Thursday, February 7, 2008

Ryan's follow up

All is good! That is all I have heard so far, not that we expected anything different. The follow up was with the transplant doctors. He is healing as expected.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

How many mailboxes does the average person purchase in a lifetime?

Before Neal broadcasts it to the world, I figure I will share my recent “accident” with you all. It also resulted in one of the best laughs Neal has had since surgery, so I guess it was worth it. I have only caused 3 car accidents in my life. Funny enough, they all involve mailboxes. The first was when I was sixteen and simply not paying attention. It was only a few houses down from where I lived. I not only managed to hit it, but get it lodged underneath my car so I could take it home to show my mom. My mom said she would handle it and I could go on to work. Unfortunately, we missed the fact that my license plate fell off in the street. Wouldn’t you know it the police just happened to drive down the street and find it! I got off easy simply buying a new mailbox and giving an apology, but Mike actually had to put the new mailbox in.

Mailbox number 2 was actually what we call “Big Blue”. Yes, a US Postal Service box. I think I was 17 at the time. It was in Neal’s neighborhood. It was not my fault, it was my portable cd player located conveniently under my passenger seat’s fault. Neighbors saw me do it, so I turned myself in (not that I would not have anyways). I got a ticket and even more devastating the neighborhood lost their mailbox. It was never replaced. A moment of silence for Big Blue please. Thanks to those that remind me of this every time I am in Elyria. If anyone ever tells you a 1985 Dodge Omni is not a great car, remind them of how mine continued to run no matter what size mailbox I hit.

That brings us to mailbox number 3. Sometime last week I pulled up to get our mail and forgot to close the door on the mailbox. When I backed up….CRUNCH. The door is still attached, but it is bent and our mail is now getting wet! Luckily the car was not harmed. I have already come up with a story for the neighbors. I can hear myself saying it. “I just cannot believe kids these days.” or “I cannot believe the mailman would do that.” At least I did not have issues with the riding lawn mower and trees like my sister did. I bet my mom and dad are so proud! This probably is not the best time to promote the Company Neal and I have started up.

The guys are doing fine. Neal is venturing out for his first time since surgery with Dave tonight. Ryan made it into work to see everyone this week. We plan to see Ryan and Les sometime this week. Ryan's follow up appointment is tomorrow. Matt helped me move some furniture around last night, but the only place Neal is comfortable sleeping is the couch.

Lesson of the Day

I read this on another blog.

A young woman went to her mother and told her about her life and how things were so hard for her. She did not know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up She was tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed as soon as one problem was solved, a new one arose.

Her mother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire. Soon the pots came to boil. In the first she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs, and in the last she placed ground coffee beans. She let them sit and boil; without saying a word.

In about twenty minutes she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl. Turning to her daughter, she asked, ‘Tell me what you see.’ ‘Carrots, eggs, and coffee,’ she replied.

Her mother brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they were soft. The mother then asked the daughter to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard boiled egg.Finally, the mother asked the daughter to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled as she tasted its rich aroma. The daughter then asked, ‘What does it mean, mother?’

Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity: boiling water. Each reacted differently. The carrot went in strong, hard, and unrelenting. However, after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak. The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior, but after sitting through the boiling water, its inside became hardened. The ground coffee beans were unique, however. After they were in the boiling water, they had changed the water.

‘Which are you?’ she asked her daughter. ‘When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?

Think of this: Which am I? Am I the carrot that seems strong, but with pain & adversity do I wilt and become soft and lose my strength?Am I the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat? Did I have a fluid spirit, but after a death, a breakup, a financial hardship or some other trial, have I become hardened and stiff? Does my shell look the same, but on the inside am I bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and hardened heart?Or am I like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain.. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavor. If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you get better and change the situation around you.When the hour is the darkest and trials are their greatest, do you elevate yourself to another level? How do you handle adversity? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?

The happiest of people don’t necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the most of everything that comes along their way.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

All is going good. Neal's lab numbers are starting to head in the right direction. Hopefully on Thursday we will see better results. His stomach is feeling better. We are continually fighting with his blood pressure. Luckily the doctors are trying to figure this out while he is still at home. His old doctors would have sent him to the ER. This morning I picked up a new medicine, so hopefully it works. They gave us a different medicine last week and it worked for about a day. I am continually nagging him about his fluid intake. He is having a hard time given in the past he could not drink anything. His output is still very good.

I put some updated information about the kidney walk to the RIGHT. The donation is tax deductible and I will be sure to get receipts out to everyone. For those that would like to walk here is the link --> Sorry Whitney's and Monique, I figured I could add you, but it started asking for information I did not have. I raised our goal to $1,000! We have to beat the Kidney Queens! Thanks to everyone for their support. Thank you to Kathy Young, it sounds like you bringing in a lot of donations! We are going to have a brunch after the walk at our place. Whether you walk or not, all are welcome. I guess it will be a little birthday party for Neal too! As Neal always says "Don't take my stuff!"

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Is it cold in here?

Neal is still in some pain. I do not really have anything too exciting to update, but it has been a couple of days. Thank you to those that have donated to the kidney walk. I keep having to raise our goal, so that is great! Thank you also to those that are walking.

I got to watch Connor on Friday night. We had a good time together. I went out and got some things to have at my house permenantly so he can visit more without his parents having to drag their entire house over! Ryan and Leslie stayed over for a little while when they came to pick Connor up. Unfortunately Neal was not feeling very good. His meds were so messed up, but I can already see that they are correcting slowly. The big reunion will have to wait. The dogs were better than anticipated with Connor, although one of them left me a present in the hallway. I am assuming they were marking their territory!

The joke now is that Neal took Ryan's "warm" kidney. Neal has had a fan on him constantly. Our house is already freezing since we have electric heat and it just does not work when it is really cold out. Ryan was in our house with a hat on! He has said he has been cold ever since surgery! Now many will laugh at this......but I swear after Neal had his first kidney transplant he suddenly had a pepper craving. First green peppers then red. I do not remember him eating these much before the transplant, but who knows. Let's just pray he now loves to clean, do laundry, cut the grass, and rub his wife's feet!

I believe Ryan's follow up appointment is later this week and Neal's is the 21st.