Here.
I have no idea where to start this post, or even why I'm writing it. Perhaps just to get a chronological account of how we wound up here. I don't know. I do know that my prayer life is completely inadequate, and I'll be working hard on that, among other things.

4 years ago this coming summer, as most of you know, Eric was diagnosed with Non-Alcoholic Steatohepatitis. It's a form of liver disease, obviously not caused by alcohol consumption. Normally this disease is painless and asymptomatic until the person is literally dying, but not with Eric. That's actually how we knew something was wrong, he started having severe abdominal pain. We saw several specialists while we were still living at home, but no one really had any answers. All we were told was that no one really knew why he was in pain, and that there wasn't really much they could do about it. We were told, though, that it was still very early in the disease, and that if he did get to a point where he needed a transplant, it wouldn't be for 10 or 15 years. Oh Goody!

After much praying and talking and more praying and talking and research we decided that the best thing for us to do would be to move to a place where there were hospitals and doctors who specialized in this disease. A place where there was research and trials, a place with some hope. We decided on this place, where there is not one, but two amazing hospitals within 45 minutes of where we would live.

We were so excited for a change, for hope of health and better options for Eric, but this was NOT an easy move for us. At all. Really, this move for us took a lot of faith. A LOT. Our house did not sell. We were moving 12 hours from home, away from our friends and family. Away from our church family. Away from everything we had ever known. We didn't really have a place to go to. Eric did not have a job. But we packed up our house anyway, and off we went with our 11 month old son and our 2 year old daughter with the faith that God would make it work. And he did.

Right before we left, we had some friends who needed a place to stay. Their lease was up, and they couldn't get a mortgage, and they really had no where to go. They had three kids, they'd gone to high school with Eric, and attended church with us. We knew them fairly well, but what we did not know was that this was a very, very, very bad idea. They paid the rent for, oh, 3 or 4 months. Then it started coming late. Then it was short. Then they paid nothing at all. Just as we were ready to evict them, they told us they were moving out, leaving us with the rent on our apartment, and our mortgage to pay. Eric went back after they moved out, and they had trashed the place. He had to do some major painting and repair, and have the carpets cleaned, etc. It was very frustrating for us, but we did what we could to get it back in good condition, and keep up with the payments. Slowly, over time, we fell farther and farther behind. We couldn't keep up with both the rent and the mortgage, we couldn't find anyone else to rent it, and at the time, the market was awful. Nothing was moving. This all happened in the first year that we were here.

But backing up. We drove up here, and found an apartment complex that we liked. We moved in immediately, and put about 1/4 of our things in storage, as we went from 2,100 sqf to about 1,300. After two months of job hunting, Eric found a job. He's a paramedic, so he had to have his licences all switched and everything. It took time. But eventually he got it all sorted out and got a job (btw this job is fantastic and he loves it, they've always been good to us). The problem was, we took about a $15,000 a year pay cut. Eric was a Lieutenant where we lived before. He had several years of experience, and most of those years were in the same job. When we moved, it was literally like starting over. God blessed us though, and Eric found another part-time medic job. Also, within a few months of us being here, two of the families at our new church asked if I would be willing to babysit their children, since I was staying home with mine. It was 5 kids total, age 3 and under (including my two) but it paid the bills, and that was what we needed. God was so good to us. We literally paid off our cars the week before I stopped keeping those kids. I love how he works. Anyhow. I think I'm losing track.

Really, things settled for us here. We are now living in a rented house (btw, we have the best landlord EVER), and Eric's part-time job is giving him full time hours. We're making it. Barely, but we are making it, and on our own, at that. ( I mean that we aren't reliant on our parents or anyone else to bail us out, just God) We are somehow managing to scrape by and pay our bills each month. We are literally living pay check to pay check. But we always have, and we're used to it.

The house we are living in is great, but it isn't ours. We were only supposed to be here a year, and then the owners were going to try to sell, but they've been awesome, and in July we'll have been here two years. We don't know how long that'll last, so recently we started looking around. We applied for a mortgage, and casually started looking for houses in the area. I knew better, but I let myself get my hopes up. Sigh.

In October we were notified that our house back home was going into foreclosure. We managed to get the bank to do a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure, but that's still not good for us. Several months ago Eric had another biopsy and we found out that his liver disease is progressing. He's gotten no relief, there is no treatment, there is no cure. Then he wound up with meningitis around Thanksgiving, and as I'm sure you can imagine, our medical bills are PILING. We're having a hard time getting a mortgage, and I feel like we just can't get caught up with bills, or anything.

There really isn't much we can do. Not *right now*. Nothing but pray and pray and pray some more. Eric is working 2 full time jobs, and teaching at the community college part time, even when he's sick. If I were to go back to work, the money would most likely go to child care, and lets face it, I'm just not in a place emotionally to go back to work. Eric's pay checks basically cover what we need to live. They pay our bills, buy our gas and groceries each month, and give us a little wiggle room, but not much. Any extra we get goes to church, and to Chronic Love each month. I'm rambling now, excuse me.

Sigh.

There was a time, not so long ago, that I was an eloquent writer. I had all the words and I could make things make sense. I feel like none of this makes sense. Not that it matters, I'm just typing, here. But I did want to write all of this out. There was a reason. I wanted to ask all of you to pray. I'm not sure what even needs to be prayed for. Peace, for one. Peace in whatever God decides. Pray for God's will. Pray for relief for Eric, for better health, a better quality of life. Hope. Something. I think we're most afraid of the unknown. I'm sure we are, everyone is. We don't know what's going to happen with Eric. I try not to think of these things often, but really, we don't know what's going to happen. How long will Eric be able to work? Will he eventually need a transplant? Is he going to continually get worse? Will this kill him? What will happen if that happens? Am I prepared to take care of these kids alone? We have life insurance, sure, but where will we go? Surely we can't rent this house forever. There are so many questions, and really no answers. Nothing but faith. We just have to keep going and holding on to the faith that it's going to work out. It will be okay. Somehow this will all sort itself out because God is in control and has us in his palm. But your prayers would be really nice.

I'm sure there is more I can say, but I think I've written the panic out of my system, which was my original intent. Thanks for sticking with me, and reading, if indeed you made it this far. I love you guys, really, I do. Thank you, too, for your prayers. And if there is anything that I can pray for you for, please let me know!

Court
4 Responses
  1. Suzanne Says:

    Court, the beauty of mommy blogging is exactly what you did. I have been praying for you, but to know the details helps me pray specifically for your (and your family's) needs.
    Never hesitate to contact me via email as well, if there is anything you CAN'T post. I will do the same! Watch for my email! Take care. :)


  2. OneGirl Says:

    Jeremiah 29:11-14:
    10-11 This is God's Word on the subject: "As soon as Babylon's seventy years are up and not a day before, I'll show up and take care of you as I promised and bring you back home. I know what I'm doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for. 12"When you call on me, when you come and pray to me, I'll listen. 13-14 "When you come looking for me, you'll find me. "Yes, when you get serious about finding me and want it more than anything else, I'll make sure you won't be disappointed." God's Decree. "I'll turn things around for you. I'll bring you back from all the countries into which I drove you"—God's Decree—"bring you home to the place from which I sent you off into exile. You can count on it.

    Hebrews 11:1
    1 Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.

    Sometimes asking the "what ifs" doesn't help...I know it's so much easier said than done, but try to just rely on God. He will provide all you need. Your daily bread. Asking "what if this and what if that" probably won't get you very far in the long run.

    Matthew 6:25-34:

    25"For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? 27"And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? 28"And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, 29yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. 30"But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith! 31"Do not worry then, saying, 'What will we eat?' or 'What will we drink?' or 'What will we wear for clothing?' 32"For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33"But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. 34"So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.


  3. angie Smith Says:

    i just wanted you to know i was here...praying for you all. for wisdom, peace, and discernment as you wait on the Lord in very trying circumstances. thank you so much for letting me walk alongside you and eric from where i am...be assured that i care and that i would love any updates you would like to share...

    much love
    ang


  4. JD Says:

    Just wanted to take a moment to let you know that I've been praying for your family, and that I appreciate that you've shared your heart and your struggles openly so that we may pray accordingly.

    You're not alone...
    You are loved...


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  • I'm a wife. I'm a mom. I'm a photographer. I'm a lover of Jesus. My house is a mess, my kids are dirty, we eat take out more often than not. My life is loud, busy and crazy. And that's okay with me.
    This is Eric, the man you've been praying for. He's a paramedic. He quilts in his spare time. No, I couldn't make that up :) He has NASH (a form of liver disease, non-alcoholic) and diabetes, but those things don't define him. He's a man of God, an insanely wonderful husband, and the best daddy in the world.. Just ask these guys..
    Our daughter Ali, she's 9. She's fiercely opinionated and strong willed. She's a Daddy's girl, but the umbilical cord hasn't but cut from me, either. She's a gymnast, and proud of it. She spends more time upside down or turning flips than she does walking. She's crazy smart, and absolutely sure of it. She is my insufferable little know it all.
    Our son Dylan, 7. We lovingly refer to him as Chubs. Or Chubby. Or fat boy. Ahem. He is all boy, as you can see by his crazy wild energy. He has the highest pain tolerance of any child I have ever met. He plays soccer and does gymnastics, but truly he is a gamer, a nerd. He is an avid reader and loves to climb. Not to be outdone by his sister, he's a drama king, but to him, I'm the best mommy in the world.