Saturday, October 30, 2010

What a thrill!

What a thrill! Woohoo! We had so much fun today at the Paraclete SkyVenture. It really was quite a thrill! We had planned to do this in September for my best friend Ashley's birthday. They had to reschedule us because they were doing work on the tunnel. I really had no idea of what to expect. Tommy was uncertain he was going to do it because he has a huge fear of heights.
Ashley and I upon arrival :)

We were early so we got to go up and watch a group of guys from France; they are the "champions" with their tricks and movements. Some of their stuff was crazy to see but they made it look so easy!

Here's a shot of the main part of the wind tunnel; it goes up 60 feet from this point
While we were watching Tommy was a bit nervous not knowing if he was going to be able to do it. You actually go into the tunnel right through the door (towards the right side of the picture). You stand there and basically fall right into the air, it's not like you're dropping 60 feet and then stopping. Ashley and I finally pressured (ha ha) him into doing it. We then had to go for our instructional class so we'd know the hand signals and what to do with our bodies :)

Demonstrating proper technique

Then we were equipped and ready to go!

With the flight time we had today it was equivalent to skydiving from 13,000 feet and we did it twice. I actually didn't do bad. The instructor said we all did really well for our first time. He had to spin Tommy and Ashley to get them in the "spinning mode" but for some reason I just had this au natural spin. When we were finished, Tommy said, I want to do it again---he loved it! Actually, we all did. We have a video of it too, we weren't allowed to bring the cameras into the holding chamber for obvious reasons, and if we can get it uploaded, I'll post it for you to see.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Positive thinking

Tommy and I had the privilege of attending a dinner auction benefit for cystic fibrosis last night. It was a lot of fun. Tommy ended up with two fishing poles by the time the night was over :) One will be an early birthday present for my dad.

One of my student's has cystic fibrosis and I never really knew much about it until her mom came in to talk to us. It's a pretty scary and serious disease that affects so many children. One of the men who spoke last night was very encouraging in his words. He was diagnosed with CF at age 2 and had a double lung transplant 20 years ago. He is the longest living survivor of a double lung transplant. Anyways, during his speech, he said his parents were always positive. He said he never knew how to think any other way. He said of course he was nervous when the time came for transplant but he just thought to himself, this will work. He said the best advice he can give is to think positive and believe in impossibilities.

Those few words rang so true in so many areas of our lives. My heart hurts for people going through diseases, cancer, and then of course IF. When I look back now, I see how IF has changed us and while we didn't know it before, it has changed us for the good. We started this process almost 4 years ago, so I've been there. I've cried over those negative pregnancy tests, mourned the loss of our babies, and felt frustrated when all seemed out of control. Almost 2 years ago (next Saturday), we transferred our last frozen embryo. It didn't work and it was after that time that we felt God pulling us in another direction. We knew we couldn't go through more treatments.

There are many people around us right now that are pregnant. I am truly excited for them but I hope they bask in the blessing that God has given them. I think so many people take that for granted. See the last post for more on that!

This week has been a good one. I have received many notes, emails, calls etc from friends and family just to let us know that they were praying for us and thinking about us. That gives me hope and keeps us going on this journey.

Just an update about our hairdresser's friends in the car accident. The husband is still in ICU; they had to remove half of his skull because of the swelling in the brain. They are not sure yet how much brain damage there is. He still doesn't know that his wife is gone. Please continue to pray for their families.

Tomorrow we have our much anticipated, long awaited, trip to try indoor skydiving with my best friend. I can't wait to try it out!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Taking things for granted

My eyes were opened yesterday. My heart was filled with sorrow and regret at all of the things I've taken for granted. I'm very blessed and often times I go through life and don't realize just how fortunate I am. Almost 8 years ago, Tommy went into cardiac arrest and I was blessed that his life wasn't taken. After some time had passed, you tend to "forget" about those feelings because you get consumed with the day to day. Yesterday that reminder came back.

Our hairdresser is a great friend. We love him just like he's a part of our family. We learned yesterday that his co-worker, she's in the booth right next to him, was tragically killed in a car accident. 30 years old. Her husband is fighting for his life, in critical condition with possible brain injury and he doesn't even know that his wife is gone. I can't imagine. We would often talk to her when we were getting haircuts and she was so sweet. They were trying to have a baby. Like a lot of us, they had problems and she had just begun taking fertility drugs. All of that doesn't even matter anymore.

Even though we really weren't that close to her, it made my heart hurt. It made me take a close look at my life and realize just how blessed we really are. I'm so, so thankful that my Tommy is still here. I can't imagine my life without him.

I think we get so bottled down in the day to day, whether it be wondering when "the call" is going to come or that positive pregnancy test or a new job, that we forget about the blessings. We forget to just stop.......and realize what we really do have.

Hug your family a little tighter tonight and bask in the blessings God has given all of us.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Family Reunion

We've had another great weekend here. The weather is beautiful and it's still warm (thank goodness, I'm not ready for winter)! I will be glad when we have one weekend where we don't have anything planned so we can just kick our feet up and rest! But honestly it looks like it will be a while before that happens :)

On Friday night I had to chaperone the first middle school dance. They are always quite entertaining. I remember going to those dances and being goofy and it really hasn't changed much! On Friday afternoon before I left from school, 2 sixth grade boys were talking in the locker hallway. Here's how the conversation went:
Boy A: "Are you going to the dance?"
Boy B: "Yeah, are you?"
Boy A: "yeah"
Boy B: "are you going to ask someone?"
Boy A: "yeah"
Boy B: "who"
Boy A: "the list just goes on and on"
I thought I was going to fall out of my chair laughing at them. It was pretty funny! The dance was a neon theme and most of theme looked like they came right out of the 80s.

Yesterday we had a family reunion. It was for Tommy's Grandma's side of the family. It felt really strange being there without her. We did have a lot of fun though. We go out to the "country" where Tommy's Great Grandpa used to live. He was a farmer so there is a ton of land and fields there. We brought along our 4-wheeler and borrowed one from a friend. Tommy's brother and our nephew and a few of Tommy's cousins all met us up there early and we rode all through the trails. I'll post some pictures later of the riding :)

Our friends in Florida were supposed to be meeting with an expectant family today who are considering an adoption plan but the meeting was moved to next Saturday. Please continue to pray for them; we really hope that this is the one for them.

We haven't heard anything but are continuing to pray and seek God's will through all of this. Today on Bethany's facebook page they had this quote that I thought was appropriate for a lot of us, no matter what we're waiting for. "Waiting? Don't ever forget! "We have a God who delights in impossibilities!" - Andrew Murray

Sunday, October 17, 2010

8 months

First, thank you so much for all of your prayers and sweet comments for our families over the past few weeks. It's been tough but with God's help we have made it through. We know He is working and we're eager to see what He has in store for all of us.

It has been a beautiful weekend here. A little chilly in the mornings but warming up to the 80s by the afternoon. I really am not ready for cold weather so this is great! Yesterday we participated in the American Heart Society's Heart Walk in honor of Tommy. It was a lot of fun and we were so thankful to have some of our family and friends there to support us. Here was the poster we were asked to make in honor of Tommy. They liked it so much, the director of the event asked us if she could keep it for a few days. The top left picture of him (I know it's hard to see) was at the hospital for his first surgery. This was the first year we participated and I'm glad we did.

Last night we went to the movies to see "Life as we know it." It is a really cute movie. It is a bit of a tear jerker but was a good movie to see.

Today marks our 8th month of officially waiting. It's hard to believe we started this whole process 16 months ago. While some days are hard, most have been pretty easy and I'm so thankful for that. Of course our arms and our hearts long to have a baby in our home but we know that God will provide when the timing is right. We know that He's using this time to mold us and He's preparing that perfect child for us. We also know that with each day we wait, we are one day closer to bringing our baby home.

Today we also met my sister and her fiance down at the beach house to take their engagement pictures. They are getting married in May. Here's the one that I think is the best :)
Here's one of Tommy and I.

And one last one of my sister, my mom, and I.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

More sad news

My aunt passed away last night. It's been pretty hard on my dad. It's really hard seeing him upset; I guess mainly because he just doesn't get that way often. I know she's better off, no more suffering, no more pain.

I'm really praying we get some good news to share with our families soon. We sure could use it!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Weekend recap

With having yesterday off from work, I thought I would get a chance to update my blog but that wasn't to be :) Our weekend was packed with fun stuff so I had to play catch up yesterday on laundry and all of my chores!

Tommy started back bowling this year. He's actually a really good bowler and I'm quite proud of him (he'll never admit to his ability). Anyways, he took last year off with everything going on with the adoption paperwork and we just needed a break from it. He's bowling at a new place close to our house which is great. He had to have some work done to his bowling balls so we took care of that on Friday night. Afterward, we had a great dinner at Outback, just the two of us. It was really nice.

On Saturday, we took the boat and followed my parents in my dad's boat to a small island near here (only accessible by boat). It is still really warm here, for which I am so thankful--I'm not a cold weather person, so it was really nice. Tommy was impressed by my cast net throwing abilities---I caught half of the bait and my dad caught the other half. My dad doesn't like to admit it but I was the first one to catch any of the bait :) When we got to the island, Tommy and my dad started surf fishing. My mom and I decided to take a stroll and "shell shop" as Tommy calls it. I think we walked about 8 miles, so much so that my feet had blisters from the sand that night. We ended up finding all kinds of cool shells. I even found a sand dollar and a huge conch shell. I'll have to post some pictures once I get them loaded on the computer. They didn't have much luck with fishing. We were trying to catch red drum but they only caught blue fish and my dad caught a stingray as well. We did get to see a huge school of dolphin that came by playing in the water. We stayed until sunset and had a beautiful boat ride back to the marina.

I'm reminded each time we're out like that at how fortunate we are and how blessed we all are at the beauty of the things God has put all around us. It was a perfect day and very relaxing, something we both needed.

On Sunday, Tommy got called in to work and I went to church. We then went to his parents and had dinner and I helped her with writing the thank you cards for flowers/memorials that people had sent for his Grandma's funeral.

We also learned that my aunt, my dad's sister, is back in the hospital. Her cancer has returned and has spread. My mom called this morning to let me know that her oxygen level dropped about 50% and they don't think she's going to make it much longer. It seems almost unreal that we're about to go through this again.

After my pity party last week about waiting, I have felt much better about things. My hope is renewed and I know God is going to provide; we just have to wait for His timing (I have to keep reminding myself of this). Thanks again for your continued prayers and know that I am praying for all of you as well!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Back in the groove

It's been so hard trying to get back into the swing of things, not only at work but at home too. Thankfully I have a 3 day weekend this weekend so I can catch up on some sleep :)

It's been one of those weeks. The past few days have been downers. I have no idea why. It's probably a combination of a lot of things and I've been worrying about the adoption lately. Something I try not to let myself do but I'm only human and it happens. I just have to boost those prayers up a bit more and try to fully rely on God and what He has in store for us through this process. I checked in with our social worker at the beginning of the week and it sounds like things have been pretty slow. I know God is just molding us during this time and I just need to stay faithful. He will provide! That's how this whole adoption thing goes, at least for me anyways, you have good days and bad days but thankfully the good outweigh the bad.

A friend was placed with their second adopted son this week so that's very exciting and I'm so happy for her. They waited for the China program for almost 4 years and then switched to domestic. Also, our friends in Florida got a call today that their profile was chosen and they'll meet with the birthparents at the end of the month. I pray this is the one for them. They've been through so much already but our shining examples of how to stay strong and keep the faith through things like this.