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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Wandering a New Road

This problem I have is that every single time I get on here to type up a new post, the blank screen freaks me out because I have so much I want to share with you and then it feels like too much because I've waited too long. It gets so intimidating that I end up not posting which causes the next time I get on here to post even more dramatic in my mind. 

It's a vicious cycle I tell ya. 

Now it's been far too long once again.

We've been enjoying summer at home; BBQ's, garden picking, friends, sun, and so much more! :)

I'll start with pictures like usual...

One of my friends who is more like a big sister had a baby the end of last month. Let me just say that I have been gushing all over this little one. She is so sweet and perfect. While I sat at the hospital waiting for her to come into this world, I felt so inpatient wanting to meet her! I've now gotten to spend quite a bit of time with her and LOVE every minute of it. She's a keeper. :)

We spent a couple days of fun with Mike and Rae. It was our first visit in a looooong time that didn't revolve around our next long run. We did keep the idea of a run open, but ended up choosing to have a run free weekend. Fishing happened though! 

We have a new table! The table that was given to us when we were at the other house, we love, but it was too tiny! It only seats 4 and the two sides are hard to sit at because of the way the legs sit. I didn't have an issue with it, but other people I live with did...haha. Anyways, I still loved the table so we coated it with special stuff and it's now on our patio (which I'm sitting at while typing this up!). A guy at our church who is amazing with wood was willing to build us a farmhouse table! After it was built, Mama helped me sand and paint...perfect! It seats 8 and is ready for family and friends to eat with us. We have random chairs that we've painted the same color, so we're on a hunt for two more chairs! We've already enjoyed several meals sitting at it and look forward to the many more! Thank you Dennis for this beautiful gift!! 

We had a great 4th of July! We spent time with Cale's side of the family and had a blast! It was a BBQ with swimming and I wasn't sure how it was going to go. Cale ended up having so much fun...which included him throwing balls at his Aunts! Haha! We also went to see a movie and picked veggies from our slow growing garden! Looking at this picture I took and then looking at the difference now is huge! Yay for fresh veggies! 

Cale's chosen words for the door to his man cave. Ha.

This guy is all mine. 

Echo was Cale's favorite dog. In fact, before the accident, he was determined that Echo would be his when we moved from Ft Drum. After the accident and once home, he didn't seem to remember Echo as much as we all expected. I'm not sure if it was because we had Basil and that was a little confusing, or if memory was a barrier. Not really sure, but a couple weekends ago Echo had to be put down. We went over before she was taken in and spent some time with her. When they were about to leave, Cale suddenly was very worked up and emotional. It was a sad day for sure. Echo was full of really good memories for me...memories of a young man that I fell in love with. 

Cale works and works at this thing. He chooses a color and will try to get just one side. He'll work on it for awhile and then throw it down and say he's done...and then get back to it at another time. When one side was all yellow-it was a very big deal! 

Lots of goodies we're growing! 

Do you remember me writing about the days when Cale could hardly make it through a church service and eventually stopped going? Last year was tough, but to see the difference in even just this area since returning from 7E is incredible! Standing next to him worshipping every Sunday will never grow old...and sitting next to him watching him try to write questions he has during the sermon; oh my word. This was beyond a beautiful thing. We couldn't translate some of what he was writing but we were able to later discuss his questions we could figure out. He couldn't remember the topic or the background on them but knew they were his since he wrote them down! 

We went to a picnic in the park one Sunday night with a bunch of people from churches here in the Tri-cities. It may not seem like a big deal, but doing this before now would have not happened, or at least not have been a pleasurable experience. Thanking Jesus for all the little gifts He's given us! 

We went to the west side of the state for a super quick visit! We were able to visit family and Cale had a doc appointment. He loved the visit...but not the appt! All is good with his tumor though! No growth. 

I did a color run. It was a 5k and went a whole lot quicker than my last race! Haha! It was so much fun! Kylie (who works with Cale twice a week) ran it with me...and I haven't run since. Need to make it happen! 

I went to a concert with Mama in Spokane. It was fun to hang out with her and be silly together. We're pretty good at it. :) Peter Furler who was the lead singer of the Newsboys, Colton Dixon who was on American Idol, and then Third Day were the lucky guys to entertain us...and we had some really good seats! Fun night...

We took a little road trip and picked up my sweet-as-pie niece. She spent a little over a week with us that was packed full with, playing princess iPad games with Uncle Cale, riding camels, petting elephants, feeding a giraffe, visiting with great grandma, getting hair brushed by Uncle Cale and wearing crowns to Walmart, going to the park to play, getting nails done, eating at daddy's favorite restaurant,  and getting lots of hugs from Auntie. 

It was such a special week! She went home today and I miss her already! With suddenly having a hyper 7 year old around all the time, it was a bit of a shock to our systems, but Cale did awesome with her! I loved loved LOVED watching them together! Never enough time...


Time for a few randoms...

If you spend any time with Cale, you will most likely end up seeing pictures on his phone. And he will most likely show you over and over every time you see him. I totally love that he has his pictures on his phone and by using that tool, he's able to have his own memories and stories to share. Sometimes he gets confused with all the details and the stories change-but they're his. He loves to show pictures from archery because he loves archery. He loves pictures of scratch and taking them of people that we're hanging out with because it becomes his story and his experience to share! So, just may see them over and over...but I hope that you will enjoy it as much as I do! 

We've changed the name of our blog and the address to it! It was named Cale's Recovery and the address was (of course, I didn't need to tell you that since you knew it to get to this page...) and now the name is a Darling kind of life and the address is it's all set to redirect you and nothing else has changed! Cale let me know he didn't like the name at all because Cale's Recovery meant that he was sick and it shouldn't be because it wasn't his blog. After several conversations of me trying to explain, we decided it would be completely fine to just change it and no worries would need to continue :)
So...along with that, and because of the stage we're in, this blog will continue to be updates of our life and all that goes on with it, my babbles and struggles, and the journey the Lord has us on. Not as much focused on Cale and him getting better...but I kind of feel it's already been that way... :)
A Darling kind of life was what we both chose after trying to figure out what would best fit. What do you think? We like it! 

Before I finish up and move on with the day, I want to share something with you and ask that you would pray for us when you think of it?

When the accident happened, I was there-awake and experiencing every inch of road we were suddenly walking. I have had this constant communication with Jesus right next to me; every step. I've gone through a process where my heart has been molded and shaped and I've been able to hear from all of you the way our story has impacted you and encouraged you with whatever season you're going through. I've been able to meet so many of you; building special relationships. I've been able to step out of my bad days and see everything from a different light.

Cale on the other hand is just now starting to really understand that he's different. He's injured. This is a very different road that he's walking and suddenly becoming aware of. Because of his memory this is often even more confusing and difficult. We've had many conversations and have spent time praying together but those moments are always forgotten and need to be rediscussed. It seems that with me I was moving forward on this road with new sights always at hand helping me along, but with Cale, he's reliving the very same moment again and again. 

With many things, like the color orange for instance, some days if you ask if it's a good color he'll say yes, but other days he'll say, "eh, no." His likes and dislikes change minute by minute along with his thoughts and views. Some days God is good and sometimes he doesn't get Him at all (I think we're all like this-at least a little!) and some days everything is just peachy. 

At church on Sunday we discussed Job. That meant that most of the lesson discussed our suffering and our response through it and knowing that God is in control the whole time. 

Job has been a book that I've read many times and with reading it, I have been able to sit and write out everything that has been lost; parts of our marriage, our life, friendships, our dreams...and then I have written everything I've seen unfold because of who God is in our life. Cale was mostly on his phone the whole time we were in our group, but at the very end he turned to me "Why did I get hurt?" he asked. He wasn't upset but asked again, "Why am I hurt so bad? Why is my brain hurt?" I was trying to talk to him quietly and trying to help, but I could tell we weren't going to get anywhere. I think Cale knew too because he then asked, "does he know?" pointing to Chad. "Let's ask him!" is all I could think to say. So, Cale waited until Chad was done talking to someone else, plopped right down next to him and asked his questions. I stepped back and let them talk so I didn't hear how all the conversation went, but afterwards I asked if it helped and Cale said it did. A few hours later he didn't remember anything about it, but I know in that moment of confusion and question it helped talking it out with Chad.

Good days will come and go but "Why?" is a hard question that may never be answered and when you have a brain injury and want concrete answers...that doesn't sit well.  

I guess what we need prayer for is through this time of him becoming more aware, will you bring him before the Lord while he walks this new road before him?

I'm reminded of one of my favorite verses...

And I will lead the blind
    in a way that they do not know,
in paths that they have not known
    I will guide them.
I will turn the darkness before them into light,
    the rough places into level ground.
These are the things I do,
    and I do not forsake them.
-Isaiah 42:16


  1. Thank you again for sharing your life with us. It was wonderful to see all your photos! I so enjoy them. I loved the update and I LOVE the new name to your blog! It is fabulous and ohhhh so cute!! I think it fits you all perfectly! I love your new table...wish I had one like it...maybe someday! I noticed your aprons hanging and I have one like is pink with black swirls on it. You mentioned a tumor and that it had not changed...I did not know about a tumor. I must have missed that in old blog posts. Thankful with you that it has not changed!

    As far as Cale's question about "why"? I will really pray for you both about that, especially Cale. I know it is hard but I think the way I might have answered is that we live in a fallen, cursed world because of our sin (all our sin, not just one person in particular). In Romans 3:9-20 it speaks of our sin but in verse 10 it states that "there is none righteous, not even one...". Bad things happen because our world is in a fallen state. I don't think this side of heaven we will understand why certain things happen to certain people but none of us really deserve any blessings from God but in His mercy and love He blesses us anyway. Adam and Eve's sin in the garden brought the curse of God in Genesis 3:17-19 and we are still under that curse. Bad things are going to happen until our perfect, heavenly home is revealed. This part might be hard for Cale to understand but I do believe that God teaches people many things by allowing bad things to happen and also He receives glory when we seek him in the bad times. (God has taught me so much through your journey and strengthened my faith and trust in Him.)
    I am reminded of 2 Corinthians 12:7-10 (I only hope and pray that I will think this way when I am faced with a tremendous difficulty)--it reads as follows:

    7 "Because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, for this reason, to keep me from exalting myself, there was given me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to [a]torment me—to keep me from exalting myself! 8 Concerning this I implored the Lord three times that it might leave me. 9 And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast [b]about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. 10 Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with [c]insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong."

    His Grace is Sufficient. Amen.
    I continue in prayer for you. God loves you both so much!!
    Emily J.

    1. I do hope you know, Kathleen, that this was just a note of encouragement and I hope it did not make you feel badly in any way. I have been amazed at how you both have handled this tremendous change in your lives and I don't think I would have handled it nearly as well as you have. You have taught me so much about love and grace as you have cared for your husband. My main comment (even though it got lengthy) was that we are just living in a fallen world and, unfortunately, it is going to come with many, many trials. If only we all could deal with our trials the way you have been a true testimony! My father who is a stroke survivor has pondered the same thing as is all very, very tough. I just wanted to let you know that you are both treasured in God's sight and He is holding you each step of the way. I pray there was no offense taken to my previous was written in love.
      In Christ,
      Emily J.

  2. My Dear Girl, You know, when we have a wound, and it heals. There's a pulling and itching that goes on. When we train for...a hurts and takes a lot out of us. Yet, that training makes us stronger and gives us endurance for what's to come. My one son is doing a P90X training dvd. When he is done with a set, he hurts. Yes, it becomes easier after a time. If he misses more than one or two, it hurts worse than before and notices a loss of strength. If He keeps up with the grueling training, it's not so bad. He kind of enjoys it, even. Our life is a race. We are in constant training. Sometimes it hurts. Sometimes it just plain sucks. Yet we notice a change in how we deal with things as time goes on. This next statement may and may not help. Father saw this time with Cale before the beginning of time. He gave you a "normal" life to start with. Then He gave you a life gift wrapped up in an impossible situation. The only thing I know, is Father is LOVE, and all that comes to us HAS to pass through His hands before it reaches us....just like with Job. Well, two things I know. The second is that Father is very proud of you. He's saying this moment, look at Kathleen, look at Cale. SEE, they are coming through just as I planned. He loves you more than yu know. As to why does Cale have the brain injury, the same why was the blind man blind, to glorify God, and that men may see Him.
    I love you and am honored to be a part of your journey. Marion


    And I will lead the blind (those who can not see, who have no hope )
    in a way that they do not know, ( to places they have never been )
    in paths that they have not known ( on paths that may be scary, rough, hard,places)
    I will guide them. ( guides go before us ~ they already know what is there ! )
    I will turn the darkness before them into light, ( He will do it, he won't remove the darkness BUT he will change it into light by changing our perceptions , our focus, our hearts )
    the rough places into level ground. ( he will build up the places that are rough ,uneven and sinking to become level ground ~to stand on HIM )
    These are the things I do, ( Again He does it ! not us - we follow his leading , we obey and we choose to see Him as the ultimate guide )
    and I do not forsake them. ( even in the hard places He won't leave us )
    -Isaiah 42:16

    I so love this verse too Kathleen, because it reminds me over and over how much God knows my beginning middle and end and he says that he will be there through it all working it all for my good and his glory, what Marion expressed above is so certain, He sees you from the beginning of "normal" to the opening up of this "life gift" that draws you deeper and constant into him .... and in that place He makes the impossible becomes possible ~ love Job as well and just like with Job anything that comes to us must pass through the Lord's hands He had to give the okay for it, and sometimes that is the biggest WHY question and TRUST is the only answer we have, to trust the character of God, regardless if we understand . Love you both , love the new blog name and continue to pray for you - love to see you walk - NO RUN this out ~ and run you do with a huge smile on your face to the glory of the Father, I think that he takes great pleasure in your running , skipping , hopping, even when you stumble his smile is ever clear- He loves you ! He loves You ! HE LOVES YOU !!! (and so by the way do we ) (((()))))) Lots of good stuff here ~ glad I had a moment to read it ~ I think I told you long ago when Caleb was in the military and we were praying for him that the verse in my Bible where His name was placed was where God says he will make him a portal to show God's goodness and mercy I will have to look it up for the exact wording and reference but I always see this verse as exactly what God is doing - using you as a window to show himself to others :) Keep being transparent LOVE YOU !!!! Reenie


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