Back in the Real World

Sunday, May 24, 2009, eight and a half years after I began my collegiate journey, I graduated from Barton College.  It still doesn’t seem all that real to me and it would probably be less real if we hadn’t got rained on during commencement.  I guess I should re-phrase that.  We didn’t just get rained on – we were soaked clear through to the undergarments, we were dripping once we stood up, and our caps were curved under where the cardboard in them was drenched by the downpours of rain.  The good things about the rain – if there would be any – is that we were no longer hot, no longer nervous, we were more light-hearted.  It was hilarious.  We laughed the whole time it rained.  It was a welcome distraction to the speakers.  🙂  Sorry.  And the best part was that it stopped raining just in time for the presentations of degrees and diplomas.  I don’t think any of us were happy to have our pictures made looking like we did, but we were thankful that it stopped when it did.  And we weren’t really concerned with how we looked because everybody looked the same – hung out to dry – literally.

So now that all that drama is over, I find myself at a new threshold.  For the first time in almost 9 years, I am looking for a different job.  I have to say that it is a little unnerving, but I have let the whole thing go.  I do hope that I can say I will find one soon so I don’t have to go through the whole summer not knowing what the future holds for next school year, but I know that God has my hands in his future in His hands and I will be where I am meant to be.  I would love it if you guys would join me in praying for me about this whole job thing.  I have got to keep my head on straight about the whole thing.

So that’s what’s going on right now.  When I get pictures, I will post them for you guys to see.  John couldn’t take pictures with my camera because it got soaked, so I have to wait for copies from others.

Thanks for reading,

Mrs. Griffin, Middle School TEACHER  🙂

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Depression – ugh!

A few of you know that I have problems with depression.  For some, it is hard to understand what depression is all about.  It is not caused by one thing or a person.  It is a disease that has to be dealt with like any other.  If you have ever been around someone with depression, you know that there are broad mood swings, crying one minute, laughing the next.  There is sometimes pain, helplessness, some people are withdrawn and some people experience ALL of these emotions and more. 

Most days are good days and the days that are not so good, I have gotten pretty good at putting on a happy face to cover it up.  That works for a while, but eventually it catches up with you.  Depression can be debilitatingly exhausting.  Right now is one of those times.  For the last few days, I have really been having a hard time.  So hard in fact, that I have been having some chest pains.  I don’t want to go to the emergency room, so my plan is to see my doctor tomorrow.  I say all this because I need you guys to pray for me.  I know that prayer works, and I know that God will take care of me, but my sinful self doesn’t always allow me to have faith in myself that I can trust that faith 24/7.  Does that make sense?

ANYWAY, please pray that I can get through this down time I am having and that the doctor can help get me back on track.  I pray that God will place blessings upon my life that depression can’t touch.  And thanks to all of you for being vested in me.

Robin

Our God is an Awesome God!

I just received a phone call from mama – I didn’t want to answer the phone. 

All I can say is that God is an almighty powerful God and He is merciful and I am so in awe of His greatness.  They went in and took Amie off the respirator this moring and she is sitting up in the bed, breathing on her own and complaining because she is hungry!  The doctor says that he has never seen anything like it and that he cannot believe that this is the same girl he was in the room with yesterday. 

So many people were praying for God to work a miracle and He did.  The family is so elated with joy.  Phil went straight out and called mama!  Thank you God!  Thank you God!  I am so filled with joy, and thankfulness, and I have been humbled by the works of God.  I cannot believe that yesterday I was writing about today being the last day of Amie’s life.  What a “Doubting Thomas” I was.  Never again. 

Thank you all for your prayers for our family and for Amie.  God was listening of course.  We are so blessed to be a witness to His works.  Continue to remember her as she improves and strengthens.  We have been given a gift of more time with her.  We are so thankful.  WOW!!!

Update on Amie

Mama called me a little while ago.  We are not going to Duke tomorrow.  They are going to take Amie off the respirator.  The doctor is not sure how long she will be able to last after they remove it, but he is sure she cannot breathe on her own.  Amie has fought a long hard fight and tomorrow may be the last day of her life.  If it is, we all will be at peace knowing that she lived life to the fullest of her abilities that she embraced her life in every way she possibly could.  She knows we all love her and we know she loves us.  This is so hard for me because not only am I losing someone I love, I am losing her to cystic fibrosis…  UGH!!  I have to take refuge in the fact when she does take her last breath, that she will not be in anymore pain, she will not have to take any more medicine, she will not have to have someone pound on her anymore.  She will be in God’s safe arms, in His presence.  I pray to God for peace for her and all of the family.

Robin

How God Prepares Us

For those of you who visit What’s Up With Nick, this is going to be a duplicate post.  I thought it was important to put it in both places.

Some of you may or may or know that my mama and were a foster parents when I was growing up.  We had many foster children (about 21 I think) over the years they were able to do it.  One of the children, our second to be exact, was a baby that was given up for adoption.  It was a girl and we named her Amie.  Mama got to name the newborns.  I always thought that was cool.  ANYWAY, babies usually stayed until their six week checkup and then they went on to their adoptive parents.  In this case, that didn’t happen.  Amie was sick.  She was sick all the time.  She cried all the time.  We took her to the doctor and they couldn’t tell us what was wrong.  Then they sent us to Duke.  It was there that they told us Amie had cystic fibrosis.  Back then they diagnosis was not good.  They told us that Amie would not live to be a year old (unbelievers) and we began all the treatments to make her as comfortable as possible, we accepted the fact that she would not be adopted, and we resigned ourselves to the fact that she would proably die in our care.

We learned all about enzymes (back then it was a powder called viokase and you mixed it in baby food) that she had to take to digest her food, about chest pt where we had to beat on her to get all the mucous out, and all about breathing treatments.  Back then it was called a mist machine.  We, as a family, learned all about cystic fibrosis and how to treat it.

Amie was with us for almost 2 years when we got the call that there was a couple interested in adopting her.  We were filled with a mix of emotions.  Amie had become my sister.  We loved her and were caring for her with everything we were.  We didn’t want anyone taking her away.  BUT at the same time, we were thrilled to know that there was someone out there who was willing to see past all that ugliness of her disease and love her for the sweet child she was.  We got to meet the couple.  They were so nice.  They came to our house and talked to all of us.  We told them the hard truth of her daily routine, but to be quite honest, I don’t hink any of that mattered once they saw her beautiful face.  They did adopt her and we have kept in touch all these years.  One of my favorite memories is spending time with them and there family during summers in Wilmington where they live.  On April 28th, 2008, Amie celebrated her 29th birthday.  Praise God!!  What a wonderful example of God’s greatness and power.

Knowing this child, going through all of this with her, affected our whole family.  We all became advocates for cystic fibrosis.  We participated in all kinds of fundraisers over the years for cf.  When I was grow up, I worked for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation for about two years.  It helped to know about the disease.   Ultimately, knowing this child, growing up knowing her and her family, helped me to save Nicholas’ life.  There aren’t many people that can look back over the years and see the path that God led them down to help them in their lives.  I know that things happen for a reason, and knowing Amie helped prepare me for my adult life and what I was going to go through with my own children.  I am so thankful for that.  God is an awesome, wonderful God.  He gave the precious gift of knowledge for the future.  I am so blessed to be able to look back and see why I went through all those things.

Saturday night, I got a phone call from my mama saying that Amie had been airlifted to Duke.  All I know at this moment, is that she is in ICU, in respiratory failure and she is on the respirator.  I am waiting on a call from Carolyn, her mom, and we (my mama and I) are going up to Duke tomorrow.  Amie’s dad, Phil, is not in good health and cannot make the trip, so Carolyn is there on her own.  Pleae pray for this family.  I don’t know if she is eligible for a lung transplant, if she is on the list, or what.  All I know is that my sister is in the hospital and the outlook is not good.  I cannot imagine what they are going through at this stage in Amie’s disease.  I hope it will be a long time to come.

If this experience has taught me anything, it has taught me that God has a plan for all of us.  That everything MOST DEFINITELY happens for a reason and we are blessed to be able to marvel in His greatness.