Saturday, August 27, 2011

a story to tell...

{grungy but it was from today!}

"By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus' name and the faith that comes through Him that has given this complete healing to him, as you can all see."
Acts 3:16

Today we have tried to keep busy because today marked two years since our lives were forever changed! We went to my lil bro and dad's football scrimmage, the grocery store, home for my bro-in-law to put up a rail, swim and then have dinner with Ben and one of my good friends and her lil baby! It has been a LONG two years but what I know is that these past few years have been full of growth and best of all MIRACLES! Not many people can say that they get to see a miracle at work right in front of their eyes every day!
Ben and I will not give up on this fight for healing and restoration! We are both determined to beat this brain injury and get as far as we can! I beleive there are more miracles to come!
Like I said this journey has been a HARD and LONG one. The have been bad times, times of fear, anger, discontentment, emotions, jealousy, disappointments, longevity and so many other things the Ben and I have been through but we are making it and moving forward. We can only trust in Jesus and put one foot in front of the other just to get into the next day!
I am so proud and humbled by my man! Ben is strong and determined to never surrender to this. He works so HARD every single day and it blows me away. Yes, he too has his down times! We are human too! Last night was an emotional night for me just because I knew what today held. I was kissing him goodnight and he was kind of restless. I asked him if he was ok and he said, "yes, but are you ok?" I remember that he used to do this when we went to bed. It was another piece of Ben coming back to me and another reminder that God is still with us and is still working!
Yesterday we were floating around in our pool (we have been having beautiful weather) and we just started taking turns on what we were greatful to the Lord for...the list went on for quite some time! It was pretty amazing as we floated and looked at God's creation that reminded us of His promises!

We want to thank you for following us on our journey! Each comment you write and prayer that is said is so inspiring to us! We have so many followers both officially and those that just read! It amazes me every day! I wish that I could go to each of your blogs, comment and stay up with y'all but it is so hard! My inbox is full of amazing emails as well! Please continue to write us on here or snail mail and send us all those lovely packages...we like them too!! Please continue to PRAY for both Ben and I as we continue on to another year of recovery and miracles! Please continue to follow our journey...

I heard this song the other day and thought of our life as it has been so far. It did start with a kiss, well kind of, and it is not how we dreamt it would be. We want to know how it ends. We continue to have a story to tell. That story to tell is the work that Jesus is doing in our lives! He is the Healer, He is our strength, He is our Hope and He will get us through!

"Happily Ever After"
Let me riddle you a ditty, it’s just an itty bitty, little thing on my mind.
About a boy and a girl, trying to take on the world one kiss at a time.
Now the funny thing about, ain’t a story without it, but the story is mine.
And I wish you could say, that it ended just fine.
We all want to know, how it ends.

Oh, happily ever after, wouldn’t you know, wouldn’t you know.
Oh, skip to the ending, who’d like to know, I’d like to know.
Author of the moment, can you tell me, do I end up, do I end up happy?

Inhale, breathe steady, exhale, like you’re ready, if you’re ready or not.
Just a boy and a girl trying to take on the world, and we want to get caught.
In the middle of a very happy ending, let’s see what we’ve got, let’s give it a shot.
Let’s give it a shot.
We all want to know, how it ends.

Oh, happily ever after, wouldn’t you know, wouldn’t you know.
Oh, skip to the ending, who’d like to know, I’d like to know.
Author of the moment, can you tell me, do I end up, do I end up happy?

We all have a story to tell.
Whether we whisper or yell.
We all have a story, of adolescence and all it’s glory.
We all have a story to tell.

Oh, happily ever after, wouldn’t you know, wouldn’t you know.
Oh, skip to the ending, who’d like to know, I’d like to know.
Author of the moment, can you tell me, do I end up, do I end up happy?

We all have a story to tell.
We all have a story to tell.
We all have a story to tell.
We all have a story to tell.
He is We

Where we were...
August 27, Georgia.
August 27, California
Today we are home and trying to live the life where we are now!
Again, thank you for your love, support, encouragement and prayers! You all truly are a blessing to Ben and I!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

the determination continues...

"When the world says, "Give up," Hope whispers, "Try it one more time."
~Author Unknown

"Perseverance is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you already did." N.Gingrich

I cannot help but rave about Ben. Although his progress may seem slow to both of us it doesn't mean that his courage, determination and strength to get better! He continually asks, like I have mentioned it before, "when am I going to get out of this situation, when am I going to be my old self again and I just want to walk on my own again?!" I don't have the answers for Ben although I wish I could. I too would like to have these answers. But what I do know and tell Ben all the time is that he is amazing, he is strong, he is a man, I love him, I respect him, I am SO proud of him, I see his hard work and so does God. I also tell him not to give up, to keep on going strong! Ben of course says that he will never give up until he is 100% and then some! I am so proud of him!

A few things (videos) I wanted to share with you on just some of the things that Ben has been working on! Before I do that here is a bit of his therapy schedule.
Mondays - Combination of (ST)Speech Therapy (1.5 hours) and (OT)Occupational Therapy (2 hours)
Tuesday - (RS)Rehab Specialist (2 hours at gym in the morning) (PT)Physical Therapy (2 hours in the afternoon)...afternoon may change
Wednesday - Combination of ST (1.5 hours) and OT (2 hours)
Thursday - same as Tuesday
Friday - Combination of ST (1.5 hours) and OT (2hours)

ST and OT come 2 days each and go between M,W,F...
When Ben is not in therapy he is kept busy by me, has massage appointments, we are running errands and getting some rest! Busy, busy, busy!

Tree squats


(yes, the landing was a tad rough but this was a good one!)


So, my mom got Ben into playing Sorry when she stayed with him a bit ago. This is a very good game for Ben and so I pulled it out the other day and we played a few. I have to say that I did win two times (no I didn't cheat, I was nice and yes I am competative) but the second game was super close as you can see in the bottom photo!
I text my friend the first photo and she said she was rooting for Ben! When I told him what she said he responded, "good, cuz I'm in a bind!" Hence the second photo! I was thrilled that Ben realized this and that he was able to use new verbage! :)

Seriously I think I am going to buy stock in Nature Valley's Oats and Honey granola bars!! Ben is addicted to them! Every time I ask him if he needs something it is always a granola bar! He liked them pre-accident and the liking continues! I guess I forgot how much he did like them! Ben likes them to the point that if I give it to him with the wrapper he will eat it and then dump all of the crumbs into his mouth...same as if I break it up and put it in a container for neatness! The crumbs always go in the mouth...just like he aways used to but again I forgot! :)

Good thing Costco sells these bad boys come in a box of 96 rather then the general stores box of 12!

Awwww, maybe another Ben favorite item I may buy stock in is these bad boys...

Again, thanks to Costco for selling a huge box with three individual bags instead of the small bags in the regualar store! Ben even wrote a song about it! I have him remembering the first few lines and I am sure the rest will come! All you Ranger boys should know what I am talking about when it comes to his goldfish!

The race is not always to the swift, but to those who keep on running. ~Author unknown, in reference to Ecclesiastes 9:11, "I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all."

Saturday, August 20, 2011

the chair...

Last week I was challanged by the Lord to fast and pray for a specific time. I had never fasted the lenghth I did and at first was not willing to accept the challange and the asking to do so. But I had a change of heart and did. There were specific things I was praying for and wanting answers and direction.
I will say that I didn't get alot of answers but I got alot of peace and the reminders that God is always with us and that He knows our every thought, desire and hope. I was reminded of this in an amazing way!
It was on the Monday of my first day of fasting and I moved one of our dressers into our master bedroom closet. The plan was to open up the room more for a chair. I think there is something so peaceful about a chair in your own personal opinion! Anyways, I went to Fred Meyer to where I had seen a chair I wanted and they were sold out. I looked all over online only to find out that they were all to expensive. The last place I looked and actually put in my shopping bag but did not purchase was Target. I just couldn't sufice the almost $200 to put a single chair in a rental house. I dropped the subject for now but still really wanted a chair!
The next day I had a dentist appointment and on the way home saw a chair on the side of the road with a free sign on it. I figured I should stop but kept driving. I went into a turn lane but then got back in my lane. Well, I finally decided that I should at least check it out!
Well, I drove into the driveway and thought this thing is going to be heavy! I knocked on the door hoping someone would be home to help me lift it into the back of Ben's massive truck! Of course they were not! So, I lifted up the back to see just how heavy it might be and to my surpise it was light! I heaved it into the back of the truck and took off towards home!
It is not a brand new chair but it is the style that I love! The wood needs to be painted and it needs to be reupolstered for sure. It is worn and tattered but with a lil TLC it will be good to go.

A couple things that this chair taught me...or the Lord did through the finding of this chair.
1. The Lord knows my every thought. I never prayed for a chair but just thought about it. I thought about it, pursued it and then let it go. The Lord didn't forget about it even if it was something as simple as a chair for our bedroom! It just reminded me that He cares, He loves, and He is in control. Jesus knows our every thought and is faithful and loving enough to remind us that He is here...always!
"The LORD knows our thoughts, that they are but an empty breath." Ps 94:11

2. I think of myself as a project. Some days I am tattered, dented, my finish is off, my fabric/body is worn down...
The Lord is there to look after me. He gives me a lil paint job of some extra love, a new coat of hopefulness, He fills in my dented flaws...HE IS ALWAYS THERE!
“But now, O Lord, You are our Father; we are the clay, and You our potter; and all we are the work of Your hand.”Is 64:8

So, although I didn't think I got answers I did...just did in a different way! I know I will get the answers and healing that we prayed for when they need to come but for now the confirmation, love, hope and another dose of faith will see me though for some time!

I also got a good smile this week...this is an absolute answer to prayer!

On my last blog post I posted some things that I got out of a scripture I read! A council member in our church put it together in a picture and I thought it was amazing and wanted to share it!

Just a few good randoms...

We made freezer jam together...

We made amazing smoked gouda cheese and grilled onion burgers...

"Once God has spoken; twice have I heard this: that power belongs to God."
Psalm 62:11

"Trust in the LORD forever, for the LORD GOD is an everlasting rock."
Isaiah 26:4

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

the joys of disappointment...

"Expect nothing and accept everything and you will never be disappointed." L. Overmire
The definition of disappointment is: The feeling of sadness or displeasure caused by the nonfulfillment of one's hopes or expectations.

Have you ever been disappointed? So disappointed that you are stuck in a rut? I think that is Ben and I right now and it is not so fun! This I know is not a place where I want to be or stay but I am here. What am I disappointed in...well, there is a list! Our disappointment is in where we are in life right now, people, unkept promises, lack of babies, dreams not being fulfilled, therapists, relationships, our love, people's choices, and its disappointing to have to hear your husband say, "I have a brain injury but I am not stupid!" and the list goes on. For awhile I have let these disappoinments get to me whether I can do anything about them or not.

It is not fair to me that we are in this situation. I don't like it and never had. I am not happy that Ben and my dreams (that the Lord put in our hearts) are having to be put on hold. I don't like it that Ben cannot work and cannot to what he so loves to do. I don't like to see him struggle with just the simple of tasks. I am disappointed in God, I am disappointed in myself. But this has nothing to do with God, it has everything to do with me and where my heart is right now!

Places have disappointed us, people have disappointed us, situations have disappointed us, life has brought disappointments and the list goes on! I can tell you one thing though in spite of all this that Jesus doesn't disappoint. I don't understand what He is doing or what He is up to, I may not like it (which I don't), I may not agree but I can say that He doesn't disappoint. In knowing this it doesn't mean that I haven't struggled. I have wrestled with the scripture, "Is anything to hard for the Lord?" Gen 18:14 The answer is no but at the same time alot of questions come with that. If nothing is to hard for Him why has He not healed my man completely? If nothing is to hard for Him why is this dragging out? If nothing is to hard for Him then why oh why did He not stop the truck that hit us? This to me is disappointing but then again I go back to the fact that God doesn't disappoint, nothing is to hard for Him. What it comes down to is my heart. God doesn't disappoint me in things, I do. Jesus doesn't make things to hard, I do!

In my frustrations of being disappointed and feeling far away from the Lord I was in the Word the other night and we were doing our devotions together. The title of the devotion that day was Walk With Me. It focused on Matt. 11:26-12:21 but more specifically on Matt. 21:28-30 which says, "Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to Me. Get away with Me and you'll reoover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with Me and work with Me-watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with Me and you'll learn to live freely and lightly." (The Message)
In the devotion I was instructed to find words or phrases that stood out to me. I also read the NLT to see what I could pull from it as well...
-come to Me
-all of you
-recover your life
-walk with Me and work with Me
-i am humble and gentle
-watch how I do it!
-take My yoke

In this time this is just what I needed to read and hear. It comes at the perfect time. When I read the words of Jesus it takes away the disappointent, it takes away the unfairness, it melts my heart and puts things back into perspective! Later that night when I was getting ready for bed a song came on that I have not heard forever. It was instrumental but I knew the words and they were do what I needed to have running through my mind!

It is the old hymn Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus...

O soul, are you weary and troubled?
No light in the darkness you see?
There’s a light for a look at the Savior,
And life more abundant and free!

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.

Through death into life everlasting
He passed, and we follow Him there;
Over us sin no more hath dominion—
For more than conquerors we are!

His Word shall not fail you—He promised;
Believe Him, and all will be well:
Then go to a world that is dying,
His perfect salvation to tell!

Life does suck right now for Ben and I. I don't like where we are at and the fact that we may be stuck in life and the unknown but one thing I will continue to do is turn my eyes upon Jesus because He doesn't disappoint, He is capable, and nothing is to hard for Him.

This post may be all over the place but it is where we are at this point and I just had to get it off my chest. I have some soul searching to do and some heart work to continue but that is life! I am holding on to my Jesus and to my man!

Ben's prayer tonight...
"Lord, thank you for having me in this sitution. It is hard though for me and Katie. Don't turn your back on me. Heal my body. Help me through this situation."...and a few other things...

"I’m finding that when I’m at the end of my rope, I should tie a knot, hang on, and swing!"

Monday, August 15, 2011

random doings...

There have been alot of fun things that we have been doing in the past few weeks and things that Ben has been doing in therapy! I know, totally random and not so organized post but that is how life is sometimes around here!

Here goes...

Ben and I were finally able to take out his boat! He couldn't be a happier man in that moment!

ben and his ot put together a pool...

we babysit some of the neices and nephs...

we go to the fair...

ben does full depth squats...

ben does tree pull-ups...

i get a fabulous view of seattle from a bathroom at a b-day party...

ben attempts a sling shot and almost breaks a window...

we went camping with the fam and the kids liked our cabin...

we fall asleep at 6pm after getting home from camping...

my bros and dad were in our highlighted in our local newspaper and they came to our camp site to photograph them**...

and today ben pretty much made a graham cracker crust for me (he followed my directions) to make a strawberry pie...

and we go on swagger wagon rides...

so, yes lots of randomness but all good randomness!
just realized the graham cracker pictures are all out of order but I am to tired to go back and switch them all!

**you can find the newspaper article HERE

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

last days in ga...

Caution...many photos are on this post!
So the last few days were alot of fun and relaxing!
Thursday morning we were up and at em to get on post. Today was the day for the Change of Command ceremony. We had to be there by about 0830 and I think we got there and parked by about 0840 so we didn't do to bad!
The Change of Command ceremony is where they change regimental Colonels. One we knew was going out and another that we didn't know was coming in. It was a great ceremony. Today was the day that Ben was required to wear his uniform. He has not put it on since the day before the accident when he was at work. It has been in storage here in WA so it wasn't accessible and there was really no need for him to wear it. I have to say that Ben looked handsome! The pride that showed on his face was amazing...he is so proud of what he gets to do and so wants to get back to it!
The ceremony at one point had them saying the Ranger Creed. I have posted it before but I will post it again at the end. He stood tall for this and said it with all his might just like the other Rangers were doing! What was cool about this time is there was a different injured Ranger who led a stanza each. Ben was not used to repeating it so he jumped ahead in some places!

The rest of the day was getting lunch from Chick-fil-a (oh how I want one now) and swimming! Ben swam under the water, wrestled with my bro, floated around, did pull-ups on the diving board and did so many things compared to his swim on Monday! Thursday we went to dinner at our friends parents house! Ben had requested steak and that is what he got! He LOVED it and I must say I did as well! Super yummy! Ben was so tired from all the activity he had for the day and so he was off to bed!

There are two sweet lil men that I finally got to meet! I had seen photos of both but got to finally hold them! First I met Jack on Wednesday night at Starbucks and then lil Finley on Friday morning when I went out to breakfast with his mama! Jack has 3 older sisters and Finn is a lil brother...they both get alot of love but I had to give those sweet cheeks get some sugar!

{meet jack ryan}

{meet finley darren}

Friday afternoon was more pool time and relaxing. We had thought about going home this day when we were putting traveling plans together and decided to stay an extra day knowing that the week would be busy. I am so glad we stayed this extra day!
We had a small gathering of friends which was super fun! Ben and I enjoyed seeing them all was the first time they had seen Ben since the hospital in Atlanta!