Time to Write Again!

     It's been eight months. Eight long months since I posted anything on Lewisville Love. I have contemplated over and over again how to make a comeback while trying to explain my long absence. I love writing and sharing my home with you all, but life became more than just a little complicated eight months ago. Lately I've been seeing how everyone is posting their 2015 year in review on facebook. Not me! I am so glad to see 2015 end! It has been a tough, tough year. If there was ever a year in my life where I could just erase it, 2015 would be that year.

    We are in, what I call, "recovery mode." Life is starting to go back to "normal" and we are working through those challenges still lingering. Through it all, our faith has sustained us. And I'm not just saying that like some over stated Christian cliche. My walk with Jesus and love for His word kept me, us, going these last eight months. But life in Lewisville is real and not picture perfect. There were definite moments where it was really difficult to TRUST the Lord. There were moments when all I could do was cry out in prayer. When, Lord? Why, Lord? Where are you, Lord? Have you ever been there?

     2015 started out fine, but then there were job changes, and not for the better. I can work with tight budgets. That's exactly how Lewisville Love got its start. These changes, however, brought tight times like no other. TRUST. I have to say, we never went hungry, we always got the bills paid, and though it may have been last minute, there were in fact gifts under our tree. I'm ashamed to say how much I longed for a better situation. The "if only" phrase kept coming to mind and that's never a healthy exercise. Last week on my personal facebook feed, I was reminded by a candid picture of a poverty stricken child just how awesome my life really is, now, at this moment, tight budget, lingering challenges, health scares and all.

     So what about that health scare? Here's another part of our 2015 story. In April, after months of seeing a doctor and watching our daughter's health rapidly decline, we were assured she would be admitted to a program at our local children's hospital, and when I say local, I mean an hour's drive. She was diagnosed with celiac disease two years ago and it has been a very difficult journey. The pain associated with eating turned into fear of eating, which turned into rapid weight loss and a heart condition that was struggling to keep up with her frail frame. Some of you know how difficult it is to see your kids dealing with pain and illness. Seeing them scared to eat...heartbreaking. Our insurance denied treatment, and we were left in shock; we just couldn't believe it. Our doctors couldn't believe it either, but even after filing a grievance and spending endless hours on the phone with insurance representatives, we were back at square one. TRUST. Our summer was spent trying to make the most of our situations and doing our best to help our child. There were endless visits to children's hospital at this point, vitals were taken, weight checks, general health check-ups, and out-patient therapy at the insistence of our insurance company. We had ups and downs, but the pain and discomfort from food, vital food, proved to be greater than our hope to get her strong at home. Finally, after months of struggling, her tiny frame just under 80lbs now, and a slower heart rate than before was enough for the insurance company to approve much needed medical treatment. She was admitted late in October and after 5 weeks, she walked out of Children's Hospital a stronger, healthier, energized 15 year old who couldn't be happier to gain nearly 15 pounds! We're just a few pounds away from her target weight, and though she will always be petite, she will at least be petite and healthy.
Our home for 5 weeks

These last few months were challenging and I have to admit, rather depressing. I was walking through a dark valley and in those times, very few things mattered. Though I love writing about all things home, my heart just wasn't into blogging. That's why I took a break for 8 months. I knew things would get better. They always do. When you TRUST in the creator of the universe, even in the face of crazy trials, it produces perseverance which produces character which produces hope; and HOPE never disappoints. That's what I would cling to during these days. We walk through those valleys of the shadow of death; we don't stand still and die there!

     We spent those shadowy days reminding ourselves of the hope and promises we have in the Lord. We had to remind ourselves and keep speaking truth and hope to each other so that those dark moments wouldn't overwhelm us. That's how we got through it...that's how we're getting through it!
We are all going to face challenges in life. It's how we choose to deal with those challenges that define us. At times, I recognized I had lost my joy, and I knew I had to snap out of the drudgery. It wasn't easy, but I chose to TRUST and worship Jesus in spite of my circumstances. We're thankful these 2015 trials are coming to an end, but we will always have difficult times and the more personal ones will always linger.
Trials...just today, we got the news a leak in the basement is in fact from a frozen pipe that burst. I'm taking heart right now.

Overall, I'm thankful I took time away from blogging to focus on what was before me. I know it cost me in terms of losing readers, but I'm renewed to share once again on Lewisville Love and all things home.

I hope you can look back on 2015 with a smile, but if not, you're in good company. I look forward to a wonderful 2016; and if it proves to be just as difficult as this year, I will continue to keep my eyes on HIM.
Blessings to you all,