Sunday, August 2, 2015

Ecuador and MeKenzei

Ecuador seemed out of reach last summer. MeKenzei had been injured in cross country season and her running career was over. I know that was super heart breaking for her, she loved to run. I have watched her over this past year work very hard in school. Struggling to stay in the top ten percent of her classes. There were so many late nights, much more than Jakob ever had as a 10th grader. She had trouble remembering things, she has trouble staying focused, she has trouble being run down constantly. Her body just doesn't hold together like it used to. I see her frustrated, confused and alone. She tries to hard to not let her pituitary and endocrine glands get the best of her. Sometimes its hard for her to make the best food choices and I know she sees me nagging when I remind her to eat something good, drink more, sleep more. I am so proud of her for working so hard in school, for selling eggs to raise money for her trip. I am thankful to all those that donated the last two years to make it possible. She raised $1900 of the $2300 that was possible.
I know she will face some tough decisions next year with church. It is hard to work in time for youth leadership and band when you have to study twice as hard to get the grades to stay at the top. I have taken an active role in her schooling. Sometimes its like taking the classes with her. I have had to help with reading and notes and sometimes just sitting there to be moral support. I am so thankful for this time together. How lucky of a mom am I to be so active in their lives. It is exhausting at times but I am eternally grateful for the amazing children that they are. For the fact that they continue to fight, grow and love who they are despite their challenges.
I am thankful for this trip and the week that she will be gone with some amazing students. I can't wait to hear all the stories, see the journal she will keep and see the person that will be molded from this situation. It is so easy to get caught up in the troubles of teenage life. The girl drama, the hurt, the lost friendships, the disappointment, the desire to have more and be more. This week she will see real life, the life that is so much less than what we have yet so much more.

Catching up from Time Away from Blogging

Sometimes you have to step away in order to see more clearly. I had to take some time off from blogging it seemed like we were in the middle of so much chaos and I needed to take something off my schedule. We went from such a busy Senior Year with Jakob to constant doctor appointments and medical situations with Zekaryah. I think the hardest situation is truly not knowing what is going on. I never know what will activate one of his episodes. The neurologists are convinced he is not having seizures, the heart doctor can't find any problems. We decided part way through the year during spring break to pay a crazy amount of money out of pocket to go to a functional medicine doctor/chiropractor. While I was relieved to have a few answers it really isn't something that works with school. They were given supplements that cost a fortune because insurance does not cover them, they also cannot be administered at school because they are not FDA approved. The kids were not even convinced that they really were helping so they decided it was money being wasted. I felt like they did seem to feel better but when they are strong willed teens at some point you give in a little.
We have made major changes with food in the house. I see that has been a hard adjustment but for the most part it isn't too bad. Its probably hardest on my oldest because items like chips, crackers and cookies are not part of our pantry anymore. Its definitely difficult money wise. I can't believe how expensive it is to constantly keep fresh produce on hand.
So the bottom line is that Zekaryah potentially has an endocrine gland issue. It doesn't produce or distribute correctly. His heart stopped at camp this year. I think that has conversation in our house changing. He told me this summer that he is secure in the knowledge that he will go to heaven. I never thought much about that part of life with him.
Mekenzei is having issues with her endocrine system as well, although her main issue is her pituitary gland. I cannot believe how much that does in our bodies. We are using oils and diet at this time to try and help them. They seem to really be listening to their bodies and learning the signs of when they need more rest, food and what oil to use to feel better.
 I can't believe how much they have both grown in the Lord through this experience. MeKenzei wanted with all her heart to go to Ecuador to minister to others. Zekaryah decided he will try to help raise the money for both of them to be able to go next year. I see their involvement in church becoming a constant in our schedule. They participate in band, student ministry and children's ministry. Sometimes I find myself gripping because the church sees them more than I do. I feel bad for those times. I found myself telling them they can't live at the church. I had to step back and evaluate my attitude. I should be thrilled that they want to serve and volunteer. I am interested to see what next year holds. Zekaryah will be back at running for Cross Country again. Mekenzei will be taking 6 AP courses- a very heavy load, her only fun class will be choir- which really still is work. I am super thankful for family and friends who have prayed for us this past year. Prayer is what helped us, especially me, get through some very dark places.