Monday, April 30, 2012

It was 12 years ago today that we said goodbye to my dad. I never called him Dad in my life, he was Daddy. Now I find myself hesitant to call him Daddy, to remember what that was like, what that meant, to have a Daddy.

He died at 52, of his first and only heart attack. It was a huge shock, he was one of those big invincible people. I don't cry over him anymore, maybe once a year or less, but the ache, the gap is always there. It's interesting. It doesn't work like sand on the beach, where time and water shapes it back, fills in the holes, different, but whole. You never get over losing a person, their place is never filled.

The first few years, I dreamed about him all the time. I would ask him questions about the computer, and he'd answer. In the dreams, he'd always be back, alive, just for a minute, but I knew he'd have to die again. Those were bad dreams, even though I got to see him. I don't dream about him anymore, but I still think, "I need to tell Daddy..."

I was the baby of the family, the last one of 5, and I was spoiled. "Not spoiled rotten," he'd say. "Just enough." The night before he had the heart attack, I tried on a bridesmaid dress at his house, for a friend's wedding. He said, "You look bee-youtiful." The next day, he called me because his computer was finally arriving by Fed-Ex and he wanted me to come see it. "I'll come over later," I said, busy with R2 and all his medical gadgets. The next time I saw him, he was unconscious. He never got off the phone without saying "I love you", so I'm sure those were his last words to me, my last words to him, even though I can't remember.

I miss him. I miss being Daddy's girl. Even if I talk my mom into marrying an ailing octogenarian millionaire, I will never have a Daddy on this side again. I hate that. But I believe in heaven now. When I get there, I expect to see my sons, spoiled just enough by my dad, all of them together.

poems about daddy

Thursday, April 26, 2012

I don't remember the first day I saw them. It must have been about 30 days ago. And now I might never see them again.

That first day, we rounded the corner and out of the corner of my eye, I saw him, half reclined across a camping chair, fedora askew, neck tattoos glistening in the sun. She sat primly on a velour ottoman, a cooler between them. "Hey!" I said to Richy. "There are hipsters on the porch!" That house has been abandoned as long as we've lived here, and the landlord had started offering free rent for someone who wanted to live there and work on it, putting up sheetrock, installing cabinets, etc. When he told me about it, something inside me wanted to do it, but then I remembered that the MOG and I sometimes stonewall who's going to replace the light bulb in the hall for WEEKS.

After that first sighting, I admit I had my doubts. The whole posture of the porch inhabitants was casual, confident royalty. There was no air of the common man, with his need to install cabinets.

not actual porch couch
Day after day, I passed by, and eventually I started slowing down, to see what they were up to now. Very soon, there was an old painted piano on the porch, another recliner, an infinite number of hipsters in relaxed posture. Sometimes there was a guitar. One day, I think there was a girl, playing a banjo. "I wonder who is working on the house?" I thought, still caught in the rat-race mindsets of the mainstream. They did not worry, sitting on the steps, gesturing with a pipe as the grass grew ever taller. A dog came to join them, sprawling across the porch near the upended bicycle, presumably there for repairs. At night, sometimes you could just see them lighting the single candle on the piano, and then settling into the chairs to read their iPhones, bluish light shining like a beacon of hope, of rest.

A week or two ago, I noticed a medium sized child sitting on the steps of the porch, steps that still needed to be stripped and painted. "Hey!" I said to Richy. "The hipsters got a kid!" I should take pictures, I thought to myself, because the tableau changes every day and it's totally fascinating to me, to the point that I slow way down and try to take it all in, even if there's a whole line of cars behind me.

Two days ago I passed by to find a yard sale of sorts, with the mostly-painted piano and a cacophony of furniture and clothing strung on makeshift racks around the yard. "Hey!" I said to no one, because I was alone, "The hipsters are having a yard sale!" When I came back by, there was a large man with long curly gray hair and a long beard, just your average neighborhood wizard, inspecting the goods. I wonder if he bought the banjo. I guess I'll never know. The yard sale was still going, late at night, a nearby car's headlights providing the light for no shoppers at all.

And then it was over. No chairs on the porch. No guitars. No girl in a vintage dress, curled up on the porch couch, sleeping in the afternoon sun. No shaggy dog resting by the Toms of a guitar player. No kid, looking bored, sitting on the cooler. Nothing. Just an empty shell of a house, no different than it was when they came, approximately 30 days ago.

I don't have a lot of regrets in life, but I regret not taking their pictures every day and making a viral Tumblr called Hipsters on the Porch. I regret that very much. Wherever you are today, chilling hipster friends, I hope you have the dog, and another banjo. Play on.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

I get in trouble a lot with my kids. Mostly the 2 middle ones, who talk and stuff. "I'm thirsty," they say, and I always say, "Nice to meet you, Thirsty, I'm Mommy." and then they scowl at me and say "NO JOKES." I was raised by a joker. I don't know if I ever had one conversation with my dad where he wasn't pulling my metaphorical leg a little.

So it is my natural bent, my heritage to mess with my kids. R2 actually understands it the most, somehow. We always say the humor section of his brain must not have been very damaged at birth. We can just look at him a certain way, or say something like, "Im gonna throw you out the window," and he gives us his huge shark-toothed grin. He's a funny guy, he plays jokes, too.

But the middle two are just figuring out humor. Toby loves Dilbert comic books and Garfield, Calvin & Hobbes, stuff like that, because Toby is 40. And he says stuff like, "This song is groovin." and uses figures of speech that, you know, Scott Adams or Jim Davis or Bill Watterson would say.

And Toby and Brynn make these jokes, these knock-knock jokes or whatever kind, and they're always pretty non-sensical, which makes perfect sense for their age. I struggle with doing a little comic critique, you know, some editing and restructuring to make their jokes actually funny. I'm pretty hands-off with them, creatively. I don't tell them what to draw or how to make a craft, I don't try to redirect their songs or stories, I don't tell them when they're actually making a lion roar when they are being a bear or that trees aren't purple, I just let them do their thing. But I find myself a little bothered by the not-being-funny thing.

Toby made his squirrel drawing tail-less at storytime today, for comedic effect, and then he put a thought bubble with "I LOST MY TAIL" in it, and then he thought it would be even funnier to have a second squirrel without a tail, and I actually tried to convince him to lose the second squirrel a couple of times, like some kind of storytime-art-stage mom. And then he showed the librarian, and she laughed and laughed at his creativity, and he looked at me all triumphant. I knew it was funny, okay?

It just should have had one squirrel, or the thought bubble should have said, "WE LOST OUR TAILS," which would have been more like a tragedy or a mystery than a comic, and also, that 2nd squirrel is definitely checking out the junk in the trunk on the 1st squirrel. Now, that's funny.

Monday, April 23, 2012

It's that time of year, where I embrace my homeschoolerness and attend the "convention". This time I went with my buddy Brooke, and she had babysitters for all our kids, which was super fancy and way easier than what I usually do for events like this. We had scored free admission to this Gigantor Homeschool Explosion Fest, and we just went to the book fair part of it, because neither one of us want homeschooling advice, because we're not broken down enough yet.

Right off the bat, we walk in and there are teenagers in full Shakespearean costume. It's an interesting thing: I would have totally worn that in high school, but now (and even then) I have this inner bully that kind of wants to beat them up. Not literally. But just... sometimes when I see teenagers doing kind of dorky stuff, I get this little sick feeling because oh my gosh I was such a dork. And also I was awesome and hilarious. But such a dork. And yet, I am stoked to sign my kids up for a theater program. I might need therapy.

When you go to events like this with a friend, you try to hang out together but different stuff sucks you in. Brooke spent a half-hour weeping over the blurbs on the back of the YWAM missionary biographies, and I wandered around and had conversations with awkward people, about a variety of things. Oh, and I spent a LONG time chatting with a librarian, because that's how I roll.

Now that I've settled on a model that looks more like unschooling, I'm less drawn to all the workbooks (although I will use some textbooks) and more drawn to the build-your-own-working-rocket or robot-picker-upper-thingy. And here's another dichotomy: the ultra-earnest young teenagers who explain this device or other stuff like it: on one hand, I know this is Toby in a couple of years, and his politeness and knowledge is super cool. On the other hand, I want to mess up his bowl cut and buy him some jeans.

I've talked about this before, and I imagine at some point it will be out of my control, because Toby is my dad, and my dad dyed all of his clothes purple (because he liked purple) and cut his own hair and got beat up every day at school and then went to college at 16. And Toby will do awesome stuff, and I will be super proud and maybe a little embarrassed.

Basically everyone I expected was there, the "Duggar" prototype, with the perm and the skirts, the "granola" family with the Birkenstocks and spotless khaki baseball caps, the Mennonites with the handmade dresses and bonnets, the "Who, me? I'm not homeschooled" teen girls in their rumspringa, wearing almost provocative v-necks and knee length skirts, and then us, people like us (homeschool/Christian school geeks who have learned how to fake coolness, or so we think).

Brooke wasn't going to buy anything, so she left with about 24 books. I didn't buy anything, because Imma be all up in the interwebs for my books, but I did score a free singalong CD to learn the 23rd Psalm and 1st and 2nd Samuel. I think I'll teach it to my kids and then set up a roadside stand with lemonade and gospel literature. And singing. Bible singing. Maybe haircuts.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Tristan had a couple of holes in his heart when he was born, and so he went straight to the NICU (smh: even when I adopt them they go to the NICU).  Then we had a cardiology visit when he was a month old or something and all the holes looked like they were closing naturally, so we scheduled a follow up for when he'd be 12 months. And we ended up missing that one, and then I just put the reschedule notice on my fridge and looked at it every day for 5 months. Quit judging, I take my other kid to the doctor like every 5 minutes for his wonky brain.

So eventually I took a half hour and made appointments, mostly for R2 but threw one in for Tristan also. And the MOG and I, we talk all the time, but it's usually like, "Why are there no groceries for ME?" and "Is someone going to put money in the bank?" and stuff like that, so usually I figure out he's leaving town because of the internet. "Richy Clark will be preaching at Kalamazoo Christian Brotherhood Fellowship and Drive-in Theatre for the ENTIRE MONTH OF MAY." And I say, "Wait... who? when? where?" but he's already on a plane and I'll have to piece the rest together via Google.

So of course he was elsewhere when this appointment hit and I gathered all my young and took them to the cardiology clinic. And I guess he's been home for a few months or something, because my crowd-control methods are super weak. I was leaving stuff in the house and not buckling the car seats in the right order and just not streamlined, not at all streamlined.

And then I was circling the parking garage, circling, circling. The power washer had like 20 spaces cordoned off, I object to that. The peanut gallery was keeping the questions going about why didn't I just park right there and why is there no sun in the parking garage and why didn't we have any water in the car and also did I know that Toby has mastered Club Penguin because he googled Club Penguin cheats and exactly why was I frustrated? And R2 is squeaking, really grumpy because we're at the hospital and he's not buying this whole "It's Tristan's appointment" deal.

So we get in there and it's a children's hospital and we go all the time and I never understand why everyone else's children are so very quiet. Mine are so loud. Like, think of loud and then think of loud in a fairly small room. Then multiply that by a gillion, and add the loudness of me harshly shushing like a Walmart mom. Like that. And then Tristan woke up, and he was like, hey, how can I break this place?

Finally they put us back in a room and stripped Trissy down to a diaper and gown, and he was all like Aw Heck No and refused to wear the gown so I could be the mom at the hospital with my baby in just a diaper. Then I bribed people with phones and empty promises and emptier threats to just sit still and for the love of all that is holy stop climbing on me. (side note: hospitals: it would be really great if you could like install climbing walls or obstacle courses or something in each office, so they would have somewhere to go away to.)

After 3 eons they took us back to the EKG and he resisted like an Occupier right before the pepper spray, and Toby and Brynn were taking the tech on a ride of learning, which kind of confused her  a little, because Toby had this analogy about blood flow and driving... anyway. Tristan's heart is fine, which I already knew, because of his continual athletic exploits and such. R2 jumped all the way to the car, giddy to have avoided his appointment by being super quiet.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

I have commitment issues. I mean, I'm good at being committed to my marriage, to my kids, that kind of stuff. But I have this other commitment-phobia when it comes to some basic grownup stuff. Like buying this house. That seemed so risky to me, marrying ourselves to a mortgage. But I love my house, I'm glad we married it. There's this itch in me, though, to get on the road, to live somewhere else, to go do something exciting. And when I say exciting, I'm talking about prayer and stuff, not so much tattoos and Harleys, although I would like a tattoo. But not a Harley tattoo. Been there done that.

And we're at this crossroad, with the band, with ministry, and our day-to-day life could change drastically, and the thing that is totally freaking me out is the idea of staying here, living in this house, getting more involved in our church. It would be less frightening to buy an RV and take our children around the country, doing prophetic face-painting and planting a church in the Grand Canyon or something. Seriously. (disclaimer: we will never do any of those things, that is just a crazy example. sorry if you would have come to our Canyon Fellowship or had plans to get your face painted like Aslan.)

I don't get it, exactly. I mean, I lived in one town for most of my life, went to the same church from age 4 to age 30 or something... I have no problem with being on time or paying bills or taking care of my children. It seems like a settled mommy life would just make sense. But I can feel my soul totally bucking at the idea, and I don't think it's just because I'm supposed to be a radical world-changer. I am, but I think my soul might need some discipline. Roots, maybe even. I kinda hate the idea of roots. So permanent. How boring would it be to be a tree?

The MOG is the same way, but he gets his wiggles out by flying around, doing music, riding in the van and such. Then he comes home and mainlines Advil and talks about doing something different, something crazy like sitting still. 

I'm figuring it out, okay? It's just one of those month-long "moments" in life where you get a clear look at yourself in a mirror and you say, wait a minute... that's jacked up.

Dadgum mirrors. 

Friday, April 13, 2012

Let me talk about crawfish for an undetermined number of hours, since typing these blogs typically takes me 2 days to write, between ER visits and toddlers spilling coffee down the stairs. (late breaking note: while I was typing this, Tristan pulled a CAKE off the counter. A CAKE. I wouldn't have even known, but he brought me some.)

in happier times
Crawfish, also known as crayfish or mudbugs, is like a mini-lobster. Only different. But you know the concept. Lobster, crab, crack the shell, extract delicious meat. Laugh at your spouse, who is looking extremely pale and horrified across the table, content with his $12 cheeseburger. It doesn't bother me, all right? It's food. You have to peel an orange, you have to dismember seafood. It tastes amazing, and I could buy it anywhere, when I lived in Texas. Oh, you didn't know I was from Texas? Yeah, I'm subtle about it, don't want to brag.

Then I moved here, where the "thing" is pricey BBQ that doesn't taste right. Every spring in KC, friends from TX start posting photos of their platters of steaming crawfish, with corn and potatoes. Even thinking about it now can bring me to tears... A couple of years ago, I got a hankerin, a bad hankering and I googled for local crawdads. All the links were for bait, y'all. It hurt me in my soul. I could have had some shipped, but a) I'm not a millionaire and b) I don't want to pay the extra shipping for the salmonella that would come with it. I gave up. Then I saw some measly little crawdads in the ice at Price Chopper. I bought them. I'm not proud of it, folks.

Those little Missouri/Kansas crawfish were awful. I mean, there was barely any meat at all, and it was tough, like chewing on shoe leather, whatever that is. I sat there with my little white paper package and I had to let it go. It wasn't an easy lesson to learn.

Then a couple of weeks ago, I was driving down a side road and I saw a big sign with a crawfish on it, and a lot more signs, with other creatures forbidden by the Torah. My heart leaped inside me. The building looked decrepit, which was a great sign. Restaurants in ruins often indicate that the attention is on the food, and not on 3-ply toilet paper and pesky health department regulations. The second good sign was that the parking lot was packed. Wall to wall cars and trucks. I caught all this in a glance.

I purposed in my heart to return. I have given it considerable thought in the days since. I knew I'd have to go by myself, because all of my friends have terrible taste in food, and there's no way I'm taking my kids with me, because they would eat all my food. I had a plan. I don't think you understand the energy I devote to thinking about eating. It is one of my greatest joys. Food. Ah, food, I love you so.

Yesterday on my way to pick R2 up from school in an emergency run, I passed that same restaurant again. It should not speak badly of my devotion to my child that I slowed a little to read the sign and get more info. And then I noticed: the cars in the parking lot had price tags. All of them. And the restaurant signs were faded and unused. It was a crushing blow to realize that my one hope was a used car dealership.

It's okay. I'll be okay. Someday.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

When I came home from Texas, the first thing I did was revel in the love of my family. The second thing I did was notice that our house smells like the bowels of hell. Now, the MOG did a great job with the kids, but I thought maybe the bathing schedule had gone awry, so I placed children here and there in tubs of scented water. Next I assessed where a diaper could have potentially been misplaced in a frenzy of parenting ecstasy, but I only found all the matches for the shoes I've thrown away. I took out the trash, and then I found the dishes. Problem solved.

The whole time, the MOG is following me around and reminding me that he does this every time he comes home. He travels around and stays in all these swanky houses, and then he comes in and looks around like, "How do we live this way?" which is always super well received by me after parenting 4 kids alone for 2 weeks. And of course, I always respond just like Jesus would, if he weren't sinless.

After I do the dishes and open all the windows and pray a cleansing prayer, it smells okay to me. But the seeds have been sown and I wonder, "Does my house stink? All the time?" I worry about this for several minutes, and then I remember Facebook.

But today, a week later or something, my sister is in town and she's coming over here, and I remember that my house might smell like a meth lab. So I decided to make a little homemade potpourri, with orange peels and honey and boiling water, because, come on. That stuff smells good. It was off to a promising start but then I forgot about it and it boiled dry and caught on fire. So now my house smells like a meth lab next to an burnt and rotting orange orchard (or whatever you call those. orange forest, orange grove. GROVE.)

Domesticity, I own you.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

We weren't fasting YET
"So we sent you on a roadtrip," you say. "And you give us a couple gas station vlogs and then disappear." First of all, y'all, chill. I've only been home for a day or so, and it was the weekend. So.

I walked 10 feet, she did 270 miles
Well, we had our plane tickets all booked and I was toying around with the idea of packing when we found out our flights were cancelled. The planes had hail damage. Sometimes, when I hear about planes crashing because they hit birds or being grounded because of hail damage, I question the wisdom of strapping ourselves into jillion-ton metal cans and trusting air to keep us afloat. But anyways. We ended up jumping in Brooke's Tahoe and heading out for an overnight journey. You can follow the roadtrip vids over on my youtube playlist.

The first day, I got to meet my sister as she was in the final stretches of her 270 mile walk from Houston to Dallas. You can read her account here . We both cried, and then she started walking fast, so we said goodbye. I am SO PROUD of what she did. She's a hero.

Bound4Life bloggers and the Chief
The Esther Call was intense. In a nutshell, it was 3000+ women praying for the ending of abortion. Many of the women on the stage and in the room were post-abortive. Their stories were horrifying and they were healing. I cried all day long. Listen: abortion is not just injustice against the unborn. It is injustice to women. It doesn't fix anything, it only destroys. If feminists truly cared about what was best for women, they would be flooding the streets to stop this violence being perpetrated on their sisters.

The most beautiful thing was to see the redemption of broken women, taking their pain and releasing it to God, and finding strength and victory in forgiveness. I watched the 39 walkers all day, and they are crazy strong. I was honored to stand near them.

Direct sunlight, don't judge us
I know that might sound like a bad weekend, what with the crying and all, but it was so healing. Sometimes I forget who I am, what I'm made for. I need to be reminded that I can swing a sledgehammer at injustice with my prayers, with my computer keyboard, even while a baby is standing on my lap and poking me in the mouth.

me and my steph, together again
AND I had a total blast with my friends, from Texas and KC. I don't think I've ever traveled with a group of just girls before. I found out I snore a little, I wear my jeans 2 sizes too large, and I need less sleep than most people. Special thanks to the daddies who kept the kids so we could go be a part, ESPECIALLY the MOG who did a terrific job, despite boiling hot dogs in my electric kettle.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Tomorrow I'll get on a plane with three of my good friends, winging our way to Texas for the Esther Call. The MOG and I have been involved, in various ways, with theCall for a long time, but this is the first one that is focused on women.

I started getting the heart of God for teen girls when the MOG and I became youth pastors at the ripe age of 17. I began to understand His love for them (and me!), and His desire for them to be who they were called to be. So often as women we get sidelined by everyone else, every voice coming at us, telling us who we are. I used to talk to my girls about a canvas that God was painting, and He knows where the picture is going, but other people come in and smear paint around, in the shape of what they think we're supposed to look like, and we keep all that input, and it gets all smudged and gray and confusing, because of all the voices.

We have to come to a moment where we let God get out the cleaner and just wipe away all that negative input- we have to hone our vision to see who we are to Him, how He sees us. Because you know what? God thinks you are GREAT. He can see through the big red X's you've put on your nose, or your arm flab, or your tendency to talk too much, or your past. He sees exactly where He's going with you. And it is going to look GOOD.

My sister has been on a historic trip with 38 other women, walking from the largest abortion facility on our side of the world to the courthouse where Roe v Wade was fought. 250+ miles in the sun and the rain, and yesterday, tornados. She and the other women have been touched by abortion, some post-abortive, others have lost siblings, and other ways. You can read about what they've been doing and why at Their trek ends at the Esther Call.

I watched some of the final videos they'll do on Leah's (my sister) blog and wept today. (Go read about her journey!) I feel a shift coming, and it has to come to women. We have to get the understanding that we are worth so much more than promiscuity and the lie that abortion helps women. Abortion hurts women. It only hurts.

We've got to take hold of the authority that we have inside, and we stand up for our sisters and say, "This stops NOW. No more stealing from my sisters. No more lying." It's time to roar at injustice.

If you can get there, join us for The Esther Call. If you can't, pray with us and join the webstream. It's a history-making day for women, and I am beyond blessed to be a part.

(Special MEGA thanks to Brooke's mom for sharing her air miles and the lovely Podqueen for providing our hotel stay, and to our husbands for holding down the forts. PS: Guys, please hold down the forts.)

Late breaking update: flight cancelled! overnight roadtrip for the win!

Monday, April 2, 2012

I woke up today thinking about... well, I woke up, thinking about sleeping. But then fairly soon after that, I started thinking about bedrest. I spent the majority of 2005 and 2006 in my bed, coked up on tocolytics. "Egads!" you're saying. "I had no idea she was a gadabout!" Listen, you. First of all, you're not British, so knock it off. Secondly, I'm not a gadabout or a rogue, tocolytics are drugs that try to stop people from going into labor. Since I usually go into labor right about when the morning sickness lets up, I needed a lot of them.

Terbutaline pump on my hip
So. I started this blog in July of 2005, because I had diagnosed myself with my 3rd case of preterm labor. My story has sad parts and happy parts, and I'm far enough from the grief now that I can write about it pretty lightly. At the time, my journals read like something you'd read in a college literature course. They were dark and fearful and at times, near suicidal. It was not easy. But I made it through, and I thought I'd talk about it a little, for anyone that might be in a similar spot.

Key 1: Listen to your body. I knew I needed to lay down. My OB questioned if it would help at all, but as I made it week after week with fewer and fewer contractions, she became very supportive. Eventually, labor kicked back up and she grounded me even further.

Key 2: Find peace. I had the blessing of having an in-house musician, the MOG, who quit touring and played the piano all day long. As long as he played and worshipped God, our house and my spirit would be at peace. Find music that soothes you, and don't watch suspenseful shows or read books that stress you out. You might even have to limit visitors if they cause stress. Think calm, peaceful thoughts. If you start to panic, lay down, take deep breaths, and pray. You can't control the outcome, but you can try to control your emotions.

Key 3: Don't borrow trouble. This is not the time to think about how many days you have to lay down, or what the outcome will be for your precious baby. This is the time to embrace this moment, this day, and deal with tomorrow when it comes. Journal and take pictures.

Key 4: Distract yourself. If you're like me, you have to find a way to kill a couple of months without exerting any real energy. I tell people get Netflix, order library books online (many libraries have a homebound service, but if yours doesn't, just send someone to pick up your online orders). Next, get a project. I'm the furthest thing from crafty, but I made a quilt by hand while waiting for Brynn. I spent hours a day. When I see that little blanket now, I know it helped her stay in the womb for weeks extra.

Key 5: Take care of yourself. Clean up and change clothes every day. It makes a difference. If you can, get a mini-fridge or cooler by your bed with snacks and drinks. Take the medicine they give you, they gave it to you for a reason.

depressed by Christmas on bedrest
In the end, there are no guarantees. When I did everything I knew to do, and Brynn (my 5th child) was born at 29 weeks, I knew I was done trying to have a complete pregnancy. But even as I went through labor and delivery of my 2 pound daughter, I had the confidence that I really, really tried. I would say now, having been through births and losses, any sacrifice was worth it. It was so worth it.

Next, I might blog to family and friends: how you can help support the bedrester.
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