This is our's crazy, it's hectic, but most of all it's fun!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014


2014. What a year. Doesn't every one say that at year's end? You look back, think about the highs and the lows and vow that next year is going to "be my best year yet!"

Honestly, it's hard to say 2015 is going to be any better than what 2014 produced. I grew more as a wife, mother, and follower of Christ than any other year. Of course, 2014 is going to always be the year that Ryan got sick, but my gosh there is so much GOOD that happened this year.

We celebrated 2 big birthdays this year.

Claire Elizabeth turned one. ONE! We did a "You are My Sunshine" themed birthday and she was surrounded by family and friends that love her so much!
We also celebrated Wyatt Hudson turning 3! He is so in love with laundry that I went with a laundry themed birthday party complete with washing machine birthday cake. He was so excited. Three is such a fun age. Yes, they are complete threenagers, but my gosh they are so funny and they truly get their little personality. By the way, Wyatt's rocks. That along with his southern drawl is almost too much.

Easter cuties!

We went to the Ducks Unlimited banquet where Ryan's chapter was award 5 awards. I was SO proud that he was chosen as the Area Chairman for the state of Arkansas. Such a proud wife. He words so hard for the ducks so it's always fun to see it paying off!
The biggest change for me was becoming a runner. I decided right before New Years that I was going to sign up for a half marathon and for some bizarre reason Emma decided to do it with me so we embarked on a running journey. It was so much fun going and doing all the races together!

I even completed not one, but two half marathons! I love the me time and look forward to more races in 2015!
I attended some fun concerts- Bruno Mars, Justin Moore, Eric Church, but by far the best was Garth Brooks!

Wyatt attended his first VBS at our church this year! It was so fun getting to hear from him about what he learned that day.

We had kittens this year. We were completely irresponsible and didn't get our cat fixed before she got pregnant so ended up having 5 kittens on our 4th wedding anniversary. What a great present, right?! 8 weeks post-partum Polly got fixed. Never will that happen again. Yikes.

We enjoyed some time on the creek with our friends!!
We had the hardest 32 days of our life. It's easy to let Ryan's illness define us. Define our year. Yet, I don't really want it to. He (we) were so blessed during all this. I don't call it luck and I cringe the few times I have heard it called luck. Luck had nothing to do with it. It was prayers, God's will, and faithfulness that pulled him through it. It still blows my mind that people still come up to us and make comments or ask how he is. Strangers. People who don't know us, but felt the calling to pray for him. It happened today in Chick-fil-A and it still warms my heart. God is good all the time!

We enjoyed time at home. With Daddy. As a family of 4 again.

Halloween was enjoyable. We went with the laundry theme yet again. Wyatt loved it!

I had my 10 year high school reunion and it was so much fun! It is mind blowing that I have been out of high school for that long. I had so much fun seeing all my old classmates together and to get a night out after all we had been through.

We have wrapped up the year with time in Branson, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.

2014  has been quite a year.
I trust in the Lord more than I ever have. I pray harder for others than I ever have. I have an enormous list of people that I am so thankful were apart of our lives this year. I look forward to 2015 and what it has in store for us as a family. Here's to you 2015!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Turning 29

I woke up to Ryan trying to snap a picture of me. It wasn't going to be pretty. At all. I'm a snotty, stopped up mouth breather with puffy eyes. I'm a phlegm spitting, nose blowing newly 29 year old and yet I'm thankful. 

I'm thankful for the husband who was here with me this morning to try and catch the less than stellar beast he woke up to. Or actually, came to wake up since real life happens and the two sickies (me and Wyatt) were sharing a bed while the healthy ones (Ryan and Claire) were on the other side of the house. I'm thankful I had my husband to laugh with as I wrestled away the phone to delete the photo. I'm thankful I had a little boy crying that his daddy wouldn't leave for work, but rather would stay home with him. I'm thankful that although he didn't stay home and take care of us he was here to wish me a happy birthday before jetting off to make Wyatt "some money" and to bring him his $3 home per his request. 

I'm thankful for my two little babies. Who entertain each other while I curl up on the couch wishing away the crummies. Though it may be through screaming and tears I am thankful they enjoy playing together. 

I'm thankful for my parents who are always there for me and go above and beyond for anything I need. I'm thankful for the love they have for my children and the way they light up when they see them. 

I'm thankful for my friends, both real life and those who likely feel like they "know" me via social media. 

I'm blessed with so much at the age of 29. 

And, as a reminder, this email from Baptist came through this morning. 
They will be interviewing us for their #keeponamazing campaign soon and I just hope they use it. We sing constant praises to Baptist. I thank the Lord for placing us there and all the doctors and nurses who helped Ryan. It was perfect timing to receive the email and talk to the lady today. On a day when I'm just thankful to get to be celebrating with love from my family.

Facebook makes your birthday so special. The wishes you receive make your day. Or so I think. You do too even if you don't want to admit it. 

28 was my toughest year. It's obvious why. I nearly lost Ryan. The thought is still painful, but I'm a stronger person entering 29. 

I think I'm wiser, more emotional, and love harder than I ever did before. 

I'm ready to take on this year. To wrap up my twenties with a bang.  Here's to 29!

Monday, October 27, 2014

The Davis kids

My kids are my world. They truly are. I live and breathe to see them happy, smiling, and laughing. 

I also know that sometimes my kids are the very reason I want to poke my eyeballs out. 
Now hold on before you go blasting me. Maybe you haven't lived with a 3.5 year old dictator and his sidekick, the nearly 2 year old queen bee. Or so she thinks. We all know who runs the roost around here. Wyatt and Claire are two peas in a pod. 

Most days. 

They are sweet towards each other. Considerate. They share. Wyatt helps Claire out when need be. They are the best of friends. 

Most days. 

But then there are days when they want to do nothing but fight with each other.

It's actually comical because I can pick up on it in the first 30 minutes of our day. They declare war on each other and it typically lasts until nap time. I see the hair pulling (Claire), the biting (Claire), the shoving (Wyatt), and the toy yanking (both) constantly. I have even gone as far as to tell Wyatt "you deal with it" when I have reached my quota of separating. 

But then, I step in because things escalate quickly. I don't recommend that   avenue. 

As a parent you have to know what I am talking about. Right? We've all been there.

Say you know what I am talking about. 
Wyatt knows he isn't to take out every toy from all the toy bins, boxes, and baskets. He knows the consequence is he has to pick then all up. By himself. Which is the hardest thing ever because "there's just so many momma". Yah, no kidding kid. 

I was prepping dinner and by the time I was done I came into the living room to this. 

That would be nearly every "piece" of a toy Wyatt and Claire own. You know the tiny toys that have a hundred parts. Yes. I just looked at him and explained he would be the one to put each toy back in their bins. He was so proud so I mentally said whatever and went about sweeping some area of the floor for the seventh time that day. 

Let's just say there are times when arguing with a 3.5 year old is completely pointless. Completely. This was one of those moments. 

I was actually fine with it until he lost his bananas towards me because his mountain of toys became an avalanche.  Somehow that was my fault. Somehow I needed three reminders not to sit on the couch during his nap, nor was I to move his toys while he was taking a nap. 

Yes, sir. 

You never try and rationalize three year old behavior. It will never make sense to you and you will never win. Ever. 

And then there is our little girl. Our sweet little Claire. The little girl who lives to tell me how it is in her little chipmunk voice. 

"No mommy" when I try to hand her the milk that she JUST asked for. "No mommy" when she calls my name to get her out of crib and I stroll in there and try to pick her up. "No mommy" when I open the applesauce pouch she just politely asked please for. 

Some days I just feel like I can't win with that girl.

She is so particular about things. 

The apple didn't fall far from the tree with that one. She's bossy and Ryan loves to remind me that she is my clone. 

Some days are so hard with them. Hard. Like I don't even smoke, but I'm all I need a cigarette break over here. Ha!

Nonetheless they are cool kids. Cool kids that only get cooler with age. 3.5 is a blast. For the most part. Wyatt's just a little boy who loves to share his imagination and get you to laugh. The things that come out of his mouth have me dying. 

Claire is all girl. Sweet, funny, full of energy, and a busy body. She can destroy the house with one granola bar in 10 seconds flat. Impressive if you ask me. A pain in the butt if you ask Ryan. 

They are precious little souls who are growing up entirely too fast. They make me laugh and make me cry (out of frustration). They make me jump with joy and want to hide in my bedroom. 

They make me want to poke my eyeballs out, but they also make life worth living. 

Run for Ryan 5k and Soaring Wings Half Marathon

The Run for Ryan 5k was held a couple weekends ago and we had such a great turnout! Ryan was nervous that it would be awkward. I was brutally honest in reminding him that this race was intended initially to be what would support for our family had he passed away. A memorial. Instead, we were blessed to have Ryan there but most of all healthy. Those who came out to participate and support our family we are so thankful for you guys!! 

I started with a little "carb-loading" prior to the race. 

I'm happy to report that Ryan didn't feel the least bit awkward and it was so nice getting to see so many people that we love in one place. People who prayed constantly for us and then people who just like to run. I feel like the 5k was the last sentence in the chapter we have been writing since July. We are so blessed and again so thankful. 

Not long after we were home from the hospital I decided to sign up for a half marathon. I would have 6 weeks to train if I worked really hard. I have ran one before that and trained weekly for it. For it I was ready. For this one? Not so much. That 5k (3.1 miles) I mentioned earlier was my only "training" you could say. The desire wasn't there to get out and run. It wasn't looking very good, but I kept reminding myself as the day inched closer and closer that I signed up for this race to do something for myself. To have a few hours to myself and to be exercising. 

I loaded up on carbs all week and upped my water intake. I knew I could at least run 3 miles and then walk the rest if I needed to. It would not be easy, but I would be able to finish. 

I arrived and got ready for the race where I bumped into two girls who were just as prepared as I was. See, I am not alone! We hung out until the race started and ended up by the 3:00 pacer. That was my goal to finish under 3 hours. I hoped I could do it, but then I was crushed when my headphones would work. It should be noted I ran my first half without headphones and it was brutal. I tossed them about mile 4 because my phone lost its ever loving mind so I was near panic mode because I knew this time I NEEDED music. Well, after nealy 15 minutes of messing with my phone I finally turned it off and back on an viola, they worked. I was now ready. 

I started to race fine, slower than my usual pace but I knew I was only racing against myself. I ran for nearly 5 miles and then I switched to intervals which I had never done before, but I may be a convert? We will have to see. 

I was told the course was really hilly, but I wasn't that shocked by them and they weren't really that bad. Also it wasn't that hot to me either. Maybe I was just in a daze because it wasn't a "race" to me. I was just out enjoying myself admiring the beautiful real estate. For real, lots of daydreaming about houses and jammin' out to my songs. 

I became emotional three times during the race. The first when I realized why I had chosen to run the 13.1 miles. I wanted time for myself. I had devoted so much time in getting my husband better and back home and now that I was able to breathe and take time for myself this is what I chose to do. Secondly, the first time I saw an "in memory of shirt". I am affected by everyone I see now because although I didn't lose my husband, I feel that pain for them.  Thirdly, at mile 9 where a family had set up in memory of their daughter who had died in a freak accident.  The tears flowed seeing her pretty face and not even knowing what had happened. (Later that night I Google it and learned of her story.) I praised God during my run. Thanking him for the ability to run and thanking him for the blessings he graciously bestowed upon me and my family. 

I finished the race in 2:40. 

17 minutes slower than the one I had trained for. I was pleasantly surprised and hope to run this race again next year, with training and to beat my time. 

It was actually a lot of fun. I wish I could have convinced Emma to run with me because let's face, it's not near as fun running alone. However, I loved the time I had lost in my own thoughts. 

My second half medal! Yay!
Coming down the chute to the finish line!
Now to find another...

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Rainbows and butterflies

I like to lay it out all there as best I can and as honestly as possible. I like to think I am pretty successful at this. I also like to think that people can sometimes relate to me and that makes them feel more normal. Or, maybe that's what I keep telling myself to make myself feel normal. Either way, I am an open book so let's turn to another page

Ryan and I are meant for each other. By God's perfect timing he led us to one another, made us fall in love, wed, and produce two precious little nuggets. I think hands down the best compliment I have received since Ryan's ordeal is people telling me how they are so thankful for me being Ryan's wife. Is that vain? Probably so. But, I like knowing that I made a heck of a decision choosing him as a husband and that people agree with me. It also makes me want to recognize husbands and wives as I see fit and let them know that they are truly special and I am so happy that they found each other.

But it's not always rainbows and butterflies.

Lately, meaning post-illness, we have learned to deal with our new normal. When you are so use to having your husband do so much for you and then not be able to do anything at all you begin to carry a lot of weight. Weight that you didn't realize he was carrying all along as well as all "his" typical stuff.

There for awhile I had to do everything. It was emotionally draining, physically exhausting, and at times I struggled to have the grace and patience that he deserved. I said more "bad" words than I care to admit and at times I was downright ugly. But, Ryan was also less than pleasant. He was short, aggravated, tired, annoyed, and stretched to thin between me and the kids. It was a tough couple of weeks post-surgery. I wanted him to do more. I wanted him to get off his butt and fold clothes. I wanted him to get down there and play with our kids. I wanted him to do dishes without asking. I wanted him to do more. He wanted me to complain less. To not ask so much of him. To let his time with our kids be determined by him. He wanted me to back off. We would have great days. The days when we were on the same page and it was nothing but those rainbows and butterflies. Then, we would have the ugly days where we just needed time away, but were prisoners in our own home.

The beautiful thing about marriage is that your goal as a couple is to make your marriage work. To make your spouse happy. To make sure their needs are taken care of. To see that they are respected and most of all feel loved. To work through those tough days.

Ryan and I had our real knock down drag out when he brought me to tears. I had been really patient and bit my tongue a lot during those bad days. The days when I really wanted to say something back about his less than pleasant behavior. I wasn't sure how the aftermath was really affecting him, but I wanted to be cautious and respectful and hoped that as his energy levels picked up that maybe he wouldn't be as irritable as he had been. I gave it a month and he still had a short fuse. I had returned from Walmart when I let the flood gates open. There were a lot of tears on my part and I expressed to Ryan how it hurt that he was less than pleasant towards me. It was all those little tears that I had pushed down because I wanted to be strong. The sad part was he didn't even realize that he was being that way towards me. We talked it out and apologized and since then we have been a lot less snippy towards each other. I will never forget what Dr. Jones told us one morning before we were being discharged. We were eating breakfast and he told us he wanted to say something serious to us about when we got home. He said, "you don't know what she has been through and she doesn't know what you've been through so just keep that in mind when you guys are back at home." It is so true. I have no idea what Ryan went through emotionally or mentally. He doesn't fully grasp what I've went through either. However, we are both respectful of what has happened and we are constantly trying to figure out the boundaries.

Life altering events are just that. Life altering. I look at life so differently for my 28 years. I see Ryan with our kids, loving on them, making them laugh and my heart swells. I cannot wait for the day that they full grasp what a miracle God performed to have their daddy here with them. I try gracefully to remind Ryan that though it is tiresome for him that they want him to do everything when he is home, he needs to do it. They have needs that were not met in the nearly two months that he wasn't able to due to being in the hospital and the recovery of surgery. It's been a struggle and a work in progress. We are constantly improving our relationship, finding out balance, and annoying the crap out of each other. We are blessed to have each other and I believe we are slowly inching back to our regular selves. Now how about more of those rainbows and butterflies?

Monday, September 15, 2014

Part eleven: Wrapping it up

Being back home was so good. Ryan was weak, but having him back at home, resting on the couch, eating normal food was great. Our kids were happy. I was happy. Ryan was happy.
We knew that we Ryan would have to have surgery, but first a PET/CT scan of the adrenal mass would have to be done.  We went in the following Monday to get the scan done and waiting for the results a few days later.

We had just finished the scan here and you can just see how much better Ryan looked! Now we just needed to wait.
On the way home from the scan I let Ryan drive the last few miles. I loved being able to help him feel normal, but I can honestly say that now I know what all you parents feel like when you let your 14 year old with a permit drive. Yikes. He did fine, but I was a nervous wreck.

We continued on with normal life. Our kids started back to their little school a few days a week and Ryan got a special surprise from the Atlanta Braves. The autograph baseball was everything to him! It was pretty cool. The lesson here? Wake up and firmly believe you are somewhere else.

The scan came back Thursday and the only thing that lit up was the mass. If it happened to be cancer, which would only be known once it came out, it at least hadn't spread. There was nothing else in the full body scan that would be a cause for concern. This is when they began to seriously think that the adrenal mass had caused everything. The surgeon's nurse called the same day we got the scan results to set up an appointment. We automatically assumed that it would be a few weeks for the mass to come out, but when she said we needed to come in that next day for our pre-surgery appointment because surgery was set for next Tuesday. To say we were a little surprised was an understatement. Nonetheless we were ready! We headed down there Friday and did the pre-op stuff. We both left feeling comfortable about the surgery. Their biggest concern was Ryan being on a blood thinner and bleeding becoming an issue. They plan was for it to be a laparoscopic surgery, but if for some reason bleeding became an issue he would have to cut him open and quickly get the mass out. They switched him from a blood thinner pill to a shot which I was fortunate enough to get to do. Now, we just sat back and waited for surgery day to arrive. We passed time swimming at my parents, hanging at the house and going to church!

Tuesday arrived and I was extremely nervous. Ryan was as cool as a cucumber. He just kept saying that God had brought him through all that, why wouldn't He carry him through this. Yes, I agreed. But geez, someone needed to be at least a bit concerned! Let's just say I was less than pleasant that morning on the way. I bit Ryan's head off I don't know how many times, but finally confessed that I was just stressed out.
Ryan's friend made these. I loved it. There were lots of prayers going up for Ryan on this day.
We arrived and were taken back into a family room. I think they were scared we would take over the entire waiting room again. Ha! We all got to hang out until about an hour before Ryan was to be back in pre-op. Once they called us back, Ryan and I went back and I sat with him for nearly an hour before they were minutes from wheeling him back. I was nervous, still, but prayed constantly. Ryan, still, was just as chill as he could be and this was before they gave him any medicine. They were to start surgery at 1, but they actually didn't start until 2.
I knew that surgery was to last an hour, but I was knew that Dr. Kim was extremely thorough and would likely take a little longer. I was fine that first hour, but then I noticed myself watching the clock. About 3:30 Dr. Jones text me and asked if he was out yet? I said we hadn't heard anything and he said he was go check and them come see us. By 3:40 the man at the front desk said they were finished and that a couple of us could come to the room so they could meet with us. Me and my MIL went to the little consultation room. I'm not sure who was more nervous. I know both of our hearts were pounding and we felt like we couldn't breath. What felt like an hour, but more like 10 minutes, Dr. Kim popped around and smiled a big smile saying that everything was perfect and that he had done so well. Ryan's heartrate and blood pressure never missed a beat and his lost maybe a teaspoon of blood. Praise God! The mass was a little bigger than what they thought, but it can out so cleanly. They would be bringing him to recovery soon and as soon as they did I would be able to go back and see him.
I got to see him a short while later and he was so out of it. I stayed a short time and they said once they had a room ready they would let me know.
At 6 they moved Ryan to his room where we would stay just one night. He was in a lot of pain that night and definitely put his nurse to work. He realized the goodness of morphine, but the horridness of being on a liquid diet!
The next morning we were waiting for discharge and I caught him snoozing sitting straight up. See, morphine. Ha.

We knew that the mass would be sent to pathology to determine whether or not it was cancer. We got home and Ryan recovered there. He was still in some pain, but it wasn't anything that his pain meds couldn't take care of.
We received word on the mass.
An extremely rare adrenal tumor that wasn't cancer! We were so relieved! Now, Ryan just needed to fully recover. 

He quickly got back in the saddle at work. I think it was a week and a half and he was in the office for a few hours. 

We are truly getting our lives back on track. It seems crazy that two months have already passed. We are certainly blessed. We've loved having Ryan back home and feeling like ourselves. Our sweet kiddos are growing so quickly. 

We were fortunate enough to have a follow up echo, which was perfectly normal, and then dinner with Dr. Jones and his wife. It was so nice to get to have conversations outside of the hospital walls with the man I feel like we owe Ryan's life to. He will forever hold a very special place in our hearts. Pun intended. 

So here we are... Happy and healthy. 

Claire's got big shoes to fill. Her daddy has touched so many lives of those around us. Her daddy is loved by lots of people and someday I hope her and Wyatt are able to fully appreciate the kind, loving man that Ryan is. 
On the last note, I hope you will all join us for a fun run on October 11th!!! If you could only imagine the pure joy it will give me to see all of you amazing people in one place at one time!!
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