Sunday, December 7, 2014

Pity Parties

This month has been tough.  Dennis has been very sick, on oxygen, infections and stomach pain.  This is not fun for us during what is suppose to be the most wonderful time of the year.  Since he has been sick I haven't got to do much shopping and he hasn't got to go with me at all.  He didn't get to go to my Christmas party and we had to miss some parties.  OK, I am having a pity party.  I never claimed to be a saint and I sure am not acting like one this month.  I love to shop during Christmas season and right now everything has come to a stand still.  I also love church during the holiday and I miss my church family. We had to miss all the festivities downtown in our little town, I miss these things and I am sure Dennis does also.  Most of all I just want Dennis to feel better, it sucks that he has a spinal cord injury and that he has to feel so bad on top of everything.  The one thing when you are going through all this is that you have to dig deep and if you don't have something to dig into you are going to sink.  God is the one constant in our life that anchors us and gives us the strength to get through the day.  Some days Dennis feels so bad I am not sure he wants to go on and in those moments I get out God's Word and just start reading.  It truly gets better.  This Christmastime maybe God is wanting us to reflect on the best gift that He freely gave us.  I need to start meditating on this amazing gift. get in the thankful and praise minded spirit and stop feeling sorry for myself.  The internet has some great shopping deals!!


                    Jesus is the reason for the season!   Much love, Cheri

                                                   


                                                

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Thanksgiving 2014 part 1

I was thinking of what all I was thankful for this year and most of all I am thankful for everyone being healthy and no hospital visits for us this year.  One exception is my mom, who tripped over my dog and now has a bum shoulder.  This time of year always reminds me when we first came home from Houston 8 years ago.  We came home on October 1 and that first Thanksgiving at home was the best.  Being gone 5 months from home can make you very thankful.  The only thing that got us through that time was God and God alone.  This is from my journal when the holidays came around after Dennis’s accident.

“As the holiday celebrations moved closer we tried not to look at what used to be and look at the wonderful things to come.  I was very thankful my family was still together and we were celebrating the most wonderful gift, God sending His only son to die for us that we may live with Him.” 

Eight years later I am still very thankful for those things.  We do not take anything for granted anymore, and the time we spend with friends and family is more precious than ever.  Every day is a gift from God and we need to make the most of it.  Spread the Word, give Him the glory and love one another.  

Some pictures of when we came home 8 years ago! two very precious friends

  The plane I had to travel on from Houston!  Ugh

My family.





                                                              Much love, Cheri

Friday, November 7, 2014

Squirrels

I didn't realize how much I loved my squirrels until I started going through my photos of the little creatures.  I have taken a lot of them over 8 years since Dennis's accident.  You can say they are therapy for us.  Today I put nuts and food in "the barn" ,
                                                                      "THE HOTEL"
                                                                          The Maze


"THE VASE"



the maze

AND THE FEEDER

It is suppose to get really cold next week and stay that way for a while.  I hate cold weather so I got a lot of yard work done today and put summer things away.  :(
We dusted off Ronald McDonald so they could play with him.  Poor Ronald has been through it!  He has fallen from the top of the tree and been wrestled to death!


Hopefully they have enough food stored for the winter and can entertain Dennis and I all season! 
Much love, Cheri



Sunday, November 2, 2014

Unconditional love

 This has been on my heart for a long time and I decided to write down some feelings and prayers of gratefulness.  Do you ever feel like you have to accomplish something for someone to love and respect you?  Do you feel like you're not living up to the measure that your family and friends have set for you?  I hate that feeling and I hate it when I know people feel like that. My mom has always loved me unconditionally and I am sure it has to do with what she went through in her life time.  I hope I set the same example for my daughter.  If you feel that you are not living up to the worthiness of someone then I have good news!  That is God; our Father does not feel that way.  He loves us unconditionally and nothing we can do or say will change that.  You don't have to live up to His expectation, but because we love Him we usually want to try.  It doesn't have to do with grades, jobs, lifestyles, or money, it has to do with Him loving us and then we giving our love back to Him.  No conditions.  It is great to set goals for ourselves and achieve those goals, but we are all going to fall short and we should love people in the midst of those hard times.  My husband, Dennis, gets up every morning to take on a world that most people would throw in the towel on.  If he has a successful day, great!  If he has an unsuccessful day do I love him any less?  NO!  The same goes with our children, family, friends and everyone else.  We love them unconditionally or we should, just as God loves us. Christmas is coming and I always get a little overwhelmed and caught up in the season.  I have to always remind myself what the season is for and take a step back and remember what God did for me.  He put His only son on a cross, had Him beaten and then drove nails in his hands, so I could have eternal life.  Such unconditional love.  Take this season to reach to someone who is disconnected or hurting.  Show them unconditional love.  This season always makes me a little sad because of all the lonely people out there.  Go to the nursing home and just visit with someone for 10 minutes, you will be so glad you did.

On another note, I have one accomplishment.  I got a picture that I took on a road trip with Dennis one day, published in the Oklahoma Bankers Assoc. yearly calendar.  I'm not sure why they chose this picture, out of all the pictures I sent, but they did.  I took the picture but God made the landscape and colors.   Much love, Cheri







Friday, October 3, 2014

Vacation 2014 Part 2

We drove on to Clinton and ended up at the Route 66 Museum.  It looks really cool from the outside.


We enter into the foyer and it was also pretty neat, with a lot of old reminders of times past.




We paid out entry fee and started going through the museum.  There were some people in front of us from Finland and they were traveling Route 66 by motorcycle.  The museum was very small and it did not take us long to go through. 




But, of course before we left the town of Clinton we had to go here!

Best store ever!!!   I would not let Dennis go in this store for reasons known only to caregivers of people in power chairs!  Much love, Cheri

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Vacation 2014 Part 1

 As you probably know Dennis and I quit going anywhere for vacation after about three years of having to pack up all his stuff and unloading and setting up and etc.  It was not a vacation for me and he wasn't tolerating the climate very well, I needed a vacation when I got home from vacation.  I miss those days when you could go throw your clothes in a bag and take off, but as we say in the SCI world we have a new normal.  We take day trips and last year we went to the bombing memorial and it was quite the trip.  Bombing Memorial this is the link and there is a part one and part two.  This year Dennis decided we needed to go see the Route 66 car museum in Clinton and I decided to humor him because I knew there were a couple of antiques store in Clinton that I needed to check out.  We started the day and I left my purse at home so we got to go back and get it!  We stopped at Roman Nose Resort to eat lunch and it was wonderful.
We pretty much had the place to ourselves although there was one other couple from our hometown there!  We ordered appetizers to eat and they made me homemade guacamole since they were out.  Great meal!


The start of the day couldn't have been better!  Much love, Cheri 

Monday, September 22, 2014

Homecoming in my hometown.





Homecoming is a big week in my hometown.  Football, homecoming queen and parades!  This year I was on vacation so Dennis and I got to go to the parade and I haven't been to one since my daughter was a senior which was 10 years ago. But, as you know from my last post, the heat is a big deal to Dennis and it was hot.  We found shade for the parade and we had a little breeze so it was OK. These two little girls were the cutest future cheerleaders ever.
So then the anticipation starts and the crowd gathers downtown main street.  They block off traffic and the parade begins!
Here come the cheerleaders!

Here are the football boys.

My niece Karley is the Junior homecoming queen attendant.

Then we have the pep rally and Karley is helping with that also!


Then this is what you do to get cooled off!  You go to our drugstore that happens to have the best ice cream and dive in!
Great day and we won our game!   We love our small town life!  Much love, Cheri





Monday, September 1, 2014

Heat and Cold

Our little town's annual car show was this weekend.  My husband used to love this weekend, but me, not so much.  For one thing, the last weekend in August in Oklahoma is sweltering.  Plus, I am not into cars, they get me from point A to point B.  This weekend our friend Max came and got Dennis to go to the car show.  Dennis only lasted about an hour and the heat got him.  It's a bad deal when a quadraplegic gets overheated and I think he was right on the verge of getting there, but was smart enough to come home.  If there had been some wind it would have helped but of course, this is the one day in Oklahoma that the wind is not sweeping down the plain.  For a quad you can not be in extreme heat or extreme cold, so Dennis and I have a small window of time where we can comfortably do things outside and go places.  I used to take my vacation in July, now I take it toward the end of September. (Life changes, new normals)  But in the small time he was there he got to see a few people and he had a good time.  I, on the other hand, had an hour to myself and it took me 30 minutes to decide what to do.  #quadwifeproblems!  I didn't go to the car show this yea,r but I took some photos a couple of years ago.  There are some very pretty cars and motocycles that come from all around.


                    I loved this one!





                           !




My little town always makes me proud.  Much love, Cheri

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Eight years ago...............


Eight years ago today we left the care facility and went to our new home in Houston, Texas.  I had to say goodbye to my daughter and being a mom I felt like we were just abandoning her, but I didn’t have a choice.    My mom had said goodbye the night before, she couldn’t bear to watch us leave. The worst part for me was that now we were going someplace that we wouldn’t have visitors popping in on us anymore, we were alone and I never felt more alone than I did on that ride to the airplane and the airplane ride to Houston. The thought of living in Houston petrified me, but you dig deep and knowing that God was right beside me somehow helps you manage to plow through.  The plane ride was scary, very scary.  It was a 6 passenger plane with no co-pilot and they had to manually use an ambu bag to make Dennis breathe all the way there.  But nothing was scarier than walking into T.I.R.R., right in the heart of the medical district of Houston, Texas.  We met Dr. Donovan the head of the spinal unit and then went to the room.  It was to sterile, to cold and very old.  I kept thinking that it needed a rug, something to warm the place up.  I just wanted my mom and my dogs and I wanted my daughter,  but most of all I wanted my husband, my soul mate, my best friend, to wake up and tell me everything was going to be OK.  Unfortunately, you don’t always get what you want but, but somehow God gives you the strength to go on. It seems like this journey was a lifetime ago and yet sometimes I can hear a song or have a memory or a song that will take me right back there.  Although I am glad that is over and I never want to go through that again, God made me a much stronger person for it.  When you have nothing to cling to but Him, and He brings you through it, you come out stronger on the other side.


[ God’s Everlasting Love ] What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?

We went from this:


To this:


                                          There's no place like home.  Much love, Cheri 

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Finally...

We have been battling 4 pressure sores for almost 3 years.  It consists of the left and right elbow, right heel and left ankle.  Dennis had got very sick in late 2011 and he lost a lot of weight, and the aftermath of the weight loss is pressure sores.   Well,  praise the Lord,  after going to wound care for 2 1/2 years we are almost done.  Both elbows are clear  and the right heel is clear.  The only one left is the left ankle and it was the one the gave us the most trouble.  It was the one that got three infectious diseases in it at one time and he had to take 3 shots a day for twelve weeks.  We are so blessed that we made it through that time and now he is doing great.  He only has to go to wound care once a month to check on the ankle.  The downside of this is the "affordable care act".  Please don't leave comments how you love the affordable care act because they will fall on deaf ears.  We struggle because of this law and they did not think the shots were necessary.  His infections were classified as non-life threatening which is a lie.  Because of this coding medicines are not fully covered and hug presciption bills come our way.  Thanks OK, we have always been taken care of and will continue to be.  We cast our cares and trust in our God.   I have to remember to walk in love because sometimes when this bill comes up (among other things in this administration) I can get off the love walk fast! 

In other news, it has been hot!   105's
This picture isn't great because I took it through my window because I didn't want to scare him.  He was chillin in the birdbath.
                  
Right now we have a bit of cooling spell waiting on some rain.  Much love, Cheri

Sunday, July 6, 2014

4th of July

If you know me, you know that I am very extremely passionate about politics.  I believe in the constitution and what it stands for.  Before Dennis's accident we would always go to the lake with our friends and of course it was always windy!  When we got off the lake we would ride in to town and go watch the fireworks in our small community, sometimes sitting in the boat.  When Dennis had his accident he was in the hospital on July 4th and it was one of the worst most depressing days of my life.  I knew our life would never be be the same and going to the lake was over.  I knew my friends were there now, because life goes on.  As I was sitting there with Dennis, who was out of it, two of our friends came to sit with me that day.  They were a gift given to me from God and I will always be grateful to them.  So now, with SCI you learn to have new traditions and different normals. Now we go to our friends and have a 4th of July party.  The kids swim and we eat and visit and have a great time.  God is good.


                                                      Much love, Cheri


Thursday, June 12, 2014

Road Trip

I get very envious of people who get to live in the same town as their daughters.  It doesn't seem to happen a lot but I am very jealous of the people it does happen to.  Mine doesn't live far, but for Dennis and I, a road trip entails more than hopping in the car.  It takes planning and patience and we never get to stay very long enough.   So as a caregiver that is one of the most frustrating and
sometimes sad things for me.  Today, we decided to surprise our daughter and take her to lunch since she is working.  We had some items that we needed to take to her and we thought this would be the perfect day trip.  This is Dennis in front of the newly remodeled Student Union and yes, it is amazing, but, I am a sentimental girl and I want it to look like it did in the '70's.  I didn't recognize anything.  Where is the basement bowling alleys?  I should mention if you click on the pictures they do enlarge.



 So instead of the bowling alley in the basement they have banks and places to snack and very cool places to study and relax.
 The nice little teller asked if she could help me and I told her I would like to file a complaint.  By then Whitney had heard and saw me. 
Whitney was opening an account so we waited in the little lounge area and I took a picture of Dennis under a sign of something he always wanted to be!



 
They had a chick-fil-a upstairs so we grabbed lunch and ate outside where it was beautiful.



 
I was very impressed with how accessible the campus is now.  By this time I had smudged my camera lens!


We had a great road trip but it is always to short.   Much love, Cheri