Monday, March 31, 2008


Natalie was a contestant in the Miss ETBU pageant this past weekend. Yep, that's what I said. Our a beauty pageant. She was wonderful. She represented Student Foundation, one of the many organizations she's involved in.

The competition included interview with the judging panel on Saturday morning, and then evening gown, talent, and on-stage interview Saturday night. She wore her two favorite prom dresses - the gorgeous black sequined dress for the runway portions and the blue shorter dress for the talent portion. She looked beautiful and did a super job on her clarinet solo and in all of the on-stage competitions. Even though Natalie was definitely the winner in our eyes, she didn't get the crown on stage. Here's the article from the Marshall newspaper.

We celebrated the evening with Nat and Brandon at IHOP, the college students' favorite late-night hang out. We are so proud of Natalie for participating and jumping out there and doing something unexpected.

The pictures of her on stage didn't turn out so well, but I hope you can see how great she looked.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Hospital time again???

What a week! This was one of those weeks that reminded me that I am NOT in charge of my life.

Just after lunch on Tuesday I began to have pain in my abdomen. I left school thinking that going home to my potty would make things better. Two hours later with no relief from the pain, Chris took me to the ER. I continued to writhe in pain until we saw the first doc around 5. Thank God for Demerol! Two x-rays and one CT scan later, the diagnosis is obstructed bowel. The second doc ordered the CT scan which confirmed the diagnosis; doc #1 was certain I was coming down with stomach flu. Anyway, the next thing I know, I have an NG tube, an IV, and a room on the 5th floor. (This is the Reader's Digest version of the story; I didn't get to the room until midnight.) The best guess is that the obstruction was caused by scar tissue left from a surgery almost 15 years ago. Who would have thought that it would cause problems so many years later.

Wednesday was a miserable day. The tube and the general yuk involved with it were awful. The pain was gone, and the tube did its job of clearing the obstruction. Obviously, I couldn't have any food or even water until the tube came out. The tube finally was removed Thursday morning, but I still needed IV antibiotics and other meds until Friday morning. I finally got to come home late Friday morning. Sleeping in my bed last night was heavenly!

Chris has been a prince. He felt so helpless on Tuesday, but he got help for me as quickly as he could, let me squeeze his hand just like I did when Nick was born, packed a bag for me by following my drug-induced instructions, called my absence in for me, and even called my professor to let him know that I wouldn't make it to class Wednesday night. He got supper for me from Magel's last night, and today he made breakfast and went to the grocery store and fixed the light in the kitchen. What a guy! He truly is the best husband in the whole world.

I haven't ventured far from the sofa and my easy chair all day today. I was hoping for more energy by now, but it's just not here yet. I plan to try to get out and do as much as I can tomorrow so that I can get back to work on Monday.

So...what can I do to prevent a recurrence of this experience? Eat healthy foods, drink lots of water, watch how I eat and how much I eat, and keep everything moving.

The bottom line, though, is that we never know what's around the next corner. It doesn't matter if it's a sudden health problem or an accident or an unexpected blessing. God is totally in control, and He uses every experience we have to teach us something either about Him or about ourselves. The best we can do is acknowledge His sovereignty and thank Him for getting us through. This experience has certainly taught me that I can't ever take my health for granted and that I have to slow down and take much better care of myself.