Feeling Welcome!

I very rarely post twice in one day, but I am in absolute awe.

We have been somewhat private about our struggles at the church I grew up in, but I have left no mistake that we felt forced after almost 40 years of membership, to search for a church where we could worship with  clear heads and open hearts.

We traveled from church to church, visiting several over the last 6 months.  A few weeks ago chance, or maybe the Holy Spirit, led me into the doors of one I never expected to even visit.

We received a welcome I could not have expected.  The pastors went out of their way to seek us out, to introduce us, to help us tour the church, and to give us a brief background on their mission.

They invited Meghan to a music class which she has attended weekly.

Last Sunday in church, Meghan was invited up to collect the Thanksgiving food offering.

My conversations, however brief, have been remembered and referred to.  I was told we would be welcomed in every way, but that any changing of my membership from my existing church, because of the highly charged emotions would be discouraged for at least a year.  No pressure just a place to offer praise.

We have a meeting with the pastors next Friday.  My husband and I together, to learn more of their programming and their theology.

This afternoon I received a phone call.  The pastors wanted to make sure they invited Meghan personally to Sunday School, which begins tomorrow.  They wanted to invite our family to join theirs at their afternoon cookout.

The call lasted 3 minutes.  But they took the time to make it.  They took the time to care.  They know nothing of our struggles or our complex medical issues, or our Cowden’s Syndrome, but they care.

God’s plans are often mysterious, but my eyes are wide open so I can see where and if I am being led.

As I have said so many times before – God has been holding my hand through this journey.  I am surrounding myself with supportive people – of all faiths.

“Sometimes your blessings come through raindrops, sometimes your healing comes through tears.  Sometimes a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know you’re near.  Sometimes trials of this life, the rain the snow, the hardest nights, are Your mercies in disguise.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XQan9L3yXjc  (The Laura Story video)

How Cowden’s Syndrome changed… my phone!

I know I have said this before.  And, I know that many of you can relate.  Since being diagnosed with Cowden’s Syndrome (insert your diagnosis here…) nothing is what it used to be.  I am not the same.  I have changed.  Out of necessity, for survival, and maybe because sometimes its good to get rocked to your core so you have to shake it up a little.  Don’t misunderstand me, I am not HAPPY about the diagnosis, or its far-reaching, life altering effects.  I am just saying that complacency sometimes has some troubles of its own.  A little shake up (or a few major earthquakes) now and again, keep us hopping.

So, when I say to you that my diagnosis with Cowden’s Syndrome has forced my transition into being a Smart Phone user, maybe you can relate.  I promise, for me the two are closely connected.

I am frugal.  Have always been careful with my money.  I love to give to charities, I love to give to friends, for weddings, and showers, and babies, and special occasions.  You should know that my credit card balances are respectably, almost frighteningly low, and I have been known to stop and save up for the things I want.  And, you won’t catch me spending $100 on jeans I can get for $30, or gleefully sending off the payment for the utility bills without a slight lament that it seems like money wasted.

When we first got cable, I only wanted one box.  I resisted the DVR at first too.  I lost – both times.  But I didn’t care so much because Felix wanted it, and at least it was going to make him happy.

I don’t require a lot.  A few pairs of comfortable sneakers, some nice jeans, and a few tops that fit me.  I need a working computer, frosted cinnamon Cheerios, and an ice cream cone – often.  I am content to alternate between a few pieces of jewelry.  I like my house clean and neat – but other than that, it is hard for me to come up with something I want, or need, except for perhaps a few more hours in a day, and less time tied to my computer, which leads me to the reasons it might be time for  a smart phone.

Now, Felix got his months ago.  And I was OK with that.  Again, he needed the boy toy.  And, he uses it.  He watches videos as he commutes from work, plays with family photos, and scaling down into just one lightweight device made his job as a climbing electrician even easier.  When he first got his he said to me, you have to.  I said, “No way!”  I was still calculating the cost of his data plan and what it would do to our monthly cell phone bill.

But, these last few months have been a litany of medical tests and appointments for Meghan and I.  We are constantly awaiting calls, and test results.  And, I have found that in Manhattan, many – ok MOST, doctors will Email for convenience.  Convenient – if you have access.

I can’t access my personal Email from work. Even if it gets through the fire wall, it’s just a bad idea.  So I find myself daily, as I run home from work to let the dogs out – frantically checking Email and responding as quickly as I can.  I also find myself waiting a lot, at doctors, at dancing school, at swimming, at PT, wasting time where I could be handling all of this.

So, my husband sat me down for “the talk.”

“Remember after your cancer in March, when I told you to order the Cirque du Soliel tickets for Disney World?   Remember when you told me there was no way because the tickets were such and expense.  Do you remember?”

I did remember, as I stifled a giggle.  He had explained to me that now, having had the “wake up” of our lives – we were to take some chances, have some fun, and DO things we wanted to do.  He reminded me that we are fortunate to be able to afford nice things, and sometimes, we need to treat ourselves to family memories.  He said, “If having cancer didn’t wake you up, I don’t know what will.”

So, I ordered the Cirque du Soliel tickets last March, and we thoroughly enjoyed the show in August.

Now, he said – it’s time.  Get rid of this phone.

Probably only a slight exaggeration

And move onto this one.

“It’s time you stop worrying so much about every little detail.  Have a little faith.  Have a little fun.  You have earned it.”

He’s right.  He usually is.  Last night I ordered my Iphone 5.

It will take about a month.  I can wait.  Poor Siri will be so busy with reminders she won’t know what to do.  And I can’t wait to release a little of the pressure of having to remember everything.

Cowden’s Syndrome, with all the complications it added – means that that smart phone moved from luxury to necessity.  And I must admit, I am resisting calculating the new bill because even I am little excited about being shoved into 2012!

And that my friends is how Cowden’s Syndrome (even) changed my phone!