Friday, May 18, 2007

My Visit Home

It was wonderful going home. I had the combined excitement of not being home for a while, and the combination of Mother's Day and branding offset the fear we all felt for my grandma. She's still getting tests, and the doctors haven't diagnosed her with any particular chemotherapy treatment at this point. But it looks like the breast cancer she had ten years ago recently started to send out seeds of cancer throughout the rest of her body. She has several places on her spine, where the cancer is hitting nerves which is particularly painful for her, but there seems to be cancer on her liver, lungs, different bones in her chest, and in a large number of lymph nodes around her body. While the doctors feel positive that they caught this pretty early, and feel hopeful for her recovery, it's been hard on my family.

The other thing that's been plaguing me has been the issue of moving. As soon as I got to the ranch I was overwhelmed. I always get homesick when I go back home, but last weekend was almost unbearable. I was talking to my mom, and she says its just emotions, which it probably is, but it's still so challenging. I want to move back to the ranch in Nebraska, six hours from Denver. As I sat there, listening to my dad sharing about the ranch and how overwhelmed he feels sometimes, it pulled strongly on my heart. My dad works more than full time on the ranch. He works everyday of the week, and can't leave the ranch. My mom as well works all the time, trying to get the cows fed, grounds taken care of, and chores done. My cousin, Cody, works on the ranch too. My grandparents each work as well, my grandpa physically getting older isn't able to do as much outside, and my grandma doing books and accounting.

With this cancer, my grandparents will be gone at least once a week for doctors visits and chemotherapy. One hospital is an hour away, the other 3.5 hours away, so pretty much a whole day at least just for doctors, which puts even more work on my parents.

Currently hubby hates his job. He's still not happy, and is just serving time until January when he'll go to Culinary Arts school. I love my job, but I am pretty sure I can take a leave of absence, and not lose my job. I'd still have to come to Denver about every other week, or every three weeks to work for a day or two to get everything paid and organized again, but there is the possibility of me not losing my job. So we could go to church here in Denver to keep in touch with friends and the people that help us so much with our marriage and with our walks with God, also there is a community church right next to the ranch that was just planted, and I wonder if The Chef and I could help there as well. If we moved to the ranch, we'd have housing and gas provided for us, plus whatever we ended up getting paid. We could save money on bills that way, and save enough to help when The Chef goes to school. Our lease is up on our apartment, so we could put some stuff in storage, and when we came back to Denver, if we couldn't find another cheap apartment, we could lease hubby's uncle's basement for a while (He's already mentioned that to us). It just seems that so many things are falling in to place that it seems God is working. But is he? I wonder if I'm feeling so passionately about moving because of God, that He's telling me that this is my one opportunity to take a leap of faith and really serve my family. Or after all of it, am I just being emotional?

With all of this, hubby and I are still teen leaders in our church, and a lot of teens and their parents look at us for spiritual leadership and guidance. The teens need us. However, with hubby's schedule, it's like it's only me in the teens, and so we'll obviously still need more workers. But I feel pulled. I feel like in the past I have sacrificed so much of my family and family commitments to do church stuff, be an Intern, help with campus, etc, that now that the opportunity is arising again, I hesitate. I want to honor God, I want to serve God, I want to take care of the teens, but does all of that mean not taking care of my family?

Ahh! So much is pulling on my heart and mind, and as much as I pray to God for peace and clarity, it doesn't seem to be helping. And to make matters worse, hubby's schedule this week has been horrific, so we haven't hardly even seen each other since I've been home. So we haven't really talked all of this through at all.

This is my mind, jumbled and confused. My heart is telling me to go to Nebraska, the responsible part of my mind is telling me to stay here. Please pray for me, and if you have any thoughts, I'd love to hear some feedback.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Branding on the Ranch

I went home this weekend for Mother's Day and to help out with the branding! It was amazing!

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