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About Eric’s Wife

Some may say I am a "Stay at home Mom," but that is not even close. I am Eric's Wife. I have exhilarating strokes of genius, followed almost immediately by paralyzing pangs of self doubt and, for whatever reason, here is where I blog about it - warts and all. I serve a merciful God with a clumsy hand and at the end of each day I go to sleep thankful to be His servant and Eric's wife.

The Best Shoes I Ever Got

January 7, 2014

It’s a long story and one that I’m sure I’ve shared before, but I was always certain that I would one day see the last of Multiple Sclerosis.  How I came to have that faith is the long story.  I am thrilled to get to now share the latest development in my healing.

I had MS for 18 years, diagnosed at age 17.  When I was 28 I experienced a worsening of my symptoms.  I held tight to my hope of healing and decided to toss out my fleece and make a request for a sign.  I needed hope.  I asked God for a pair of running shoes.  I needed some person in my circle of friends and family to feel compelled to give me a pair of running shoes, with the belief that I would use them.

I told five people about this request.  One friend declared that she wanted to go out right then and get me a pair.  I made her swear to never do such a thing and she was the fifth person I told.

When I was 31 I had a spring/summer of sudden reprieve.  My walking became quicker and I gained strength.  I was able to walk up to three miles without assistance.  Though I was excited, I had not received the running shoes and I remained cautious.  I feel a little silly and “oh ye of little faith”  for telling you how seriously I took this gift of shoes, but this story won’t make any sense if I skip that part.

By 33, I was again using my scooter for routine outings and soon began using a cane when not using the scooter or wheelchair.  Many of you know that by 34 I had been accepted to the HSCT program at Pirogov hospital in Moscow, Russia.  By God’s grace and His hand on so many, I received a bone marrow transplant on my 35th birthday.  I responded miraculously well to the transplant.

Today, I can easily walk a mile unaided.  I need no cane and I have not graced a wheelchair or scooter since way back when I was 34.

I felt God all over our Russian journey.  Money was raised in such a way that we never had a moment’s worry that it wouldn’t be covered.  I felt like we had body surfed there.  I went through chemo beautifully and with no serious complications.  I came home – bald and ten very much needed pounds heavier.  MRIs confirmed what I felt in my bones: The disease was stopped and retreating.

The shoes became, for me, not a needed sign that I was cured, but a finishing touch.  I knew He had worked His miracle.  I knew the shoes would come.

On Sunday night/Monday morning at 1am, my little family returned home from a drive from Missouri, where we had a great visit with dear friends (preceded by equally satisfying stops to see family in Kansas and Wisconsin.)  I turned on the kitchen light and saw a package on the counter with the mail my Mom had collected for me.  It was a shoe box shaped package.  The sender was a dear friend who had challenged me to a 5k.

I tore that box open like an 8 year old on Christmas morning.

Inside was my brand new pair of neon colored, super fancy, make me run faster than you, running shoes.  Attached was a note telling me to name the time and place.

Long story short:  God is faithful.  Dark times do not always foretell dark ends.

I have waited 8 years to tell you about these shoes.  Anyone up for a 5k?


new shoes.










I’m a Terrible Gardener, However…

July 10, 2013

My neighbor had a stroke on Memorial Day weekend.  What I know about him mostly comes from observations over the fence.  This man is in his seventies and spent hours each day working in his yard and giant vegetable garden.  His niece recounted a story to us about how, before he even built his house on the land, he lifted up a handful of dirt and said, “This is MY dirt.”  Because I knew only that he had a heart for his land, and a fondness for putting Scripture in his self poured concrete, I took only a second’s thought to agree to tend to his garden while he recovers.

I always thought that I wanted to have a nice big garden, but now I know that I have no desire for anything bigger than a few square feet.  Working this land has been like babysitting someone’s hyperactive sextuplet toddlers to decide whether or not you want kids.

It is certainly a big job, but one I feel was given to me at the exact time when I needed something big and difficult to manage.  I have a lot of big and difficult things flying around my head that cannot be managed, dealt with, or changed.  Nothing unusual to me or to the human condition, but enough that my chemo brain and recovering body slipped into a depression like I have never experienced before.  There are days and weeks when I feel moderately better, but then there are entire months when I would rather just crawl back under the covers.

Here’s the thing about gardening: it happens in the sunshine and you cannot do it from under your covers.  If it was my own garden, I would have left it alone and let it die, but I feel a certain charge to have my neighbor return to see his land was not neglected.  This charge has seen me spend hours pulling weeds, watering dozens of fruit and nut trees, and having most of this time all to myself in the quiet outdoors.   Dirt under my nails has not cured me completely of depression, but I do believe it has kept me from disengaging altogether.

And so, while my dear neighbor works to come home, I am also working to come home.  I needed this deliberate quiet time to chat with God and marvel at His creation and I never in a million years could have guessed this would help at all.  I thought I just needed a cruise to Cancun, but whatever.


Debating the Undebatable: Abortion

June 27, 2013

I believe that Jesus is God and that He came to redeem my soul through His death on the cross.  Outside of that belief, I try not to get into dirt kicking contests in the public square.  I let other, more knowledgeable folks debate the peripherals about what walking with Christ should look like.  Please pardon me then, as I am about to attempt to discuss a difficult issue with my very amateur sense.

I want to address my dearly loved friends who believe that the pro-life movement is borne of a hatred of women.  I am not a Republican, though I agree with their general stance on abortion.  My reasoning is not because I care to get involved with what you do with your girl parts and I do wish we could have a chat about abortion without bringing them up.  It is not because I believe sex is dirty and nobody should be doing it.  It is not because I believe that everyone should agree with my thoughts on unmarried sex.

The simple truth is that I believe that life begins at conception.  We can debate all day long when that life has value and worth, but I do not think you will ever convince me that worth only applies to one side of the womb any more than I could convince you that life only has worth after pre-school.

When you think of the pro-life movement and determine that they are a bunch of Bible beaters who have a perverse desire to dictate how you operate your uterus, you dismiss the reality under which they work.  Lines like, “Don’t want an abortion? Don’t get one.” have no more more power in the argument than if I were to say, “Don’t like throwing toddlers in front of buses?  Don’t throw one.”  Because we believe that life in the womb is the most vulnerable stage of human growth, there will always be a fight to be had in this arena.  You will never, and I mean this sincerely, have abortions without protests.

In truth, I wish I did not believe that life begins at conception.  My life would be far less complicated if I could just agree that there is no living, feeling, one of a kind person growing in the womb.  But I can’t.

I understand that there are cases of rape, incest, and the life of the mother hanging in the balance, though I would argue that those are extreme cases and extreme cases make bad law.  Abortion is a multi billion dollar industry in this country and it is highly doubtful that extreme cases make up more than a tiny fraction of yearly procedures.

It appears as though our society is at a place where there will always be abortion and this means that there will always be protests.  These protests are not because angry white men want to police vaginas – but rather, the protests are because people like me are deeply moved to protect what we believe to be lives with worth.

(I welcome comments on this post, but I would appreciate it if we could stay on the topic of abortion and not delve into any other policies of either political party.  As I said, I am not a Republican, an Independent, or a Democrat.  This is not the place for CNN style commenting.)