Just a glimpse of me...

My photo
Do you ever feel STUCK? In 2000, I began looking for answers to some tough questions in my life. I'd searched high & low and finally conceded to search the promises found in the Bible. Those promises have sustained & guided me through the loss of a parent, the struggle with anxiety & depression, the loss of a valued relationship and so much more! I've found joy amid the pain. And, I want to share it with you!

31 October 2014

The Best Way Out

"Two Worlds II" (oil on canvas) by Jessica Bentley, Artist
Life is full of seasonsAnd, some of those seasons are grueling... shame, fear, grief, illness, insecurity, loss, persecution... and the list goes on. At times we feel paralyzed by what's happening in our world -- with those around us or what's happening to us -- inside our bodies or our minds. 

My first thought when facing a tough season has often been a question which is probably asked often by many people, "What's the fastest way to get through these seasons?" 

30 October 2014

How to LOVE the UnLIKEable

In 3rd grade I was IN LOVE with Tony Green. He was so handsome, I could hardly keep my jaw closed when I looked his way. He had the cutest smile & the most incredible green eyes -- to match his last name. When I found out that those eyes were "wandering eyes" and that he'd been passing notes in school to several of us 3rd grade girls, the LOVE turned to HATE pretty quickly. I took his school picture, drew devil horns on his head, drew a pitchfork beside him, gave him a demonic mustache and goatee & stuck a push pin through both of his eyes! And, then I tucked that picture away in my "treasure box" to be discovered years later when I was all grown up.

How does it go so quickly from LOVE to HATE. And, what's the difference between LOVE and LIKE? Can we LOVE people who are clearly unlikeable to us?

29 October 2014

The Grass Is Greener...

My husband is used to me blurting out, "Please pull over so I can get a picture of that sunset!!" He's had to live with me & my obsession for photography (of sunsets, sunrises and much, much more) for many years now. Tonight was no exception. As we were headed to the Open House at our g-daughter's day care center, the sun was setting. And, I was smitten. The clouds seemed to make a trail to the west - beckoning me to follow. 

I've wanted to float away from my responsibilities & my reality with the clouds on many occasions. I've wanted to catch hold of a jet trail & take it to distant places. I've watched people getting on planes & day-dreamed about where they were going & if I'd like it there.

28 October 2014

Seasons of Life - Stretching, Learning & Growing

I'm in the season of my life when I get to accompany a parent to health care visits. And, yesterday was one of those days. However, said "parent" is in a season of life where she does not want to listen to a thing I say - ha ha! The day was a little challenging... in that way. However, I would not have missed the time with my loved one. 

We laughed, talked, and reminisced. We enjoyed a leisurely lunch at an old mom & pops restaurant located in a 100+ year old building which was former a bank. We strolled through a small shop along the main street of that town & talked about fashion trends these days. I shared pics on my phone of our son's recent engagement at the State Park where we'd taken her & Dad on his last Christmas. We looked at pics of my g'daughter -- HER GREAT g'daughter -- and the adventures of hiking, playing & meeting Peg + Cat and Bob the Builder at a recent costume party.

27 October 2014

A Woman's Most Perfect Curve

It's been said that when you're comfortable in your own skin, you're at home anywhere. I can't really say I've ever been super comfortable in my skin. When I was in grade school, I was grossly thin -- the kind of thin that other kids used for jokes on the playground. To make matters worse, in junior high, I grew several inches & looked a bit like the TV character LURCH on the Adam's Family. In high school, skinny wasn't as much an issue as the fact that my body... well, my body... didn't look very mature. I was told in front of the entire youth group at church (my peers) that I still looked like a 6th or 7th grader. High school moved into college years & the curves I had desired were skipped!. What I got were the "ugly curves" associated with that awful term know as "the College Freshman Forty."

26 October 2014

Dream On...

Have you ever openly shared your heart & your desires with a friend to only hear the words, "Dream on!"?? I've heard that phrase more than once as I told someone about some of the desires in my heart. When I was young, I dreamed that I grew up to live at the Biltmore Estate... I rode the horses daily. I watched deer graze in the lawn below from my balcony. I walked the trails along the Reflective Pond & the Broad River. I read books lying on the shaded hills overlooking the Smoky Mountains. And, I entertained guests at lavish dinners & royal balls in MY HOME.... in my DREAMS.

25 October 2014

Rainy Day Recipe - Country Cemeteries

It was what I like to call my birthday week... which generally turns into my birthday month for celebratory reasons. The weather was not cooperating!! Although the forecast called for only a 30% chance of rain, we seemed to be getting all of our portion during the daylight hours - specifically between the hours of 7:30am and 3pm - when my schedule is more open due to family members being out of the house. A brisk walk for 3-4 miles along country roads in the rain might happen every once in awhile. But, my idea of "walking in the rain" does not meet true exercise standards.

24 October 2014

Cancer + Coincidences = Peaceful Sleep

Can you tell how USED
this book is :)
I'd lost count of the nights trying to sleep on a chair in the waiting room or in the guest room at my parents house during my dad's battle with cancer that year. The unexpected hospital stays were happening more frequently & reminded me of the two months I'd spent in the hospital during my second pregnancy. Both times, when I was there & when my father was there, a constant parade of nurses, doctors, interns & staff members filled the days & nights with their visits. There always seemed to be many more questions than answers. Was I ever glad about my zeal for medical knowledge all those years ago in my high school & college days. That made it a little easier to understand their "medical jargon".

One night at the hospital, Dad took a turn for the worse

23 October 2014

Struggling to Do It ALL!

I'm a wife, a mom, & a DeeDee (my g'mommy name). I'm a daughter, a sister & a friend. I'm a volunteer, a blogger & a somewhat-but-hopefully-not-totally-addicted social media person. Putting all of those things together (as is the series title for this month) is a daunting challenge. But, the worst thing of all is... I'm an over-achiever. 

My childhood, youth & adulthood have been riddled with me feeling insecure and struggling

22 October 2014

Not All Those Who Wander Are Lost

Certain times of the year the battle is more challenging than other times. Summer days are full of sunshine, gardening and exercising outside. Summer nights are filled with watching fireflies over the neighboring fields or sitting outside & gazing up at all the beautiful stars you can see when you're this far away from city lights. But winter... winter is... much less fun... for me.

What's the battle I fight?? It's against anxiety & depression. I've written a lot about it my battle -- just check out the number of posts I've labeled for anxiety & depression!!

21 October 2014

Living Fully & Letting Go of Expectations

       I recently escaped real life for a 5-day trip away from the soybeans, corn & cows to the land of red clay, REAL sweet tea & sweltering hot sun. We packed our car to the roof with 3 adults, 1 infant & enough baby stuff for a 2-week trip out of the country. We headed away from the plains, through the Smoky Mountains and toward the deep south... Sumter, South Carolina.

20 October 2014

A Kiss & A Goodbye

It seems like yesterday. It seems like 20 years ago... like a dream of something that happened long, long ago. It brings raw emotion. It brings an unexplainable calm & peace. It brings thanksgiving for the home in which I was raised. Twelve years ago today... October 20, 2002... at 12:10pm... my father breathed his last breath as I was sitting beside him, holding his hand.  

We'd been singing his favorite songs to him all through the night & into the morning. I was in the room alone with him.

19 October 2014

Honoring the Memory of My Sister

My mom carried her first child full term with no complications. The baby was active during the pregnancy and in the early stages of labor. But with no warning, she was stillborn. No husbands were allowed to be in during deliveries back then. No explanations were given back in those days. My mother was left in the surgical room, for what felt like an eternity to her, as she faced this new reality... alone.

It seems strange to feel a connection to someone who never breathed their first breath of life -- to someone whose life was only demonstrated by normal kicks & wiggles while nested in my mother's womb. It seems odd to feel a connection with a person I never met. My mother's connection to that child runs deep. And, I feel a strong connection as well. My heart tells me that one day I will meet her in heaven and, we'll rejoice together that we are sisters.

On October 25, 1988, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed October as National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. Later the day of October 15th was set aside as Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. It's to be a day of remembrance for pregnancy loss & infant death (which includes but is not limited to miscarriage, stillbirth, SIDS, or the death of a newborn). Presently, it's observed annually in the United States & Canada. In recent years, it's also been observed in the United Kingdom, Italy and the Australian States of Western Australia & New South Wales. The day itself is observed with remembrance ceremonies and candle-lighting vigils and concludes with the International Wave of Light, a worldwide lighting of candles at 7:00pm. 

I chose to observe that day this year by doing something I've thought of hundreds of times but, never done. I decided to go the cemetery on the southwest side of my town where my mother's first child (my not-yet-met sister) was interred. My intent was to find the grave-site and leave flowers picked from my yard. In talking with my mother, I learned that the remains of my sister had been relocated in the 60's beside her mom's remains. My maternal grandmother had died when my mom was a young adult. With the help of a friend who works in the office there, I was able to locate the grave sites. Beckie's grave marker was totally buried under sod. The sod was quite wet due to the drizzling rain. So, I got down on my knees & began clearing dirt away with my hands... 

Journal Entry 10-15-2014: Today I cleared off my sister Beckie's grave marker & left a bouquet of country wildflowers there. In doing so, I hope I honored the memory of her... and the great sacrifice that was made by my mom on that day so many years ago. My prayers go out to those who have experienced such a deep, deep loss!

Linked with the Nesting Place community through the write31days challenge, October 2014 - post No 19.

18 October 2014

Dealing with Sleepless Nights

Sleepless nights... OH HOW I KNOW THOSE! They say it has something to do with age. I don't always agree with "they". Sometimes I'm wide awake due to over-stimulation from a full day. Sometimes I'm wide awake over-thinking situations or planning an upcoming event. Whatever the reason... I am quite familiar with sleepless and restless nights. (But, I have a theory on that.)

My approach to sleepless or restless nights is first to spend some time in prayer about other people & their needs. I also give thanks for blessings that I saw that day. I recite scriptures that I've memorized and recall lyrics to songs that have blessed me before. 

Two of my "Go To's" on the nights when sleep eludes me:

1. The lyrics from "Jesus, King of Angels" by Fernando Ortega. His lyrics are such a sweet reminder of God's vastness and His intimacy walking hand in hand. 

Jesus, King of angels, heaven's light,
Shine Your face upon this house tonight.
Let no evil come into my dreams;
Light of heaven, keep me in Your peace.

Remind me how You made dark spirits flee,
And spoke Your power to the raging sea.
And spoke Your mercy to a sinful man;
Remind me, Jesus, this is what I am.

The universe is vast beyond the stars,
But You are mindful when the sparrow falls,
And mindful of the anxious thoughts
That find me, surround me, and bind me...

With all my heart I love You, Sovereign Lord.
Tomorrow, let me love You even more.
And rise to speak the goodness of Your name
Until I close my eyes and sleep again.

The universe is vast beyond the stars,
But You are mindful when the sparrow falls,
And mindful of the anxious thoughts
That find me, surround me, and bind me...

Jesus, King of angels, heaven's light,
Hold my hand and keep me through this night.

2. Psalm 4:8 is a favorite verse to recite when those sleepless night try to captivate me... 
"I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; for You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety." Psalm 4:8 NKJV
What do you do on the restless nights?

Linked with the Nesting Place community through the write31days challenge, October 2014 - post No 18.

17 October 2014

All You Need Is Love

There are times in life when you are... held between earth & heaven... with no words to speak... with only raw emotion to remind you that you are, in fact, still alive. The passing of a cherished loved one... cradling a newborn baby in your arms... hearing the diagnosis of a terminal illness... watching your child grow up to give birth to their own... being broken under the load of grief & sense of loss when a marriage dies...

16 October 2014

The Value of FREE Things

The weather is NOT cooperating... for mowing lawns... for the farmers needing to bring in the harvest... for those of us who want to exercise outside! This was the second morning this week that we've tried to get back in from our morning walks before being caught by the rain. Yesterday I was pretty soaked by the time I returned to my house. This morning I was running extremely late to meet up with my friend. It would seem that someone just piled all the WET walking clothes, gloves, etc. in a heap on the laundry room floor. And, 53 degrees with a chance of rain is NOT a time to go on a walkabout without the proper attire.

15 October 2014

A Living Legacy

A great-grandmother holds a baby.
And, the memory of her -
her works & deeds
will live on...
My mind is full as I write this in the wee hours of the night. I can't sleep. And, I'm perfectly fine with that. My heart is full & overflowing. Certain things happen in life and, they just feel right... and you're filled with joy. 

Last week a young woman gave birth to a beautiful, healthy baby. She desired a life for her child that she could not provide - security, provision and love. She made the decision to relinquish her child to the care of parents who would give her baby what she could not. By what I believe is & was God's provision, that infant was placed into the loving home of some of our dearest friends. The world has become a better place as this family has grown & welcomed this child. And, lives will never be the same - but be greatly enriched - for anyone touched by this story.

14 October 2014

Making Daily Deposits

As a young woman, I was convinced that I should not have children - as I would NOT make a good mother. I was insecure, not that smart (merely an overachiever), and ill-equipped to shepherd a young life through this crazy world. I was convinced that the world was getting worse & worse as the years went by. "Who would want to bring a child into this world?" was what I thought. And then I fell in love with a man who had different ideas about being a parent...

Am I being prejudiced by saying that men seem to be a little more confident about their endeavors & their capabilities? Well, my man was confident that we would make great parents. So, with his loving encouragement & support... we headed down the road of becoming "Mommy" and "Daddy".

We didn't have a lot of money. We didn't have a big house. We started out by living in an apartment owned by an aunt & uncle that was available for several months. Then we rented a small 2-bedroom apartment. With the help of the LOML's parents, we were able to buy a small house with 2-bedrooms after the birth of our first child. The house also had a fully furnished 3-bedroom basement apartment ready to rent out to local college students. Even with that extra rental income, we barely brought in enough to make ends meet. But, we were rich in "LOVE"... for each other & for our children.

I was determined to create memories with our two children regardless of the amount of available financial resources. We started with the simple things... 
  • vacations & holidays staying with family members in their homes
  • homemade costumes for Halloween
  • birthday celebrations at home with family & friends 
  • picnics on a blanket on the floor in front of a kids movie
  • hand-me-down clothes or clothes from a local GoodWill Store
  • rides in the car to check out the farmers harvesting in the fields surrounding our town or to see holiday lights
  • walks in the neighborhood or through the local state park year-round
  • wrapping up items we needed for our gifts at Christmas & birthdays
We didn't have money to do things as I'd once hoped I would as a parent. We gave what we had... our time & our love. We did the best we could to give our children some fun, loving memories to remember as they grew up. Most of the time, our gifts to them were the simplest of things. We pray that our deposits into the lives of our children will help them as they walk forward into their adult lives.
"Each day of our lives we make deposits in the memory banks of our children." ~ Charles R. Swindoll
Linked with the Nesting Place community through the write31days challenge, October 2014 - post No 14.

13 October 2014

Moving Mountains

I take too many pictures. I can't seem to help it. And, the bad thing is, I am pathetic about deleting photos on my devices. The last phone I had held over 1,300 pictures on it when I traded it in for the next. But, I happen to be one of those people who's deeply moved by looking an an image & thinking back about what was happening at that moment in the picture, what was happening in my life at that time, and what was I thinking about as I took the picture. For me, a picture truly does speak 1,000 words!

The picture here is no different. My heart & mind is full just looking at this picture. It was taken when this sweet baby was six days old. That's right SIX DAYS OLD!

12 October 2014

Buried Alive + Grocery Lists + Blogging

At the moment, I feel stuck. And, it's not a horrible "stuck" though. I'm trapped under a napping baby girl who seems to be in a pattern of detecting when her DeeDee (my g'mommy name) moves her to her bed for nap time. I'm entering this post with one hand on my smart phone :)

I have a million little things that need to be done -- most of which I cannot do while buried here. And, many of those tasks are nearly impossible to accomplish in her waking hours!

I'm a lefty and "working" on my phone with that hand. I've made a grocery list & am writing now. Even though my left hand is free, it's falling asleep from the lack of blood flow. And, come to think of it, my shirt collar feels very warm and perhaps a little wet. Could someone be drooling on me? I'm getting a little drowsy myself. Here's comes the question I battle almost every time I'm stuck in this way... "To sleep or not to sleep?"

It's not easy to accomplish things with a little one knocked out on your chest or following behind you on your heels... or digging in the kitchen trash when you look away for 30 seconds. Note to self: Don't loose sight of the toddler for a moment in their waking hours. 

All of a sudden an image pops in my head of her "FINGER PAINTING" the wall & window with some unknown substance the other day when she appeared to be playing with dolls, books and puzzles in her Pack N Play. 

I guess being buried alive under a drooling toddler at this moment isn't bad at all :)

Linked with the Nesting Place community through the write31days challenge, October 2014 - post No 12.

11 October 2014

No Mountains... No Ocean... Where's the Beauty?

TRUE CONFESSION: I've been mesmerized by the harvest of the HUGE cornfield by our property. The field's approximately 1 mile square & took ALL day long to harvest - with ZERO breaks! The farmer started early in the morning on the southeast side (where the sun was already warming the field & drying off the morning dew). He finished up over 9 hours later. He crossed a road to do another field. I can still hear his equipment off in a distance. I'm grateful that I was able to watch the farmer today at work. I've been held captive by his hard work!

One of my favorite parts about living here has been the harvest.  I'm sure the farmers have been amused at me as I've stood in the "dust of their work" with two cameras in hand - snapping shot after shot.  I can't seem to get enough of the view.

Although raised in a rather rural community at the base of the Appalachian mountains, I've never really lived out in the country between miles & miles of open fields. Living here has awakened a new love in me for the mid west! The beauty is simple - yet profound.

I remember a time when I could not imagine life without mountains decorating the distant horizon. The mountains reminded me of the "greatness" of this planet. I remember a time in my life when I thought I would only be happy living beside the ocean & smelling the salt air each time I walked out my door. Walking beside the sea & watching the sun rise seemed like the best view a person could ever see.

In this season of my life, I am drinking in the beauty around me... right here in the state of "stuckinindiana". The golden hour over a newly harvested field is breathtaking. The waves over a sea of winter wheat as the wind blows over the open spaces out here is gorgeous. The color changes of the soybean fields as they mature are beautiful. The variety of trees in the wooded areas along & between the fields turn a rainbow of colors as the harvest begins & ends... filling my world with color.

I keep returning to this thought lately...
Beauty surrounds us -- everyone of us, no matter where we are, no matter where we are headed. We only need to open our eyes to it. 

Linked with the Nesting Place community through the write31days challenge, October 2014 - post No 11.

10 October 2014

Love + A Big Piece of Chocolate Cake

Back in the day when all photos were taken in sepia & station wagons with faux wood panel siding decorated the neighborhoods... Back in the day when seat belts were not required & no one cared that the kids were climbing over one another in the back of the cars traveling down the road... Back in the day when the husbands went off to work and the wives stayed home wearing adorable dresses & pearl necklaces... Back in the day when televisions came in only black and white & having a TV was seen as a bit of an extravagance... Back in that day, a young couple lived & served together as pastors at a small Church of God in Lapaz, Indiana...

09 October 2014

Making Memories - A Moment At A Time

I couldn't seem to fall asleep. My mind was racing -- nothing bad, it just would not shut off. Knowing that having television on does nothing for relaxing a person's mind, I turned it off... just as they were talking about the full lunar eclipse that would be clearly visible in our time zone in less than 5 hours. I seemed to fall asleep pretty quickly & felt unbelievably rested when I woke around 5am. The room was flooded with bright light from the moon setting in the western sky. I jumped up to take a look. It was already partially covered. I cheerfully told the LOML what was happening... no response. I sat in bed beside the peacefully sleeping LOML for half an hour -- peering out the window at the moon. As soon as he became cognizant of the new day, I mentioned the lunar eclipse & he headed to the patio door. I gleefully followed.

08 October 2014

Autumn - A Time of Sowing

The first time I boldly stood at the edge of the field as the farmer passed by in his combine harvesting the corn, I learned a valuable lesson. One should NOT stand too closely to a combine harvesting corn! The large beast of a machine aggressively grabs up 8-10 rows of corn and forcefully shoots out debris... everywhere. That first year, I should have more closely observed the neighboring horses in the field beside -- as they backed away a safe distance until the combine had passed.

This year, as I was eagerly awaiting

07 October 2014

I'll Show You Mine If...

I'll show you mine, if you'll show me yours. That statement comes with some not so great images. Perhaps I should have titled this post "I Told You So" or "Just Keepin' It Real" or "My House is Messier Than Your House" or "When Guests Come Over, I Hide Things in the Shower". Today's post is being written & photographed... and then I'm going to see what I can accomplish around the house besides reading & writing for #write31days :)

I'll show you mine if you'll show me yours...

06 October 2014

The Clutter of Life

If you could see this full picture,
you would see that she's
covered with black beans
from below her chin to
the top of her fuzzy little head!
The house is partially decorated for fall with the summer things sitting alongside until they get put away. The floors are littered with cardboard books, dolls & stuffed animals. A Pack N Play sits in the great room & serves as a huge toy box. It can no longer HOLD our little climber! The kitchen sink is full - as is the counter beside it. The laundry room has 2 loads of clean clothes waiting on the top of the dryer to be folded. The dryer holds one more load which will come out when there's a place for it. There are NO LESS THAN 150 oil & acrylic paintings leaning against walls in practically EVERY room of the house. (That's another story there!) And, let's not even talk about the Christmas tree topper

05 October 2014

A Chapter Closed Today - Paradise by the Sea

Some chapters close in our lives with a wonderful party of celebration... and then there are others...

For almost 13 years, we lived next door to a married couple who owned a condo right by an open beach area on the east coast of Florida. Since the family we'd left (when we first became stuckinindiana) still resided in south Florida, our neighbor's condo became our favorite place to stop when driving into the state. Year after year, we offered them money for the use of their home. But, they would only accept a small gift of appreciation or our verbal thanks.

Oh the memories we had in that place.

04 October 2014

The Smallest Gestures...

Last month I was overwhelmed by a sense of sadness & bittersweet gratitude one evening when my mother was visiting from Fort Wayne. She announced that she was heading to bed in the guest room, stood up & walked over to me. As she leaned in, I kissed her on the cheek & said, "I love you, Mom."

I headed toward my room to prepare for bed. I thought about my father's passing nearly 12 years ago - October of 2002. Twelve years seems like a long time. Mom has not remarried. And, knowing her, most of her days probably feel pretty similar to when he first went to heaven.

03 October 2014

PUTTING THINGS TOGETHER - Atlantic Ocean Sunrise + A Broken Metatarsal

Walking the beach early one morning on a foot that was KILLING ME* resulted in getting several great pictures of the sunrise. And, walking early in the morning (especially by the sea) puts my mind to thinking. This particular morning, I was thinking about how I profess to be a believer in Christ and a follower of Christ. I don't try to hide it. I'm quite open about it. I thought about how that public profession of my personal faith might put me in a position where I'd be closely watched...
  • watched to see if my actions are in alignment with my beliefs
  • watched to see if I'm a contributing member of society or oblivious to what is happening in the world around me
  • watched to see if there's any reason someone else would want to live this way or choose to believe as I do
  • watched to see if I'm kind & accepting or harsh & judgmental.
I wondered...

02 October 2014

Annoying Someone for Life

What's the recipe for a good marriage? Some of the ingredients I'd put in that recipe:
* friendship
* grace & forgiveness
* support & encouragement
* patience
* honesty
* humor, humor, humor

I've been married to the LOML for over 25 years. And, laughter has been a big part of those years together. Oh trust me... we don't see eye-to-eye on plenty of things. And, we both have the "death stare" perfected. But, we enjoy laughing with each other and, often, at each other. 

The old saying says "laughter is the best medicine". There's a lot of truth to that statement - especially, I would say, in marriage. I totally agree with Rita's words below:
"I love being married. It's so great to find that one special person you want to annoy for the rest of your life." ~ Rita Rudner
Linked with the Nesting Place community through the write31days challenge, October 2014 - post No 2

Other posts of mine about marriage & relationships:

01 October 2014

2014 September ONE THOUSAND GIFTS #JoyDare

2014 September ONE THOUSAND GIFTS #JoyDare

One Thousand Gifts (by Ann Voskamp)
#1000Gifts #JoyDare

Buy book here...      

I took the 1,000 Gifts Dare for the year of 2012...
I continued in 2013...
I'm now into 2014! 

Today I find JOY in...

9/1/14 Mon
2902. family prayers together before the 13.5 hour drive!
2903. silly faces to pass the time
2904. waking up the neighbor rooster upon arriving home after 11pm - OOPS!

Taking Care of What the Good Lord Gave You

I have a dear friend who gave up a lot in her life as she battled breast cancer. She was diagnosed in February 2010 with its most aggressive form. The professionals gave her little, to no, hope. She believed otherwise. She's a loving mama, a radiant bride, a believer and a fighter! She's a victor, not a victim. She's a warrior, not a wounded soul.

Her battle with breast cancer was rough. There were a lot of sacrifices made.