Thursday, January 11, 2018

Happy 2018

Here we are in 2018 already! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and praying  that 2018 will be a great year! There's much to be thankful for already starting the New Year off.  I woke up January 1with a fever, sore throat, body aches, and a major headache.  I was miserable and by the time Shane came home from the shop, he made a call to Cleveland Clinic.  They wanted me checked out by a doctor at the ER, so I got myself ready and we went.  We were there about 6 hours. There was labs drawn, an influenza test, IV fluids, and a bag of antibiotics. The instructions were for me to call my doctor in the next morning and schedule an appointment with him in the afternoon.  I ended up seeing him in the afternoon and had another nose swab for the influenza.  It came back negative, but he said you can still have it even though the test is negative.  With all my symptoms and the way I was feeling, I was admitted to the hospital to keep an eye on things. Thankfully I as able to go home within 2 days.  I'm feeling lots better,  still just trying to get my energy back.  I was praying that no one else in my family would get it, and thank the Lord for his protection, they did not get it. 

The kids had a fun time enjoying the snow.  They have gone sledding, shoveled at our house and the neighbors, made forts and had snow ball fights.  They have even enjoyed having a bowl of homemade snow cream. Right now the snow has melted quite a bit, but today the temperature has dropped and Mr. Winter has come again.  I did enjoy the warmth while it was here though.  

School has begun again for the kids.  That means back to routine again, but it's coming along.  I was ready to get back into routine, just not sure if they were;). We've set some goals for this year and it's fun to see us all working toward them, whether it's reading the Bible through, praying more, studying harder, and the list goes on.  Our Pastor has a quote he shares"the biggest room we live in is the room for improvement".

Shane's keeping busy with the shop. God is so good and has blessed us.  For the month of January, he's running a Wash and Wax special for $50.00.  That includes a hand wash, dry, vacuume, glass cleaned, tires cleaned and dressed, and a coat of wax.  A great deal!   Just wanted to throw it out there in case someone wants to take advantage of this special.  

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend. Thanks for the love and prayers.  


Monday, December 18, 2017

Wishing you a very Merry Christmas!

What a busy time of the year.  The lights and decorations are up. The smell of baking in the air.  A few cookies were made. Shopping is about done. Enjoying listening to Christmas music.  The kids had their Christmas program for Sunday School and did a good job.  Looking forward to our Christmas Eve Service at 10 am.  The girls are singing in the choir.  Would love to have you join us.  Let's not, in the hustle and bustle, forget the true meaning.  What a gift He gave to us.  He came to live as man and take our sins away by dying on a cross.  His birth was supernatural and miraculous.  Don't miss the wonder of it all.  

I had a very special time with a very precious family.  I was able to meet my Donor Family.  I had an appointment in Cleveland and we took a different route so we could see them. We met them for lunch at Olive Garden. There were many emotions that day!  What a sweet family they are and very dear to my heart. His Mom, brother, sister, and her two children were there. I'm looking forward to seeing them again!  I can't wait!  Words can't express my gratitude to them for the decision they made for Gabe during a tragic time. 

The girls are getting over strep throat. Thankfully the rest of us didn't get it.  Lots of prayers, Lysol, and quarantining them.  It's hard not taking care of them like you want to, but know it's best so you don't get it. They had high temps of 102.2 and the other was 101.9. Thankfully they are on the mend.  

Matthew and Kelsey have braces.  They just got them on in December.  The first couple days it took a lot of getting used to. Lots of soup, applesauce, pudding, and Tylenol.  The second day of having them was their youth progressive dinner.  That was not fun, but at least there was something at each house for them to have.  Kailey is needing them also but trying to work it out with insurance.  

Shane's business is going well.  With the Peru shop closed, it gives him the chance to fully focus on Princeton's.  He has been doing a few more new things and trying some new products.  To God be all the glory for what He is doing.  If you live in the area, stop in and give him a try! You can't beat a car wash, vacuum, Windows inside and out, and tires dressed for $20.00. 

I wish you all a wonderful Christmas. Enjoy spending time with your family and friends, making  memories and treasuring those of the past, eating some homemade goodies and then again some more. Celebrate the season of Christmas, but don't forget the true meaning.   No matter what gifts you get or give, He gave the greatest gift to you. 
My precious Donors Family ❤️
Matthew fishing at the end of November!
From our Family to Yours-MERRY CHRISTMAS 

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

A little bit of everything

First off, happy 21 years of marriage to the best man in the world! He has stuck with me through the thick and thin.  He's been there in the good times and bad times.  We've prayed together, laughed, cried, and held each other tight through the storms.  Just to think, we are just about the age of our parents when we got married. I am so thankful for you, babe and there's no one else I'd want to have with journey with, but you. I love you so much!  Thank you for loving me the way you do!

I left you hanging after surgery. Sorry.  Obviously all is well thankfully.  They admitted me that Monday night and hydrated me since my creatinine is high.  I was to be the first case Tuesday morning, but was bumped to second case.  The transplant Dr's came in explaining that usually the cause of my issue is due to rejection. I rested as much as I could before going down since I was fighting a migraine.  Transport came to get me and I was teasing him about singing to me when I became super nauseous.  I got sick, but felt immediately better.  When I got down to OR, they huddled and I prayed with them, then before I was put into sleepy land, they had to put the tube down my nose since I had thrown up, they didn't want me to aspirate.  I tried getting them to do it once I was out, but couldn't.  With a few tears n lots of swallows with no water, the tube made it down.  I had an answer to prayer.  Thankfully there was no rejection and they were able to just revise the stoma. He said that adhesions were pulling it down.  I was discharged on Friday and had a follow up appt on Monday.  All looked good, so I was able to come home. We go back for a check up on November 13.  

This Saturday is a very special day for me.  I am meeting my donors family.  Lots of emotions are going through me and I'm sure with them also.  I'm nervous and excited.  They are a sweet family.  We've talked on the phone and text each other.  I can't wait! Please keep us in prayer as I'm sure it will be a bittersweet day. 

Thankful to God for all He has done!  I am blessed beyond measure! I can't thank you for all your love and prayers for me. God has brought me this far and I know He will continue to carry me through.  I just need to keep my faith in Him.  He knows what's best for me and knows my tomorrow.  He is so Faithful.  


Friday, September 29, 2017

It's been way too long!!

Wow!  Summer has flown bye! Lots has happened since my last post in June. Not sure where to begin with this?! We'll start off with the kids.  They all went to church camp this summer.  It was the first time to have all 3 of them go to camp.  It was quiet around the house and very different with them not here. Kelsey is enjoying driving. She helps clean at the shop for Shane, Kailey babysits, and Matthew is mowing and cleaning.  I think that we are nearing the end of mowing season though. They are doing their schooling and trying to stay ahead of schedule a bit.  

In August Shane had the opportunity to do a ceramic coating on 2 of his uncle's vehicles in Alabama. We decided to make it a family trip. We visited with the family and his aunts and uncles while there.  Also was able to do some site seeing. We went to the Helen Keller museum which was very interesting.  Went to the University of Alabama and got to see Leo and Una. They are some massive animals! They didn't do much, but lie around.  It was pretty hot. We went to one area and walked a lil downtown. One evening we watched a water show, where the water fountain lite up and danced to the music.  That was neat.  Before it started we were able to get some pictures all together as a family.  Glad we were able to make the trip as a family and it not be one to Cleveland.   

I was asked to share my story with a group of people at OSF Hospital in Peoria.  It was very moving to hear the donor's story and then also one recipient besides myself.  There was about 100 people there that day.  Yes, you can say I was a bit nervous, but I'm thankful to share my story and give God the Glory for all He has done.  Grateful for the team of doctors he has placed in my life. 

Talking about Cleveland, I am getting ready to face another surgery here soon.  On October 10, they are going to go in and revise the stoma and do a surgery on my stomach. Not sure how long we'll be out there.  Just praying that all goes well and there's no complications or setbacks. Yes, even though this is another big surgery for me, I can't complain.  God has been do good to me and I feel so blessed. I'm so thankful to you for all your love, prayers, and support! 
Me speaking 

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

2 Year Transplant Anniversary Already!!!

Can you believe it's been 2 years already? Time has flown by for certain!  I'm trying to make each day count.  I owe so much to God and to my donor's family.  God has been so good to me!  I am beyond blessed!  As the saying goes-better than I deserve.  I can still recall getting my phone call a few minutes after 10:30 AM from Julie, stating they had a match for me. I remember how my heart ached for my donor's family knowing they had lost a loved one and was grieving somewhere.  Wanting to comfort them with a hug.  I remember the emotions. The anticipation of whether or not it was the moment, or if it would be a dry run.  Waking up in ICU and seeing my family.  Noticing a difference in my body upon waking up from surgery.  Being able to eat my first meal.  Getting off TPN. And the list goes on.  I don't want to go back to the old Jamie.  God has given me a second chance at life and I want to live it to my fullest.  I feel like I see things in life differently now.  I don't want to take life for granted. Enjoy the simple things and cherish moments more. There's some bumps, but they're bumps and nothing too big for God.  You take things one day at a time and realize bad days come but good days are on their way. Thank you for all your love, prayers, and support for myself and family along my journey.  Please keep my donor's family in your prayer also, especially this week. May God surround them with comfort and peace.  It's not easy losing a loved one, especially a child. 

With Love, 

When I was 88 pounds. 
A week ago.  To God be the glory!! 

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Catching up

Things have been a bit crazy and I've definitely fallen behind on updating my blog.  Sorry for the lack of updates.  I don't even know where to begin, but let's see if we can get it going...  I had the surgery on March 10, and all went pretty well besides a few hiccups. I had multiple kinks in the intestines that they had to fix and bring my intestines back up.  They also put in a chimney ileostomy again, like I had in the past.  Not sure if it's temporary or permanent. They will wait a year to decide, which is absolutely fine with me.  I need a break and left alone.   This was a lot bigger surgery than I was expecting and it took me back a few steps.  Thankful I am moving forward. I feel so blessed to have the prayers of family, friends, and even strangers.  God has brought me through and is so good to me.  My heart aches for those that I know who are struggling and worse off than myself.  I am so thankful I'm in my Makers hands and he knows what's best for me, even when I don't. I've met some wonderful people along my journey and can only pray that I can be an encouragement and blessing to them. 

We got in time to celebrate Kelsey's birthday.  Hard to believe that she turned 16 years old!   Wow!  She did get her drivers license also.  Watch out people, she's on the road!! Don't say I didn't warn ya. Ha! No, she's a good driver.  Still working on the interstate driving a lil, coming on and off the exits basically. She has become a beautiful young lady who loves the Lord and is a hard worker. I'm proud of her.  She just finished schooling for the year. 

Kailey and Matthew are doing well with their schooling. They are behind in Math for the year and trying to get that finished up.  Matthew is cleaning at a local office once a week and starting to mow yards.  That boy loves to mow and work outside. He enjoys helping Shane at the shop whenever he can also. Kailey is enjoying babysitting. She does that about 2 times a week. The kids are trying to save up their money to go to camp this July. They are excited about it. I'm so proud of them.  They are big helpers!  I love my kiddos so much!  God sure has blessed me!

Shane has moved his shop in Princeton to 611 North Plesant Street. It's behind Princeton Pharmacy. It's very nice inside.  He's doing a ribbon cutting May 8 with the city's Chamber of Commerce.  He's going to be serving hotdogs that day from noon till 5:00ish.  So stop on in and check it out! 

We just got back from Cleveland. It wasn't a planned trip.  Sunday, I went to the ER with abdominal pain, nausea, and incisional pain. The transplant Dr's wanted me there Monday am for scopes and biopsies.  We got out of the ER by 11pm,  came home and quickly packed and were on the road by midnight.  We switched out drivers two times, other than we tried keeping the car between the two lines and our eyes opened. We made it there at 8:30 in the morning. The scopes and biopsies looked alright, but with the symptoms they wanted me there a few more days.  We weren't planning on being there that long, but better than turning around and driving right back.  They did more biopsies and scopes and blood work. They also gave me mega doses of steroids through an IV  a few days and increased my oral steroids.  We don't know what is going on, but I did have a partial bowel obstruction along with the intestines pushing on the inner abdominal wall.  We got home Thursday evening. Glad to be home. Just being extra careful on what I eat right now. 

Thank you for all your prayers, support, cards, text, and emails! Also thank you for the donations you make to my funding page at National Foundation for Transplants. We still pay out of pocket expense for the hotel, gas, eats, medications, .....  What a blessing you all have been to me in whatever way you support me. A huge THANK YOU from my heart!


An EXCITED 16 year old

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Heading for Cleveland soon

Next week, March 10,  I will be having surgery to have either an ileostomy or colostomy placed. I've been waiting for this to happen since December since it was discovered that what is left of my native colon is now diseased.  I'll be in the hospital for a week then have to stay at the hotel for 2 weeks.  So if you don't mind, pray that all goes well and I have a speedy recovery.  

Kids are doing well.  They are staying ahead with their school which they are all glad of so they don't spend their summer doing school. The girls have a youth conference coming up for church in a few weeks. They are excited to be going.  It's a time they have to grow closer iin their walk with God.  
Kelsey just finished her last driving course this week. She'll be getting her license at the end of March.  Watch out people!  Don't say I didn't warn you lol! No, she's a pretty careful and cautious driver. 

In April Shane's Shine Shop will be moving to a new location in Princeton!!! How exciting! It will be on Pleasant street behind Princeton Pharmacy and Carquest.  Things are going well and this year will be his upcoming 10 year Anniversary. 

In December I wrote my donors family asking them if they'd be willing to have direct communication without having to go through the organ procurement organization.  The weekend of Valentines I received a letter stating their contact information and I signed off mine to them.  I sent off my first picture to them.  I can't wait to for the first card directly to me, so I can know more about my donor and his family.  

In February the youth did a Valentine banquet at church as a fundraiser.  They fixed bruschetta and salad, toasted raviolis, spaghetti and meatballs or chicken fettuccine and breadsticks.  They decorated in Italian theme and we ate by candlelight.  At home for Valentine's Day we ate on my Great Grandmas china. The girls helped me fix salad, chicken with BBQ sauce, cheese and bacon, and topped with sautéed peppers.  We also had cheddar biscuits, asparagus, Parmesan noodles, and for dessert we had Oreo dessert parfaits. 

Thank you so much for all your prayers!  I know I'm not fighting this alone, God is right beside me each step of the way.  Also I know that I have the support of you all through your prayers, love, text, emails, and cards.   Thank you!!