school...

SOOOOO, we've been praying for the right opportunity to share with Em on the topic of 'where babies come from' and waiting on God for His timing. I actually went to a 'sex talk' on how to share this important topic with our children, delivered by Mary Flo Ridley, about a month ago. I honestly went into the session thinking I was being proactive by a few years and wouldn't need that information until Em was about 25, the day before her wedding! Just kidding! But more like 8 or 10ish. Well, I came home from the sex talk and told Jason that I wanted to tell Em about it right away...NOW HEAR ME OUT...some may be freaking out at the prospect of telling a 6 year old how babies are made, but Mrs. Ridley shares that you don't start with the sensual part of the education, nor the fears and dangers, not right away. You start with the biological facts. Actually, she encourages us as parents to start with a mission statement, if you will, regarding the underlying foundation of truth regarding sex upon which you want to build the remaining components of your families sexual education. So, if you watched the video above, you got a couple of examples. Her family 'motto' is: Sex is a gift from God designed for marriage. Jason and I both appreciate that working definition, knowing full well, obviously from the conversation above, that we'll be explaining other scenarios...though, that layer of the big picture might not occur until a later time.

Anyway, I am so grateful to my friend Kim who let Em collect eggs from her hens last summer. Em knows that the reason the eggs aren't chicks is because they weren't fertilized by the rooster. This is something, biologically, she understands, yet without realizing there is the missing link of HOW the rooster actually carries out, we are going to go from there, relating that mommy has eggs and daddy has the 'fertilizer' component, using the official biological terms.

I'll give an update in case any other parent is nervous about this conversation. Jason and I are very much on the same page about educating Emily about the facts first instead of Em learning really stupid things from her peers on the playground. Also, we want Emily to be taught the truth, God's truth, and WE ARE RESPONSIBLE AS HER PARENTS TO DO THAT, not relying on the school system to do so. Ridley likened kids to sponges...they soak up all sorts of things that they see and hear and once they are full, when we finally try to teach them something important (like waiting until their junior high friends have already told them dumb stuff and experimentation may have already occurred), they get squeemish at the thought of talking about sex to their parents...EEEEWWWWW, HOW EMBARRASSING...the very people who should have empowered them with God's truth in the first place.

Ridley recommends peeling off layers of the conversation by beginning with the facts, plain and simple, always bringing it back to your family mission statement, and then, 1 to 2 years prior to puberty, the same sex respective parent takes the kid on a special little retreat or all day outing where you actually do talk about the more in depth topics, like fears and dangers, the world's social expectations, including STD's, pregnancy, oral sex, dating, infertility because of STD's, all sorts of prepare them for their future. She recommends drawing out a time line of life, like 90 years or so, and having your child dream and brainstorm about life goals and what things they desire to do when they grow up, putting those on the time line. Then, on a time line of 90 years, show them how short the time of adolescence is and then, share with them that those can all be things they pursue and succeed in, encouraging them that they are responsible for their decisions, and that some may or may not be able to come to fruition depending on choices made day to day, namely sexual choices.

Basically, if you are ever given the opportunity to listen to one of her teaching CD's or can hear her in person, I highly recommend taking the time to listen to Mary Flo Ridley's presentation.

As a mom, I have always desired to have this and every other area of life be an open door for my children to be able to talk to me. It is important that I not fearfully avoid the most important topics in life like God, faith, death, sex, hope, etc. because if I avoid them if I am uncomfortable with a specific question or topic, my children, who are designed by God to be curious and hungry to learn, will find that information elsewhere! They will! Sex isn't dirty. God made it. Yeah, God. He made sex and called it good. So, if you give pat answers to your children that 'We don't talk about that' or 'that's naughty', they will get the idea that it is wrong and bad. And, years down the road, what God intended to be beautiful inside marriage will be perverted along the way.

The world mocks Christians for abstinence education. I'm sad for the world for not realizing God made sex, called it good, designed it for marriage so life wouldn't have to be too complicated, yet provides Himself as our Comforter when it has broken our heart or shattered our dreams, knowing we are people of our own wills...because He restores. Teach your kids about the sex God will provide for the future great husbands and wives one day...

To be continued...

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Kind of a big deal

Well, long story short, Noah had the antigen for borrelia Burgdorferi (Bb) in his blood. He did not have the antibodies. Bb is a spirochete (a spiral shaped organism) that acts in a stealth manner and attacks the body at the cellular level. Bb morphs between a cystic phase where it is dormant and an active phase. Bb can remain dormant for years in your body, many times with the infected person not even knowing of its presence, until a flare up occurs, which can be aggravated by different things. Bb is the reason for Lyme's is what lives inside the infected tick, or other vector, that delivers the disease to the infected person. We sent my blood off while Noah was in the hospital...they found over 6 spirochetes in my blood...theoretically, my breast milk should have provided Noah with the antibodies to strengthen his sweet little body...but my body wasn't producing the antibodies because it obviously wasn't recognizing Bb as foreign. Does this make sense?

Well, doing the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer was great, but it also took a toll on my body and aggravated my Bb. And, I'm finally going to do something about it. It's taken me a while, obviously, to take this step. Seeing as how I don't have a lot of confidence in traditional Western medicine, I've chosen not to follow their Lyme's protocol which is 3 weeks of antibiotics, covered by insurance. That 'protocol' works only if you've just been infected, not in the case of chronic Lyme's disease. Chronic Lyme's patients usually need months, even up to a year, of hard core antibiotic treatments, and even then, relapses may occur. And besides, I tested 'negative' on the ELISA test, having only one antibody, therefore, according to their standards, a negative result...though my blood was sent to the guy's lab in CA who invented the ELISA test for the CDC, and that's where the spirochetes showed up in my blood. Interesting! I won't go off on many of my conspiracy theories...

Anyway, the reason I am sharing this here is because for over two years now I have done countless hours of research on this topic. Tomorrow is another part of the puzzle, and since many of you were here during the journey, I wanted to include you in this, as well. Tomorrow I will begin a homeopathic remedy for Bb. There are ten vials in all and I need to take one every three days. I am going to journal how I feel as it's possible that I may not feel amazing during this treatment. After one month, my doc will test me and see if I need to do another round. I am really excited and nervous at the same time. The part that will be the most difficult is the way I have to eat during the treatment. I have to avoid all things white, meaning; flour, sugar, processed carbs, white rice, and dairy. For the most part I eat this way, which means I'll be eating meat and veggies, which I like, but it's the chocolate that I don't know how I'll do without :)

For the record, one, I don't ever recall being bit by a tick, though it could have happened. Two, Noah never got bit by a tick, obviously...I've been bitten by countless mosquitoes, a few nasty spiders, biting flies, and hundreds of ants, but don't recall a tick bite. And three, Jason and Emily both test negative for Bb.

Depending on how or if this treatment works, which, by the way, a doc in CA and my doc here have had success with...well...

***10/13 a.m.: I already found a loophole! Ghirardelli natural unsweetened cocoa with 100% lactose free whey protein, stevia extract, ice, scoop unsweetened almond butter, original rice milk, and a Tbsp of Udo's 3/6/9 omega oil (and a banana if you aren't worried about glycemic index issues)...for anyone wanting chocolate and not able to eat the foods I mentioned above. I'm good at finding loopholes!

Friday, October 10, 2008


Em: Mom, what's an 'atom'?
Me: It's the building block of life. We'll need to look up the official definition when we get home, but it is a scientific term that describes the core of what everything else in life is made up of. Let's look it up when we get home because that would be something interesting to study when you track off...
Em: Because there's a song that goes: dun nuh nuh nuh, duh nuh nuh nuh, the Addam's Family...
Me: Oh. Right. Of course...that's the last name of a fictitious family that was a television show when mommy was little. They had the mom, Elvira, who I think was a witch, a cousin named IT with long hair to its toes, and a vampire dad or something. It was just goofy. Where did you learn of it?
Em: It was just a Halloween song we heard at school.

Have a good weekend!

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

I'm sorry.

I am not sorry for exercising my First Amendment Right, but I want to apologize to anyone who might read this blog. This blog was started as a means to update on Noah's health, or lack thereof. Then, God showed me that we weren't the only people on earth to experience tragedy and loss, so it has been a means by which to encourage others on this difficult journey called life. It has been a place for us to communicate with family and friends by sharing pictures and stories, as well. But, my original intent, and the way I try to live my life day to day, was for this to be a place where God is glorified and where hard truth be wrestled with, out loud, because I know I am not the only one that wrestles with God.

I know, like everyone else in America, I have the right to speak my political opinions. But quite frankly, politics aren't the most important thing/topic in life...AT ALL. So, I am sorry for my former posts on politics, not for the opinions I hold or convictions for which I stand, but for wasting your time. By that I mean, political freedom of speech is inundating all of us at every turn and if you want to hear/see/read it, you have ample opportunity. We can all exercise our choice to find it elsewhere. Your time, and mine, is important. That's why I don't post everyday...not because if you do, your time isn't important, but because we all have lives to live and I don't want to post something just so I'm popular or have lots of readers. That's not important to me. You are important to me, not as a cyber person but as a real person with a real heart who is loved by a REAL GOD!

I want to be true to my heart and respectful of anyone who might read Noah's blog and write here about perspective, eternal things and my imperfect pursuit of knowing God in His grace. Yes, there will be days that I don't post because my heart is blank, I have writer's block, or I don't see a need to waste your time with cyberbabble. And, there may be days where I post about something that has nothing to do with anything spiritual or deep because I'm sharing with family and friends about an Em story or something funny that happened. But, in all, I want to be a good steward of this blog and of the time one might spend reading here, as well as the time God moves in my heart to write.

It's been on my heart to apologize for wasting your time, and God's. I am sorry.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

I have cankles!

Thank you, everyone, for the opportunity to walk for a cure! I truly do have cankles (swollen ankles), but there are worse things, right? And, you know how your great grandma's feet have hundreds of broken capillaries...yeah, well, I'm not even a grandma, but apparently my feet didn't get the memo!

Our team was wonderful! Brittany, Catherine, and Dana kept me motivated throughout the streets of NYC. They literally had us walking all over the island of Manhattan, Lower West Side, Upper West Side, Harlem, Columbia University, all the way down to Greenwich Village, SoHo, Chelsea, East Village, NYU, over the Brooklyn Bridge, back over the Manhattan Bridge, Chinatown, up the East Side, past the UN, then over to Randall Island where the 26.2 mile marker was, and a hot dinner waiting. Unfortunately, since it's a walk, not a run, and not a race, they didn't block off any streets for us, so, we had to walk on side walks, dodge in and out of pedestrians, stop at intersections and crosswalks, and be in a constant stop and go pattern. None of us expected that, nor trained that way, so that took a toll on our parts, but we encouraged each other that, obviously, like anyone, we'd rather have strained body parts and stress fractures than go through chemotherapy or radiation...

I know posting after the fact is anti-climatic, but Internet access was nil. And then, I have only two pictures from day two of the walk because my camera went to electronics heaven at mile 4 of 13! Rude!

Below are some highlights from the walk. Thank you all, again, for the privilege of being able to walk for a cure in memory and honor of you and your loved ones. God opened our hearts and eyes to the lives of the people around us, knowing that each one of the 4500+ walking represented a story of courage, endurance, tragedy, hope and perseverance. As we walked I said to my team that one of my prayers was that for each one we walked for, the ripple effect of God's love would truly inspire others to share their stories for the glory of God.
This guy was out supporting his wife...there were several men who were actually walking all alone...the lump in my throat got tighter each time we'd approach one, just speculating their stories...
This guy's pins were for sale for $3.00 a piece. He kept showing up on different street corners over the two days, in different outfits, to encourage and cheer us on toward the goal.
Here we are braving an early morning NY cab. Even when no cars were around at 5:30 am, the cabbie zipped in and out of lanes and slammed on his brakes. Apparently driving in a straight line is boring? It was adventure at its best!
"For all the awesome people in blog world and beyond - Noah for Knockers: Saving them 2x2 Ade xoxox" That's what I wrote on the two story inflatable tower they had at the start of the day.
These towers travel to each city where Avon Walks take place.
At the crack of dawn...actually, before that...
Group stretch. I are supposed to warm up before you stretch, but this was more about bonding, really. The woman in the hot pink sweatshirt and pink hood right there was walking a survivor.
Mile 7 was significant to me because Noah lived for 7 months.
One "Riesen" to walk: for a cure.
Elmo was at Madison Square Garden.
We walked too quickly past this building for me to see a name, but maybe one of you can tell me what it was down by the Brooklyn Bridge.
Crossing over the Brooklyn Bridge.
My family and my boy at my back, pushing me onward over the Manhattan Bridge.
North of Chinatown you can find this colorful crew playing bike polo while shouting obscenities. It was quite the exciting spot to stop for a stretch. In Chinatown, one woman stopped to stretch and got whacked with a broom by an old woman.
The UN, where, well, pretty important conversations take place, you know!?
Some fraternity boys who came out to cheer us on!
Gracious enough to pose with this old lady! (To think...18 years ago, which is half my life, I was as young as these guys!)
My older sister, Ashley, walked the last 6 miles with us on the first day. Go Ashes!
We made it to the Wellness Village on Randall Island around 5:30 pm for dinner. That's right, folks...we left Pier 84 at around 7:45 am and proceeded to walk for over 10 hours. In training, Dana and I walked at 4 to 4.3 mph, stopping each hour to eat and stretch. We also didn't have to stop for street lights or weave in and out of people. As we were finishing up the last mile my sister played "Pride" on her phone for us as we weren't allowed to have headphones on during the walk! I can't even tell you how much music made a difference! It was a long day, but we did it as a team and we hope we made you all proud!

On Sunday morning it was raining but by the time we got on the course it had stopped. We booked it on Sunday and finished almost 3 hours before the closing ceremony. I have to admit that around mile 4 on Sunday my right foot was bothering me, but I thought if I just walked through the pain, it would help it stretch out and warm up...well, Sunday was the reason for my broken blood vessels, swollen ankles, and possible stress fracture. Again, not as bad as having to endure a disease without a cure...

I have stories of talking to strangers and sharing God's love over the course of the weekend, but will share at another time. As far as processing goes, I am still praying about all I feel God showed me on this trip. For now though, I just wanted you to know how grateful I am to God and thankful I am for your support in this endeavor. Thank you from the bottom of my heart!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Team "Noah for Knockers" is off!

Well, my sister and I leave in a few hours for NYC. Am I done packing? Why would I be? I'm one of the world's worst packing procrastinators...I'm basically done, I guess, but I think I must function best under pressure. Maybe that's why life at the hospital with my sweetest guy wasn't impossible for me...I just kicked into gear and did it. Are you like that? I mentally plan ahead, heck, I even packed in my head for this trip about a week ago, but, apparently when push comes to shove, clothes in my head do not equal clothes in my suitcase. The night before I left for college my freshman year...I packed. My mom called me yesterday to see if I was all packed, since she had talked to Dana, my sister the day before and she was packed...Jason will receive some sort of extra credit for being married to me on this earth, not because I am special but because HE IS!

I've been thanking him for his support in this endeavor. Never when I signed up for the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer did I realize the amount of time and energy that would go into preparations. I am really excited that this upcoming weekend is the culmination of months of training and fundraising. He rocks as my husband, best friend, and as Em's daddy! I told him yesterday that when I get home from this memorable weekend, I look forward to being a wife and mom again, (and friend, as I've been a sucky one on all levels), as I know I have not been the best...not that I'm expecting to suddenly be the best, either, since that was never a title for me prior to this, but you know what I mean.

On the business side of things: We may go to the TODAY show on Rockefeller Plaza and hold up a big sign that says, "Noah for Knockers: Saving them 2 x 2" on either Thursday or Friday morning, so if you are bored, you can look for us. Also, I am excited to be able to share Noah's story with a group of women on Thursday night, so if you think of it, please say a little prayer for me...that God would share and that He would be glorified through others lives being encouraged.

I'm taking my computer and camera, so hope to update on Saturday and Sunday after our walks.

The big cat and my little mouse are going to play while I'm away...they are going to see the gold medal gymnast Olympians flip and twirl and do amazing feats of strength! It's a surprise, so don't tell EM! She is going to freak out! I wish I could be here to see her face! I'm really going to miss them!

Thanks for your prayers for our team!