Friday, June 30, 2017

Tourist Trap

My news feed is swimming with tropical destination photos of families frolicking and posing on the beach.  Or hiking through the mountains and jumping into lakes.  And everyone I know seems to be visiting Disney.

If I'm being honest, there's a bit of jealousy as I scroll.

It's been so long since our family has been on a vacation.  We dreamt of doing so this year, as it is Noah's last summer home before going to college.  But, then a medical scare with my husband wiped out the vacation days saved along with the hope of spending any extra change we might find in our couch cushions.


When the enemy seeks to hiss and remind me of all the things I don't get to do - or have - or places we can't visit, I must cling to the roots of the One who has already given me all I'll ever need.

I'm already a traveler, a tourist, as this earth is not my home.  May I not get trapped by the enemy's lies and manipulations to make me feel He has given me less.  Comparison is the thief of joy!

After my pity party, I'm reminded of all I have to be thankful for.  Despite not having answers, Tim is gaining health daily and by my side.  We have each other and an amazing son who still enjoys simply hanging out on the couch with his parents.  In so many ways, I know we are more fortunate than most.

Ironically, many of the photos I've seen online also contain complaints about the vacation they're on.  Disney may be known as the happiest place on earth but apparently it can also bring out the worst. I can recall some vacation disasters myself, or at least moments of the trip that were not so enjoyable.  In fact, our last beach trip ended with a visit to the ER, when our son fell and tore a ligament.  Not the souvenir we intended to bring home!

A wise and dear friend summed it up best today and I couldn't word it any better.  Sweetly, she agreed to let me share.

 No matter where we may be, we can still choose that happy place in our world. Someone is always going to want to rain on our parade, but we can choose joy, despite their disposition. 
Our own position is what really matters.

I know that my position places me in a bloodline as an heir to Christ. I am a child of the One True King! I celebrate the Giver of life and all He has given me! 
I can stand under His umbrella when others try to drown out my Son-shine! 
And I must remember that a little rain helps my growth process.

Tomorrow, my location may change, but I can still choose joy

Wherever life takes you this summer, I hope you pack and carry a little JOY with you!

Monday, June 19, 2017

Dad's Day Delimmas

After the month Tim's had, I wanted him to have a good Father's Day.  Not knowing how he'd feel though made planning difficult.  And, being that we couldn't do his favorite outing - fishing, it left us wondering how to make it special.

We set out Saturday for lunch and a movie, figuring both were indoors and cool so not to aggravate his breathing.  But about 10 minutes into the meal, Tim quickly deflated.  Actually, he later admitted that he wasn't feeling well when he awoke but he didn't want to disappoint us so he pushed through, hoping it would pass.  Stubborn man...

Once home, we got him tucked into bed and worked on making the most of Sunday for him.  It further put a kink in our plans because, as a side effect to the numerous meds they've pumped into Tim, he now has thrush.

Poor guy.

Father's Day is hard enough.  Every day is difficult when you've lost a child but a holiday dedicated to reminding you about being a parent adds to the sting.  Not that we'll ever forget Austin - or want to - but I usually try and plan things centered around what he loves most, in hopes to somewhat distract from the pain of the day.

When you take away fishing, fun and food from my guy, there isn't a lot left to make him smile.

But his baby boy stepped up big this weekend and helped Tim feel extra loved.  And the best part is, he did it on his own.  Sometimes I forget how grown up he has become.

Having his Dad in the hospital was tough on Noah and I think the timing of the holiday allowed him to share how much he really means to him.  When we returned home from church, Tim found a note and photo collage that brought tears to both of our eyes.

While his dad was napping, Noah set to prepping the feast he'd shopped on his own for.  My spice master had to tone down his plans a bit, taking into account Tim's tender mouth.  But, as always, our chef in the making did not disappoint.  (those ribs...that sauce!  Man, I'm hungry now)

As you can see from Tim's expression he was well-pleased.
And that was before he even tasted!


After dinner, when Tim starting hinting for dessert, Noah left to get his favorite shake, extra soothing in his recovery.  He came in with more than a frosty cup though and shocked his Dad even more.

We'd heard Tim mention a new pole the store got in stock and knew it was on his wish list. After losing a pole to the "one that got away" earlier this year, he was tickled to have a high tech version with an bite alarm.  Both Noah and I got a chuckle at him dream fishing from his recliner.  He held on to the pole until time to leave for work!

In the end, I think he had a Father's Day to remember and felt how loved and treasured he is to both of us.  Now to just get him well and back on the boat!

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Mind over Matter

One of our summer traditions every Friday is that Noah and I will go out for lunch on a culinary adventure.  We've been doing this for the past couple years and it's something we look forward to all week.  Given his interest and passion in the field, our trips seem to fuel his desire to be a chef even more.

We're a month into the season and this has been the first outing I've been able to really enjoy.  Sickness seemed to hit our family on the cusp of Memorial day weekend, so our summer hasn't quite been what we'd imagined.  Given that it is Noah's last before college, it makes it even harder to see the weeks slipping by.

Illness has taken the driver seat in the Blair house and attempted to steer and control our emotions.  While it has been what has kept from writing, I'm determined to not let it steal my joy.

Even when you're aware and fighting against it, stress has a way of sneaking in and distracting you without your permission.  I've noticed it in my guys, as they've been very forgetful.  Tim fell asleep the other day and left the dogs outside.  Noah turned his back on the stove and filled the house with smoke.  I'm not even sure what day it is most of the time so I know I'm not in any better shape!

For those of you who are inclined to pray, we're hopeful for complete healing for my husband from an unknown respiratory illness.  And answers.  This momma has a hard time hearing "unknown" and respiratory illness in the same sentence, after losing her son in a very similar way.

It doesn't matter how many eye rolls, avoidance, or even being called "Dr Google" by physicians, who don't seem to care about my concerns or lack of a diagnosis, I will press on.  

As determined as I may seem at present, it has been difficult to stay focused on what matters most and find joy in every day.  Yes, even this joy-seeking girl was knocked on her bottom the past week and had my own share of pity parties.

Though we've been blessed with church family and friends, who have walked alongside us, visited Tim in the hospital, checked in regularly, and are praying constantly, there have been times I've felt very alone. 

But God hasn't ceased in sending me hope and encouragement. 

Somehow messages always seem to come when I need them most, as well as scripture. It is no surprise I've been studying Ephesians, Philippians and 1 Peter, Suffering is inevitable in this world but despite life's roller coaster, our constant is the JOY of the Lord.  

We may never get the answers to why this is happening but we do know Who is in control.  Time and time again, I'm reminded that my joy is not tied to my circumstances.  Happiness can change with the weather but my joy comes within and nothing can take that away.

Aside from my faith, I've been practicing a simple technique I read about during the long hours waiting in the ER.  When we're faced with every day obstacles, chores, needs, we can choose our attitude in how we approach it.

Instead of saying I have to....I try to say I GET to.

Goodness, how that shifts my perspective.

I get to sleep in the chair next to my husband, night after night, because he is still with me.
I get to drive back and forth from home to hospital because I have a job to help provide for us.

I get to do extra laundry and dishes and sort out medicine and take on extra responsibilities around the house because God gives me the strength to endure.

I get to ask for prayers for my family because we have loving relationships with faith-minded friends who will stand with us in trials.

I get to stay inside where it is cool and keep my husband from the heat because we are fortunate to have a home with air conditioning.

And funny enough, I used the same technique to get through a creepy culinary bite that my son ordered.  Our goal each Friday is to either eat somewhere new or try a dish we've never had.  Yesterday we checked both those off our list and ordered a quail egg appetizer off the sushi menu.  

I'm not sure what we expected but the raw eggs staring back at us on a plate were not what either us envisioned.  Noah's giant hand gingerly picked up his tiny shell and held it up for me toast the moment.  

Instead of saying, I have to eat this slimy egg, I whispered, 
"I get to try a new experience with my son"....
several times before I sucked the concoction through clenched teeth.

I can't guarantee that this technique will make what your facing any easier to swallow 
but it will help you stomach what's ahead!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
 photo design by_zpsv1mvteci.png