Saturday, October 29, 2011


What a word that is. It has been on my mind a LOT lately. Probably more than that of an average person. It has been on my mind because I have a 92 1/2 year old grandmother that I watch age on a daily basis. When I check on she still going to be breathing, is always my first thought! I've gotten over being freaked out about checking on her...I just ask God for peace and calm and sometimes I have to ask that several times a day!

She had an episode the other day that her heart rate dropped so fast she had a seizure and her mouth and nose turned blue. I knew something was going to happen, I was just unsure as to when in the day. I now believe that was God giving me the calmness and peace I needed for that moment in time. My mom was with us as well as my hubby when it happened. She came around on her own after about five minutes. We were told we do not need to take her to the emergency room as the fix would be a pace maker...and she does not want any heroic acts done to keep her alive...

So we wait for God to direct our steps for the next move. I have talked a lot about my grandmother in several posts...maybe? She consumes a lot of my day, it used to be worse as I would try to do everything I could to see to my grandmother's happiness. Don't judge me, I know that it is up to each individual and their happiness...but I guess I was/sometimes still do think about how her life has changed over the last seven years...moving twice and having three kids added to her family and all the changes that happen when you get old...and none of them good ones either. So sometimes my grandmother is a WEE bit crabby...but can I blame her? No, not really. She also has gotten very anxious...oh my! Learning to deal with that as well. So many things to think about and the bottom line is mortality.

Another thought about mortality is the fact that my daughter has a disease that will most likely be the reason for her death. There is no cure for Cystic Fibrosis a lung disease that she was born with. People ask if we knew she had it when we adopted her and the answer is yes we did. Some say then you knew what you were getting into by adopting a child that will die. (OH yes, we have had several people over the fours years she has been ours say that to us.) God gave us Kristina and everything that makes up who she is! I do not know how long on earth I will be able to put my arms around Kristina and whisper in her ear that I love her...praying that God will let that be for a long time!!

She has been sick for about three weeks and missed almost two weeks of school because of it. Every single time she coughs, my insides just shake a little. Sometimes I sob when I hear her suffer. I get concerned about how much damage is happening because she gets sick. Not obsess about whatever it is that we can do to help her...but her mortality is always on the back of my mind...God keep her healthy, but he really doesn't have to listen to me...he has plans for my daughter that I don't know anything about and maybe her will take her to heaven at a young age.

But whenever it is I know that she will be dancing with God in the arms of Jesus! Kristina knows about God and knowing who Jesus is and having him live within her. She knows that God sent his son, his one and only son, to die for us so that we may live in heaven instead of suffering in hell for all eternity. The one lesson I can take away form all of this is I can rejoice in the fact that both my grandmother and daughter know Christ as their savior and knowing the fact that they will be together in heaven some day!

Monday, October 10, 2011

2 years and 4 days = Jovan...
4 months and 4 days = Srecko...

(Started this two days ago)Yep, Friday was Jovan's gotcha day and it was Srecko's been in America day. Mommy had the HUGEST headache I have ever had and still have a little one today! Crying did NOT help me! :) We had chocolate for their celebrations and lots of hugs! :) They both feel like they have been here forever!! We waited for them for so long...and we saw God at work and actually see why we had to wait and ALL the miracles that surrounded their adoptions.

Jovan, what can I say about him? He is a cheerful, kind, gentle, funny, sweet and beautiful little boy!! Actually at nine his is getting OLD! :) He came home in 12 month size pants and now is almost into 24 months. Tops are more like extra small or 5 toddler. Small package but HUGE personality!! He LOVES fire trucks and can't stop talking about them. This year we went to a fire station for an open house which was the day before his birthday...worked great! Then we had a small birthday party for him. He thought it was great!!! It was his second birthday with us! :)

He knows that God gave him a special package with his body and we try really hard to make sure he can do the things he wants. Now he gets it that he will never be able to be a fireman...that was a HARD thing to see him understand. But, know we are working on maybe seeing if he could be a 911 operator. Which also helps him remember to speak slowly and clearly, so that's a bonus! :) School is something he loves and is doing okay, not up to peer standards but is really trying hard! Wants to drive a monster truck, but we have yet to figure out how that would work...but that is all him and he has to get a job and buy it himself. Another positive reason to do well in school! :)

Speaking only for myself, I am SO thankful that God has blessed us with Jovan!!! I will NEVER EVER EVER forget the moment that I fell in love with him!! And to wait for one and a half years to adopt him was so HARD!!!! I posted that story here. What a wonderful gift from God!

Now on to, how he has changed in four months!! Speaking English even in sentences that are pretty long and appropriate!! He is such a blessing to our family! And his giggles are very contagious!! He lights up a room with his smile! School is something he loves and is trying very hard to read...he is getting his numbers very well and his colors! Cars are his most favorite toy to play with and he loves creating and building things as well. Outside he loves dirt and swinging...who wouldn't? Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are his favorite food! Loves to help in the kitchen and other chores.

I was thinking about when I first saw him on the play ground at the orphanage four years and five months ago. So sweet and calm...just wanted to hug him. Played by himself most times...riding toys were his thing to do. At that time he had a family committed to him...I was so happy for him!! Such a beautiful little boy! And then we saw him almost two years ago to the day...he was still the same little boy, he played with Jovan and my hubby a lot. And again he had another family committed to him, so I was happy that he would have a mommy and daddy!! Little did I know that we would end up as his family all those years later. One can question God...but God's timing is perfect and we believe matter what and no matter who says different!

Saturday is Srecko's first American birthday with a family!! Praise God!!! We are just having a family party as he sometimes gets a little overwhelmed with a lot going on. I have had his gifts for a very very long time!! He understands and knows about birthdays...we showed him on the calendar when it it is really close!!! He is having a cars like the Disney movie cars...I ordered a cake and need to run and get the decorations. Auntie is getting balloons so it should be great!! Well have lots to do...fall cleaning and decorating! Fun! Grilling steak for dinner!! Have a blessed day!

Monday, October 3, 2011


Who falls under that description? Well if you are a person they would be old or aged. If it was a machine it would be showing signs of age. In this case I am going to be talking about a person. I posted a little/lot about this person here. And I am still working on that and now more issues have arisen. So we try to keep moving forward.

If I put myself in my grandmother's shoes I think I would die! I can not imagine chronic pain day after day after day ALL day long. We have tried many different drugs and therapies...but none too successful. Her mind knows it can do things, but her body doesn't cooperate. She has been a HARD worker all of her life up until last year she helped plant in the garden. The tv does not excite her, although an occasional movie will. It is hard for her to read her Ukrainian newspaper or parts of the Bible printed out in large print. Every day is a struggle for her.

With her struggle also comes along with my struggle. She sits and I watch her sit and try hard to find things to do even if they didn't need to be done in the first place...things like that. Boy, some days I just want to say I don't have anything for you! But, I keep looking. Some days I just sit and work around her...talking to her about the past (she has long term memory not short) and also talk about my daughter Kristina. My grandmother thinks that Kristina is her little princess and just adores her! I try to keep her mind healthy by making it think and work.

I will not tell a is HARD work!! Harder work then I have done in my life!! Some days I have to beg God to help me even want to help her. I love my grandmother more then anything. She taught me about hard work and cooking traditional Ukrainian meals and about giving and sharing. I like to think that some of who I am I learned from my grandmother. So struggling to want to help her makes me feel so many different things.

Lately she has gone down hill as far as her memory goes and also having to have me home. If I go anywhere...that is with my mom watching her she gets anxious and makes herself sick. So I do not make plans to go anywhere. Church on Sunday is a set time every week and my grandma thinks that a woman that comes to watch her goes by the name Mary. Which her real name is Ann, my mother!!! We don't try to correct her because she wouldn't get it anyway.

Other things have changed as well, she get CRABBY really quickly. Even when I am having a nice conversation with her. Almost like a split personality...and it isn't pretty!! She knows that she needs to leave and take herself to her room where she can calm down. And she does that most of the time but a few times she has had the strength to throw things in her room. No breakables are in there, so she is safe that way. But you know it is sad that it happens. I do smile however...just because it is a 92 year old having a bad a temper tantrum. But not funny because that is what happens to her. I am just matter of fact now with it and I just direct her to her room. It is becoming a normal occurring situation.

When I look at my life I am like a two sided coin. One is a mother of three children wonderfully and fearfully made by God!! And the other is a caregiver of an elderly person. Some days they make me dizzy, like if you stood a coin on it's side and spun it around...hey that's me!! And I wonder so many things...too many to mention but like she wants to go to heaven she is tired of suffering so why doesn't God just take her? Why did God let me have my kids now while I am taking care of my grandmother? Am I doing the right thing with her or should I try something else? And the list can go on and on.

On the days when I get down thinking about all the things I can't do and how I feel trapped I have to remember that my grandmother is going through the same thing. My mom often reminds me about looking for something good in the situation...oh man is it hard, but I can find them I really can!! God is teaching me patience and perseverance... hard lessons I thought I learned while we were adopting. Man, I hope I learn the lesson soon!

Something happened to me a few weeks ago...I was so sad and cried so hard I thought my heart was going to fall out of my chest!! And I felt like I could not reach matter what and couldn't understand it. People would pray for me and I would feel such peace, but when I prayed it didn't seem to do anything. I cried out to God and begged him to show me what was happening! Well, the word forgiveness floated across my heart. What? Forgiveness for what, then God showed me that I had resentment in my heart towards my grandmother. Wow, I about died...I never thought I had that in my heart, I felt bad that I did. God laid that on my heart and I asked for forgiveness from God and I feel like a new person!!

God really knows everything...even things that you don't know you feel. It's like God has helped by filling up my patience and perseverance buckets...I am much calmer, well actually peaceful. I don't take the negative actions and words spoken by my grandmother to my heart...I have God's protective shield in front of me! Thank you God for that! In the of book of James in the Bible God brought the first chapter to my attention again! It talks about counting all of our joy when we go through a trial or a season as some people have called it. Joy? Wow, I can do that because I have been practicing!! Insert smiling face here!! It really changes you attitude about negative situations!!

Don't get me wrong, I still struggle with this a LOT...but if I focus on the positive and God, I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!! That verse is in Philippians chapter 4 verse 13. Yep, just tell yourself that and make sure you have a clean heart...asking God to forgive you or show you what you need forgiveness for. I am thankful that I still can care for my grandmother and my children know her! But being elderly is HARD! But praise God I have a few years left before that is me! :) See trying to be positive... Next time you face a trial I urge you to try to think of a positive thing about it. Even a teeny tiny thing!!

Saturday, October 1, 2011


We had Srecko scheduled for surgery on Friday. Along with that accompanied prayer! LOTS of it! Should he have surgery so soon? He has been home about 4 and a half months. There were a couple of things that needed to be taken care of, so we felt okay about that decision! I wasn't really nervous, just wish we could communicate with him so he fully understood what was going to happen to him. Prayers for peace and the surgeons that would work on him for guided hands.

How did God answer you ask? Well, we got there with OUT one single problem even though there was road construction. We did not have to wait long for extra anxiety for Srecko. And at home my mom said the morning school routine was easy and peaceful!

But I think what the greatest and most wonderful answer to prayer was the fact that one of the anesthesiologist spoke Serb/Croatian. Srecko understood her and seemed to relax. She said she would be there when he went back to the OR and also when he woke up. Which she was! Only God could answer prayers that way...knowing exactly what we needed and more importantly what our son Srecko needed!

I thank everyone who prayed for us and give praise and glory to God for his answers!!

Here is after surgery...pretty wiped out but still peaceful!!!