Sunday, May 17, 2015

Too Long a Letter

Dear Elder Dooley,
First of all there are only 13 days of school left.  17 days until school is out (including weekends). We are all getting very excited about summer. But that also means I only have 17 days until The Lion, The Witch and Wardrobe opens.  I guess I better really start working hard. There are a lot of costumes left to work on.

This has been a tough week. We have been battling sickness and Dad has been working day and night on his final papers for classes. It started out with Cora getting sick last Saturday. We really hoped she would be better in time to go to her Camp Makiki field trip but sadly she was not.  I woke up on Monday feeling terrible and fell right back asleep.  Cora and I stayed home together all day and slept and did little else. By afternoon I was feeling better and so I went surfing with Dad and Kirkham and Afton for FHE. Dad went back to work after to do his paper and I stayed up and caught up on housework. I really expected to wake up feeling great the next morning. Tuesday I again woke up feeling terrible and again slept most of the morning and Cora again stayed home with me.  I really hoped to sneak into class but ended up having to skip my class. Strangely, again by evening I was feeling better (or better enough) and went out surfing.  It really surprised me how good I felt while out surfing--totally forgot I was sick at all--but that didn't last long once I got home.

Once more slept most of the day Wednesday until I had to roust myself for some after school appointments for the kids.  One of those was a visit to Dr. Smith for Cora. She had strep throat and was prescribed antibiotics. It was a really tough decision that morning not to send her on her field trip.  She had packed the night before and was totally ready to go because, like me, every night she was feeling fantastic. She had prayed to know whether or not she should go on the field trip and during the night woke up three times with a terribly painful sore throat. In the middle of the night she made the decision not to go on the field trip the next morning. I was so proud of her ability to pray and receive an answer and comfort from the spirit.  Though it was a difficult decision and she really wanted to go she had the reassurance that she should stay home and never looked back on the decision with doubt. After starting her antibiotics we got her popsicles, s'mores ice cream and a movie and made the most out of her sick days.

I made myself go into work on Thursday and Cora came along with me.  Though she was well enough to go to school her class was gone on the overnighter so she got to play at the costume shop instead.  She had fun working with my class. Thursday night we helped dad with the Senior dinner and then he went back to work on his paper.

Friday Cora went back to school and I was able to get up at a normal time.  I headed out to turtle bay to catch a few morning waves before work. I was hoping to get into the shop by 9. That didn't happen.  I locked the keys in the car and had to wait (surf) until dad could come out and unlock it for me.  It was so inconvenient for him and I felt really bad because he had taken the day off to finish up his big paper. But it was nice too because I was able to surf longer than I had originally intended and the waves were really nice. There's always a bright side.

I finally made it into the shop at noon for what was left of a day of work.  I had intended to go in every day this past week to get ahead of the game on costumes so I am praying that I will be able to get everything done in the next 17 days. At 3pm on Friday I was finally feeling on  top of my game: I had just gotten home from a productive few hours in the shop, Cora was feeling fantastic, the kids had fun plans for the evening. Once everyone was off to their activities and parties I was going to head back to the shop to catch up. At 4 that was all shattered when dad called from work in pain.  He had another kidney stone! Another stone and his huge paper was due that night at midnight! What else could go wrong?!

I rushed over with his prescriptions and we called for a priesthood blessing. Brother Johansen was one of the men that came over.  I so appreciated their support and help.  Dad was still in a lot of pain but he was able to regain focus and continue working on his paper. He didn't get home until 4:30 in the morning.  Thankfully the teacher accepted his late submission.

The bad luck curse gratefully was broken (at least for me) on Friday night. I went hiking with the Young Women on Saturday and have continued to feel better. Cora is doing great now.  Dad is still in a lot of pain.  I brought him home after Sacrament meeting today because you know how he gets when he is on pain meds :-).  He really needed to be lying down in bed.

I thought it was funny when I went visiting teaching today and found that the section I had underlined LAST week to share with our sisters was this: "
I know by personal experience that the joy of living in righteousness and abiding in Christ can continue despite the tribulations characteristic of mortality. Ultimately, these tribulations often enrich, refine, and guide us to a deeper understanding of the purpose of our existence here in mortality and of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Indeed, the fullness of joy can only be achieved through Jesus Christ." --Elder Jose Texiera, Seeking the Lord, April 2015
Funny because after a trial filled week--small trials I know, but trials nonetheless--my eyes were opened today to the joy of being healthy again and thankful to my Heavenly Father for giving me a body that can repair itself and for a family and job that give me purpose and motivation. Every difficulty can give us strength and make us stronger through the Lord Jesus Christ.

As I wrap up this short novel I jut wanted to let you know that our family goal this week is to, as Afton puts it, #finishstrong.  This includes recovering from this week's health issues and completing this year's school work. We broke that down into two more measurable sub-goals that were school specific: 1)get all assignments turned in--this will require checking with teachers for missing assignments; 2)put schoolwork first. Hopefully you can find a way to apply this goal in your own work too.

We love you tons and wish you the best in your work this week. Be strong! (See Haggai 2:4 and Daniel 10:19)

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