Tag Archives: wheelchair

Beautiful Tragedy…

15 Mar
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    The last picture I took before the birth of my youngest daughter.

    I wrote a blog back in January titled “Layers”, sometimes I just write to clear my mind and other times there is a specific thing I feel I should write about to not only remind myself but to help others. I told you about my hysterectomy and how my life was almost taken after the birth of my youngest daughter. Last night I got to meet one of the nurses who had a hand in saving my life and it was the most amazing experience. Two separate lives that were both impacted by this beautiful tragedy, two lives that were forever changed because of the power of prayer. 

    I struggled with my purpose in life after that day, I remember feeling like God was picking on me and how much I resented him for bringing me back. In my mind I feel like I was so angry because I got a glimpse of heaven and wondered why I needed to come back to such a dark and hateful world (I don’t remember anything about that day other than passing out and waking up). One painful heart ache after another is all I ever thought life would be and it was all I have ever known, I stayed stuck in a depression for over a year. There were times I was thankful and thought about my O Positive blood donor, the doctors and nurses that worked on me but never really thought about person. They had lives too, they seen trauma everyday and still had to go home not knowing if the person they were helping made it through the night. Not knowing if the person used their second chance to continue on the road that lead them where they were or if they had the courage to change. Can you even imagine working to save a mother of 5 children, one who was a newborn and another physically disabled? They worked so hard that day to make sure I was alive to be a mother to my children, a wife to my husband and a life changer to my world. The events in our lives can make us bitter or they can impact our lives in such a way that we do all we can to make sure no one ever has to experience the pain we felt. 

    When I started the Blue Slide Project (a wheelchair accessible playground at Parkside Elementary in Grants Pass, Or) I started coming back to life, I was still held back by my layers but had a spark of hope. I was leaving my house to go to meetings, forming friendships and volunteering in my community. I seen that although the world was dark and hateful, there were those who were trying to “overcome evil with good”(Romans 12:21). I met some really great people and have formed bonds that could not have formed without the tragedy’s in my life. When my brother passed away, I took one step back and felt like I was slipping again. I remember my husband telling me, “I know how much your brother meant to you, but you have a family that needs you to get better”. I was angry at first because he didn’t understand my pain, but it was those words that helped me get to where I am today. I woke up one day shortly after that talk and decided I can not let obesity take my life. 

    Last night when I talked to the nurse I had the opportunity to see how valuable my life was to strangers, how much they didn’t give up on me and how even to the point of death I was still “fighting”. After the doctors had done all they could to save my life, they informed my husband that they did not expect me to make it through the night. She told me how 3 nurses gathered in the hall after working on me for about an hour and prayed that my fate would not be death. The next day she peaked her head in the door to see that I had survived the night, and that is one of the things I remember as I was slipping in and out of consciousness.  We both stood their sobbing, and I began to thank her for what she did and for being a life saver. Of course her response was, “the doctors saved you, I didn’t”. My reply was simple, “yes, but you prayed”. So why would I ever give up on my life? Why should I ever feel like my work here is in vain? I won’t anymore, I cried all the way home thanking God for sparing my life and for a second chance. I was brought back to do good works and change the lives of my family and those around me. Although I am not perfect, and often make mistakes, I told God I would do my best from this day forward to be the light and carry hope.

     

    Here is a picture I was always ashamed of, every time I saw it I seen trauma I never seen a miracle although I knew there was one there. I remember that day, and days after, it was such a dark and lonely time because no one was able to convince me that my life was a miracle. I have a scar on my neck from the picc line in my jugular vein and was angry every time I saw it. Now its a reminder of hope and I will no longer be ashamed of my scar but celebrate in all I have overcome. I don’t want to sound boastful I am just so grateful that God is faithful to his word. When He says, “To all who mourn in Israel, he will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the LORD has planted for his own glory.” Isaiah 61:3 All Glory to God who saved me by his grace and gave me hope through all my beautiful tragedy’s, 

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    This was the day before I left the hospital, can you see the picc line in my jugular vein?

    Please if you are reading this, don’t let a tragedy wake you up, don’t let pain be what motivates you to change your eating habits or the things in your life that hold you back. I know a lot of this is repeats from previous blogs but I really want you to understand how much freedom I have received by letting things go. For Christ died so we could live, He carried our sin and shame on the cross so we could have freedom. The greatest beautiful tragedy of all time…

    Be blessed,

    Mona:)

     

     

     

     

     

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    My current before and after, a 151 pound loss in a little over 1 year.

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  • Blue Slide Walk and Weight-loss from 5/14-5/21 and 5/21-28

    28 May

    Last week my weight was 243.2 with a loss of 2.8 and this week I weighted in at 240.6 with a loss of 2.6 YAY ME!!!! It’s coming off slow and I am not sure if I can reach my goal of 150 by my sisters wedding but I am going to try:)

    Raising money for a wheelchair accessible playground is hard work, when you are a mom with 5 kids some days things can get overwhelming. Balancing family, fundraising and weight loss has been challenging, but I am determined to succeed in all areas of my life. I am very grateful for a husband who is 100% behind me and children who constantly tell me how proud they are of me. I hope I have made an impact in their lives and they grow up to be world changers!

    Preparing to walk this 33 miles is teaching me a lot about myself and how much I know that God is with me. During training I am finding that walking long distances is hard on your body. You can’t just wake up one day and say, “I think I will walk 33 miles”.  If is hot out your body losses more sodium when you sweat, I found out the hard way that if you don’t replace it there are consequences.  Food to refuel your body, water, wearing the right shoes and clothes are so important.

    I am not going to lie, I am so nervous and scared, but if I don’t try I will never know if it was possible and that scares me more. The pain I endure is nothing compared to what these children face every day. I hope that someone sees what are doing and helps us finish this playground. So this week as I prepare for the walk of my life with 5 of the greatest ladies I know, I am asking for you to please share this story. We are so close to Phase 2, the final phase of this project. I am looking forward to the day when ALL children can play together with no boundaries. Just think for a minute, if one day a note was sent home from school saying your child could not play on the playground, how would that make you feel? How many parents would be outraged? How many parents would work for change? When I noticed the school had pea gravel on the playground, it was like I got that note home from school. I will not rest until Isaac has the same opportunity to be a child, after all the only thing different about him is his wheels.

    If you live in Grants Pass and want to be at the finish line listen in on KAJO 1270  and KLDR 98 to find out where we are. We would love to see all our friends and family at the finish line:)

    If you would like more information on Blue Slide Project please visit us on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/TheBlueSlideProject or to make a donation mail checks to Parkside Elementary 735 Wagner Meadows Drive, Grants Pass, OR 97526. Make checks payable to Parkside PTA and note for Blue Slide.

    Please share these videos!!!

    http://youtu.be/hSmQchoTMyA
    http://youtu.be/a6OKmjUK9l8

    Thank you for your support!!!

    Mona

    Accessibility

    10 Oct

    Isaac at the Art Along the Rogue

    This past weekend  I took my little ones (ok, some are not so little anymore) downtown to the Art Along the Rogue, its a free community event showcasing Art in the street using chalk, there was also live music. The City closes the street and thousands of people gather to see the hard work of some 50 Artist. If you are feeling creative you can even purchase a square and paint your own ideas for $5 bucks. It was nice to get out of the house on a Sunday, we usually go to church, watch football and some of us get a nap. Driving by to find a parking spot, it looked very crowded but fun.

    As we entered the street I immediately noticed a wooden wedge (a ramp)  against the curb, why was this the first thing that caught my eye? When you have a child with a physical disability, accessibility is what usually prevents us from going to community events, school functions and even a family member or friends house. I really have to ask myself sometimes, “is the hassle worth it?” Seeing the wooden wedges against the curb showed me that the City thought about those who use wheelchairs or walkers. I really appreciated the accessibility, it was not just one ramp there were several. The live music was in the center of the street, we didn’t have to cut through grass or walk out of the way to find a ramp.

    In my eyes we have a long ways to go, but I have to always think about how far we have come. To be completely honest,  if Isaac was an able-body I don’t think I would have ever thought about accessibility. I didn’t have any family members or friends in wheelchairs and I don’t remember ever seeing anyone in my school who was a wheelchair user.  Now it seems to consume me, not to always complain about our issues, but to work together with organizations and community members to see change. It is so easy to sit back and wish things were different, but nothing would ever get done. If we do things like they have always been done, what do we learn?

    My son who thought the shark painting was the coolest thing ever, was ABLE to attend a community event like everyone else.  You might have just seen a wedge against the curb, but I seen progress and a boy independent. One day Isaac will grow up and move out of my house, I will not be there to help him down a curb 24 hours a day. I have to know that our world cares enough about the future of our country, not just the able-body children but children with ALL abilities.

    I think this was a victory!

    Mona