Friday, June 29, 2012


Today, I am very excited because I had the wonderful opportunity to write a post for my dear friend Jacy's AMAZING blog: My Name is Jacy!! 

Since I started blogging, I have this delicious new habit of blog-hopping. I actually found Jacy through a really insightful blog comment I think I read on A BLOG ABOUT LOVE...I think, but it doesn't matter because Jacy's blog has become my very favorite one on the planet! It makes me laugh and cry and feel so empowered! Mostly, reading Jacy's blog will make you feel beautiful. She has had more than her fair share of trials and has come out SHINING. Going through some things that would leave most people bitter and distrustful, Jacy is a beacon of hope to anyone regardless of what tragedy has befallen, and she is just such an inspiration! I reached out to her after spending a lot of time on her blog and she reached right back. Its hard to believe I can feel like I have such a dear friend in someone I have never even met in real life! I really hope to meet someday.

After working on a post for her new series..."My Name is..." I am just flooded with love for Brian. I just love him so much. It's easy to get in a rut and get frustrated with our life right now. And when we are frustrated with life, it inevitably spills into our marriage. We have both been down, and probably a little short with each other lately, which is just not like us. We always treat each other very kindly and are always mindful to speak kind words, so these blue moods are really upsetting. But I am once again reminded that our attitudes are completely under our control, and writing this post and working on Brian's still secret anniversary gift have been beautiful reminders of how blessed we are to have the kind of marriage that we do.

I love Brian for so many reasons. Its so beautiful to be married to someone and to learn about the "real" them! So here are just a few of the reasons why I love him!

1. He seems serious, but really he is a goofball. This picture was taken before he got so good at hiding it. There is other, more recent evidence, however, I would get in BIG trouble if I posted it!

***UPDATE*** I just got PERMISSION to post the following picture!

2.  Brian really loves music. I know he gets this from his grandparents. Mostly Grandpa Johnson. Here he is practicing piano. He still does for a few hours every week. I love listening to him and I am proud of his progress. He hasn't ever taken lessons, but he is learning and he sounds so great!

3.  Brian is really romantic. I will say that in the hustle and bustle, as well as the comfort of married life, we have to make concious efforts to keep the "flame" in our marriage, but we both try a lot. The small and simple gestures mean the most.

4. Then there is the one thing that simultaneously inspires and infuriates me. He is THE most selfless person I have ever known. He would do anything for you regardless of whether he has known you for a moment or a lifetime. I really sincerely love that quality in my husband. He shows me a Christ like example of charity each and every day. The infuriating part is that people find it very easy to take advantage of this...and they do, but it is such an integral part of his character that I don't think people even notice they are doing it. At least I sure hope they don't.

Sometimes it is really nice to take a moment and be grateful for life and all of the craziness it entails. I am so thankful to be with Brian. I am so happy that we chose to be together. I love being his wife and taking care of him.

Love, Lindsey

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Summer Daze

It's hard to believe summer has just officially started because it feels like it's about half over. I guess technically for me it is since I will be back in school before I know it.

A lot of fun things have happened so far. My parents took Alissa and I to see Greg Laswell at the beginning of June. I was glad to have them drive us because I was tired. I left straight from work to meet them at the house and then we took off and turned around after the show and came back. Alissa and I got to meet Great which was fun. She won tickets and back stage passes on a Facebook contest. It was a fun night. So fun, that we decided to try to see Greg and with his wife Ingrid Michaelson!! Who happens to be one of other very favorites.

Last Saturday, my parents and Brian and I went to Springfield to the Lincoln museum. It was a lot of fun. We went to Pease's Candy afterward which always makes me laugh since my Gram's last name was Pease. Then on the way home we stopped and ate at a Cracker Barrel where We all ate some delicious food. I consumed over 55g of carbs that day. I don't regret it. I felt so good afterward. We didn't get any pictures that day unfortunately. I am sad because I have been trying to be concious of capturing more memories in photos.

This week I was really having one of those weeks where one thing after another seemed to go completely wrong. I was so frustrated on the way to work Wednesday and I called my mom, like I often to, to vent. She is a great listener. I really think it is so interesting how God tosses you a lifeline when you need it the most. I was stressing about what to maybe do for work while I was in nursing school, or if I should even work at all. Not ten minutes after I got off the phone with my mom and into work, my old boss called me and gave me some options for returning to work for him while in school. We had talked about me going back for a long time. Almost a year really, and it looks like it is finally going to work out and actually exceed  my expectations. I felt so lifted after that phone call. It will be nice to recoup some of our savings and have something steady and familiar for me to rely on. I do have some feelings of anxiety over the fact that I won't be with Brian as much when school starts and he returns to work. I will still have all my nights and weekends free and I am grateful for that, but I just worry about him. The fact is, we can't stop living our lives and get trapped in the worry cycle. Its important for me to stay busy and for Brian to get back to work. I just pray all the time that his cancer stays at bay and he won't have any more seizures. I am so worried that he will get exhausted back on thirds and have a break through seizure. Honestly though, I can't control if he has more seizures or not. That is hard for me to come to grips with.

Anyway, Brian just got home. We have had a busy couple of days, I just want to hang out with him for a little bit. :)

Monday, June 18, 2012

Father's Day

Yesterday was Father's Day.  We got to go up to my mom and dad's in Henry on Saturday to celebrate. I got an awesome present for Dad, which did not come in the mail until today so I still can't mention what it is, but I know he will love it.

Its hard for me to pick from all of the good memories I have of my dad, but he has always been one of my very favorite people in the whole world. I was lucky enough to grow up with a dad that was just a big kid. We played all the time. ALL. THE. TIME. I have a lot of old videos from when I was growing up that really show what a fun time we had, but one of my very earliest memories of Dad is when he would walk me up to the car dealership by our house growing up. He would either carry me, or I would ride my big wheel, but when we got there I always wanted to get in the back of the trucks. It wouldn't have mattered if there were three trucks or thirty, I wanted to get in the back of every single one. I am sure that probably annoyed my dad, but I never knew it. He would patiently lift me from truck bed to truck bed until we had seen them all.

On nights when my mom worked Dad and I would crank up music videos way louder than Mom liked when she was home. Or sometimes we would make the trip to Chillicothe to see a movie. We saw all of the 90's Disney movies that way.  Alissa didn't come along until I was almost nine, so my dad was my best playmate. He played blocks with me tirelessly. We had this game where we would build roads for toy cars with the blocks and then when it was time to put them away, we would pick a color and race to pick up all of that color of block and dad would always hide one and we would fight for the last one. Every time. Or hide and seek where I hid in the same spot in the closet every time and Dad would pretend not to know where I was and look for me for ten minutes with my anticipation growing every minute that he would find me. Or when he pretended to be a Velociraptor and broke his toe jumping onto the coffee table. All of these games ended in serious tickle fights until I couldn't breathe. Except the dinosaur incident...that ended with Dad rolling on the floor trying not to shout expletives and with tears in his eyes.  And when I got a little older and had girlfriends over Dad made a habit of scaring the absolute daylights out of us at every opportunity. We always knew it was coming. We would be swimming in the pool, or coming back from a bikeride, and he was out there, in the dark, waiting for the perfect moment to spring out and send us screaming into the house where my mom would laugh because he used to do the same thing to her.

My love of science fiction and good music came from my dad. To this day if I need a quick attitude adjustment I just blare some ELO, Hall & Oates, or Bowie. That will always take me right back to lazy Saturdays with my dad.  We loved shows like Quantum Leap and cried together during the series finale when we realized Sam never made it home. And when X-files came out, Dad and I would watch it every Friday night.  He introduced me to authors like Ray Bradbury and J.R.R. Tolkien whose books got me through those horrible junior high years when I felt like I couldn't relate to anyone. I loved talking about The Lord of the Rings series with my dad. I remember many times when I would be awake late into the night reading and I couldn't stop myself from creeping into my parents room to wake dad up and tell him about which exciting part I was at. He would come out and sit with me at the kitchen table and talk about it with me, even though he was tired and had to get up early for work.

Or those times even after I graduated from high school when I would see a twenty dollar bill on my dresser because my dad said "you should always have a little cash on you." Even last week, I was making popcorn on the stove and had a memory of my dad doing that with me. I thought it was so neat, and it does taste much better that way.

I am so grateful that I still have my dad with me. I am grateful every single day for the love and sacrifice of both of my parents. I know I don't have kids yet, but the older I get, the more I come to understand just how much they love me. My dad says a lot that he wishes I was little again because he feels like he didn't do enough for me, but I am just tearing up as I write this because from my little girl perspective, I had the very best Daddy in the known universe. I couldn't have asked for a better man to raise me, and I couldn't ask for a better friend today.

I am proud to be your daughter and prouder to call you Dad. I love you.

Sunday, June 10, 2012


I have been thinking a lot about friends lately. And I think they are kind of like apples. Sometimes you get a really mushy one and you think the whole bag is ruined, but really all you have to do is toss it and realize how perfectly good the rest of them are.  I have been trying to decide what to do with a friend who hurts my feelings and I just can't seem to let it go. I have gotten a lot of good advice though, and I think the best thing to do is just distance myself from any contact with that person, even facebook, because that is a place where passive aggressive people can really be allowed to hurt your feelings and get away with it.

Enough about that. What I really wanted to write about was how grateful I am again for such good friends. Last week on my birthday, I got a call from an old bookstore friend, Matt Hajny. This man has the uncanny ability to remember birthdays and he called me especially to tell me he was thinking about me on mine. It wasn't a long phone call, but we had a chance to catch up a little bit and he was asking how Brian was doing. I filled him in quickly and told him I was thinking about this other woman we worked with, Angela. Her husband also had brain cancer and I just have been wondering how she coped with some of the stresses. I would really be interested in getting her perspective because I feel like our situation is very unique.  Well, lo and behold, Friday I got a text from Matt saying that he went to dinner with Angela and got her info to me and mine to her so we can talk. He is just so thoughtful that way. My friends are coming up with unique and special ways to support us and I am so appreciative.

The Peoria Bach Festival was this past week as well. Brian and I went to both parts of the Christmas Oratorio Friday and Saturday. Matt came with us last night. Interestingly enough, on Friday, an older gentleman sat next to me and I knew I recognized him. I figured it was from the doctor's office where I used to work, so I asked if he was ever a patient there. He said in fact he was and he was just their that very morning. He told me his name and said that he had knee surgery four months ago and was seeing Dr. Chiou due to some swelling. This didn't really make sense because I haven't worked there since 2010 when I got married. Well I thought and thought, and then remembered that I knew him from a poetry class I took at ICC. At the end, I told him that is where I actually knew him from. It was a coincindence that he had seen Dr. Chiou. He was a very insightful and well traveled poet, and he had a great voice. I loved listening to him recite his work. We had a nice chat and then saw him again last night.

But the highlight of my whole weekend was last night when we got home. I was checking facebook before bed, and I saw a picture Amy had posted. She lit a luminaria for Brian at Henry's Relay for Life. I was just so touched. My eyes welled up with tears as I showed Brian the picture.  People always say that with true friends, no matter how much time has passed, you can always pick up right where you left off. That is so true to me with a couple of my very dearest friends. I don't see Amy as often as I wish I did, even though I see her more now than I had in the years right after high school, but I just know we will always have that kind of friendship.  And those few friends always pull a little closer to me in times of need. I think you know who you are. There is a picture of almost all of us from my little wedding.

Amy, I am so grateful for you.

Love, Lindsey

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Today is my Birthday

Well, I turned 28 today. It looks stranger reading it than it even did saying it all day. I don't feel much older than 20. I guess that is how it works. I was lucky enough to celebrate with my family in Henry on Saturday. It was my parents, sister, brother-in-law, Brian of course, and my dear sweet friend Joe, who might as well be family. My cake was huge. It was a chocolate-fudge-filled-chocolate-cake-with-chocolate-fudge-icing. I have never met a chocolate cake I couldn't handle, but this one was ALMOST too much! Also, I got a haircut from Amy and I just love her so much. She did a great job as always, and I was proud because I didn't even cry while I was filling her in on our last few months. When I got up to pay, she wouldn't let me. Then I started crying. I am just so grateful to have good friends. I am so inspired to be a better friend every day because I really don't even know where I would be without the loving kindness of my truest friends. This experience has really helped me to sort out who my true friends are and I am happy to report that I am so blessed to have so very many.

I have to admit, this is a really sad birthday for me.  I just don't feel like myself.  When I blew out my candles I made a silly wish for Brian to be cancer free. I know it is a childlike thing to do, but I know those wishes can come true. The years Brian and I were apart, I would always wish we could find our way back to each other and we eventually did.

As sad as I feel some days, I am very much overcome with gratitude for the blessings of friendship which surround me.

Usually, I am really overcome on my birthday with how many people send kind regards for the day. Just to know so many people are thinking about me always comes as sort of a surprise.  But this year, I wasn't surprised at all. Ever since Brian has been sick I have been so overcome by the out pouring of love and support that has been shown to us. I simply don't have the words to express how very grateful I am for all of the ways we have been shown love today and always. The prayers, calls, texts, cards, gifts, hugs, listening ears, and shoulders to cry on have all sustained me.

I spent most of tonight working on my anniversary present to Brian, which is a secret since he reads this, but I can't wait to show him. We did get to go out to Johnny's for dinner with a gift card from my family. Thanks mom, you are off the hook this time!

I am tired and have a big day tomorrow, but please know that I wouldn't be where I am today, right now, without my dear friends.

Love, Lindsey