You always hear stories about the preverbal "Crossroads in Life." Those times that you must choose to take a "Leap Of Faith" and go forward where it makes little sense, but you believe with all your heart it is just what must be done!
Well, I am there now… I have been
blessed that I have been able to do what I love for as long as I remember! To come to work and play! To surround myself with gifted, creative and incredibly talented people and make "Theater of the Mind" come to life every day since leaving college! I count myself as one of the fortunate ones as I did not plan this career, but consider, "It a God-Thing!" My career "happened" to me and I've been grateful the more than 20 years I've done it non-stop! More recently, getting up before the crack of dawn to start my workday…. It has just become my family's normal! My husband has been an exceptional father as he took the role of getting our 3 kids up, dressed, fed and ready with everything they needed for their school day… Getting up hours
early to begin his workday from home, to make this possible, just so I can make the most of my incredible career! For this, I am confident his self-sacrifice will bring amazing blessings!
For everything I love and celebrate
about my life in radio, I count myself most blessed with my family! Our 3 children Gentrey Grace, Beckham and Branick are my life! They have never
experienced the "stay at home mom" nor know what's it's like to have mom brush their hair and get them dressed before a school picture day.. Or
scream from the bottom of the stairs, "hurry you are gonna be late!" That has always tugged on me, as a traditional, old fashioned woman. However, I knew what I was doing was important as well as enriching and added to our family's financial security. So I committed to being the best at both roles, Mom and Working Mom, to the best of my ability. But we are facing a time in our
family where I know now I cannot do that any longer. At least not for now….
Our middle child, the 5 year old
Beckham has always stood out; from the day he was born. There was a last minute
complication in delivery that almost as a fluke turned into an Emergency C-Section. Praise God he was delivered healthy and safe in 30 seconds if you
can believe that! Though I had a more difficult comeback and in dramatic, movie-like fashion, crashed on the table and required a great deal more time to get back on my feet. Since that time, this little boy continues to stand out with his deep and soul searching questions, love for others and affectionate nature. He is the one kid that has always strived to do the "right
thing" and truly does care for others before himself… And HE IS ONLY 5! This all makes it feel even more cruel that he should suffer as he does. Lately he has been having these fevers… VERY HIGH FEVERS that come with few other
symptoms, in what seems like clockwork, about the same time every month. I finally became suspect, when he also mentioned unusual pains, almost like joint pains accompanying these fevers. He is completely normal and healthy in
between. Yet, I pushed and pressed on the pediatrician enough to finally get
him to help us in his medical knowledge to start connecting the dots. After about a year of this unusual pattern, where the poor little guy has missed almost every holiday celebration and many school days, we're getting closer to
an answer! We have begun the process with specialists now at Children's Hospital and thank God for their phlebotomists with an extremely gentle touch, we will know more about the ongoing treatment soon, for what looks like now to
be a childhood Rheumatologic Disease. The danger is the inflammation that can develop around major organs and the brain or the risk of damage to the kidneys if not treated soon and correctly.
The other night our family gathered
around his bed to pray. It actually has become a nightly ritual and a true blessing on those nights he tries to get comfortable with fevers that can go as
high as 106. To hear his family praying around him seems to help him relax and feel peace. But this other night, he kept bringing up thoughts of what he thought Heaven would be like and asked questions about what its like when children go
to Heaven early. I couldn't help feeling emotional and though I tried to hide it from him and the others, couldn't seem to choke back my tears to reassure him. I just said "though I would imagine the wonderful paradise it would be to adults and children alike, seeing our loved ones that have gone on before us and Worshiping and Glorifying our precious Heavenly Father in person,"
But that "I was confident, it would be a long time before he would go there, so we just needed to live like we know God would want us to on
earth." I looked across the bed to my husband and just wept. Saying I could never forgive myself if there was ever a time my time was cut short from
my family, for WHATEVER REASON! That those nights he can't sleep or is vomiting
from the high fever and I, feel the need to rush my time with my child who needs his mommy, because my alarm is going to go off any minute, can no longer be our "norm!" I knew from that moment on I needed more flexibility to be there for my family! I knew things would have to change!
I took to the internet to research
what to expect with this illness and it was scary. There was no longer time for
me to "hit the wall" in exhaustion or physically break down myself, because I am vanquished, stretching myself in so many directions. Plus my 10
year old daughter who should be able to just be a kid, finds herself even putting in extra time taking care of our 3 year old when she sees me going in
so many directions and though it has been a blessing to see that dynamic and knowing what an incredible heart she has and the loving relationship between all 3 kids, it just should not burden her as it has.
Knowing now from our doctors what's
ahead and where my focus truly needs to be, I have decided to relinquish my position in the morning at KTOK. It is one of the toughest decisions I have
made. I believe there are many exciting opportunities on the horizon in that
position and I have already learned so much in the job I never knew I'd have! I am grateful to the higher ups of our company and Bill Hurley who believed enough in my skills to offer that position to me. And Lee Matthews who has
spent time trying to help me transition from what I know in music and entertainment to news talk! Tom Miller and Mike Gannon and all of the folks
I've been blessed to work with there, have been such a joy to be around… Yes, really, even Tom Miller! I appreciate their understanding and hate to give them more "change to deal with" but am confident in their professionalism and excellence in news talk, no doubt will move on in the same incredible manner they are known for. You know what they say, "The only thing constant is change!"
That said, I am still continuing my
work with the company on going, in a part-time manner. That with the flexibility they are allowing me, will be still lending my voice to the
Twister's Midday and endorsements and sales calls for both Twister and KTOK, as well as remotes and live appearances, etc. as my schedule allows. So I am not gone… Just stepping out in faith and focusing on my family now.
I am doing the ol "Gary Smally" self talk to prevent the fear of the reality of things to cause me
doubt on what I know with all of my heart, is the right choice. We realize we may have to sell our home and move and even sell our cars, as well as making MANY changes to make this work! I am surrounded by people who care but say
things like "I can't believe you would give up your dream career!" Or "Won't this cause more financial stress to your family, causing more undue
stress at a time you can't afford to have that?" I think my own husband, though incredibly supportive and committed to doing whatever it takes for the health of our family, was a bit freaked out at first! But all I can say is, there are a very few times in my life I can remember this feeling of
conviction… Almost as if in my prayers and questioning of God, that I felt the
"Holy Spirit" Himself tapping on my shoulder and saying, "Trust Me!" So that is EXACTLY what I will do!
Thank you for your prayers for my family and in particular Beckham and his health! I hope this change will be temporary for many reasons but most especially because that would mean what I
already know in my heart… HE WILL BE OKAY!
So, I will be still around! Still blogging, doing social network stuff on Facebook, Twitter and all of the other ones… Especially in those alone times, when the house is still and I just want to connect and know we are not alone. Plus I hope to find out more about this childhood illness, in the hopes it can help others! I encourage you to call on me when you need me! I will do whatever I can. I just must commit to what I believe is right and in my obedience put my family first!
Thank you for your support!
Have you seen the video from the Navy Yard shootings? So sick and so sad...
We have tickets for Weird Al's concert at the Brady Theater in Tulsa Saturday, October 19th and autographed copy of his new children's book, "My New Teacher And Me!" Wanna win?
Just like, share and comment on this blog and we will randomly pick 5 names between now and Friday to win! Easy. Fun!