We have had a C A R A Z Z Z Z Y S U M M E R ! ! !
YES WE HAVE!
In June, Austin, Jordan, Zach, Taylor (Austin's future bride), Andrew(our not officially adopted son from Korea) and Brooke(one of Sara's good friends) headed to Bonne Tarre, Missouri for World Changers. This was most of the groups 3rd or 4th time going. We traveled for 2 days in a 15 passenger van pulling a trailer. I--yes, Me--Julie, drove the entire way out there. And yes--there were a couple of times when it was a little scary, but we did arrive and no one died, so that was a BIG plus!
We spent the week doing a variety of things. A couple of us helped build a deck and a wheelchair ramp on a ladies house. She had been having to sit and scoot up her stairs because she couldn't afford to build a ramp. Some of our group rebuilt a deck on a home, and still others helped tar parking lots of a thrift store and some churches. It was hot and dirty work--but it was amazingly fun!
Sara went to Teen Extreme camp with her friend Jade and the Chinese Church in Jacksonville. They left the day after we returned home. She had a blast paint balling, ice skating, swimming, rock climbing and going to worship services. It was a fantastic adventure!
July rolled in with 4th of July celebrations at the beach, a trip home to Alabama for Ben and the girls, and I snuck off for a weekend with some of my girl friends. We also went fishing at my sister's house, we celebrated my dad's birthday, and we went to the beach and pool many days. We had Kim and Ed's girls for a few days and they had a blast!
We were rocking along until I woke up one morning with intense pain in my back. I went to the doctor and they thought I had a pinched nerve. Two days later--I went back to the doctor with pain down my arm and numbness in my fingers. Diagnosis--possible herniated disc. The next 6-7 days were a blur. I was on some serious pain medication. However, I did make it to church one of those Sunday's for Hannah's Baptism! Yes, our last child has asked Jesus to forgive her of her sins, and in her words "be the boss of her life" forever.
My mom and dad were there and after church was over my mom fell and broke two bones in her right wrist. Can you say emergency visit??? She ended up having surgery later that week to help her to heal faster and have more mobility. She is on the mend.
Then this past week we took all the girls in for their yearly check ups and the doctor thought Leighanne's spine looked curved. We just got back the x-ray report and they believe she has a mild case of scoliosis. We are headed to Nemours in late August.
Sara also had outpatient surgery today because one of the screws that she had had put in place to anchor part of her braces was too loose from the original outpatient surgery two weeks ago.
Finally, I had my MRI today and hope to figure out a plan to regain the strength in my right arm and lose the pain and numbness.
In all of this, I can say that we are still all hanging in there! I am in less pain and can manage the pain with Ibuprofen most days. I will be in physical therapy for the next 6 - 8 weeks trying to strengthen my crazy arm.
I also know that God is watching over us and helping us to manage all the ups and downs. Even when we don't understand all of the reasons behind the things that are going on, there are lessons to be learned if we pay attention.
Hopefully things will calm down and we will ease back into some kind of normalness. I say that--but does a family of 8 ever have a real "normal"???