Right now is such an emotional time. There’s lots of up and downs for all of us. We are living on a roller coaster of emotions around here. So when I say “heart ache” it’s really a double meaning of sorts. However, on Father’s Day, Jaret jokingly said, “Would it be wrong to have a heart attack on Father’s Day?” Not funny. He was having severe chest pains with pain in his back. We are on the “no-nonsense when it comes to heart pain policy”. So we took off to the hospital, the same one that saved his life back in ’17 when he had his first heart attack. I dropped him off at the E.R. entrance and went to park the car. There was a simple, “See you in a minute….” and I drove off. I parked the car, grabbed my mask, and quickly made my way to the entrance. A security guard stopped me, took my temperature, accosted me with hand sanitizer, and then sent me to the front desk. I told them my husband just went back and I wanted to go back with him. Two very loud and not very nice nurses said that due to the resurgence of Covid, NO ONE was going back. I started to make my way to the waiting room and they quickly told me I wasn’t allowed to be ANYWHERE in the building! I didn’t know what to do. How could the last thing I said to him be such a casual quip? I sat in my car for a few minutes until he texted me and told me he was back in the waiting room until they could get a room ready. I quickly ran to the window and tapped on it until I got his attention. There we were, him inside the hospital with his mask on with IV’s already in and me outside in the heat of summer in Phoenix, friggin’, AZ with my hand on the window so he knew I was there. Nothing could have pulled me away from that window.
I stayed there with him until they came to take him back to his room. They were keeping him and I had to drive away. I made the hard phone calls to the kids and family and let them know what was happening. I was so thankful for our oldest daughter, Meagan, that stayed with the girls while I was at the hospital and then stayed the night with us. I was a mess. All of the thoughts of “what if’s” and “what will happens” kept me in a place of shaking anxiety. I prayed to God that this was not going to be how this story ended. We have been married 24 years, together since we were 15 years old. THIS WAS NOT GOING TO BE THE END of our story. I had heart ache, too. I missed my husband and just wanted to hold his strong hand. I needed to be with him and make stupid jokes that he probably wouldn’t laugh at. We don’t work well without the other one. I struggled to pray for peace, but our God is a loving and perfect Dad and He gave me His peace because He knows my needs before or even if I can’t ask for them. I fell asleep and slept alone….. in perfect peace.
After lots of tests were run and more medicines were given, the Dr’s decided he could come home while we worked out what was causing him heart pain. Thankfully, it wasn’t another heart attack and he didn’t appear to need more stents at this time. It seems that his heart was working too hard and having seven metal straws in your heart to keep it pumping blood can cause pain. Too much angina equals more pills to take on a daily basis. Every week I make up my 43 year old husband’s pill box with his 15 pills a day. 15 pills a day! That doesn’t even include the shot he gives himself in his abdomen. I have a huge love/hate relationship with medications. (That is a blog for another day.) But on this day, I am thankful for the medicine that is keeping his heart pumping so I can reach for his strong hands another day.
After this little blip of too much excitement, I had to get back to work packing up our house and fixing up our new RV……. We have less than 3 weeks before this adventure begins. We are not promised how much time we will have together in this lifetime. Now, more than ever, I realize how important this life change is. I pray that less things and less stress, equals less heart ache and more peace.
We are now unemployed. What on earth do we do now? We are so thankful and blessed that Jaret’s company offered him a severance package and 6 months of health insurance. With him having a serious heart condition, myself having MS, our children being blind, autistic, and having ADHD, medical insurance is a necessity. My mind was now racing with how long this money would last? Could Jaret find another job as a power plant manager here and allow us to keep living in our home? Do we really want to keep living this same way? It took some time for the fog to lift, but we began to see what a huge blessing this could turn out to be. We were given the opportunity to to start over.
I remember sitting at the dinner table together as a family and sipping my glass of wine. You could already tell the air in the house was lighter, smiles were starting to form, and daddy was beginning to be silly again. This felt nice. Then I heard it slip out of my mouth as if someone else were saying it. “I have a crazy idea! What if we sold everything and bought an RV and lived in it full time until God showed us new direction for our lives?” “HAHAHAHAHA, wouldn’t that be crazy???”
Jaret and the kids definitely didn’t see the fun and adventure in my idea at first. My husband is the sensible one. He’s the logical and thought-out one. His mind was racing with the details that such a life change would take and it didn’t seem feasible. The girls only thought of how much loss that would bring. So, I let it go. After all, I’m the impulsive one and often don’t think of the long term ramifications of my ideas. I like to blame my Cherokee Indian heritage in me for my love of adventure. I like to say, “the wild is calling me”. 😊 Sometimes the wild calling ends up with, “Oh no, what did I just do?”
I don’t think it took much time before we were throwing the idea around a bit. How much money would we save? What would we do with the few personal, important things? Where does mail go? What on earth do we do with all of our animals? Can you possibly sell a house during a pandemic in the heat of summer in Phoenix, AZ? We had just finished remodeling our kitchen and other rooms in our house. We had put so much of our love, sweat, and tears into this place. It was supposed to be our forever home. Jaret had just bought the lumber to begin building the tree house of all tree houses for our girls, but also our grand babies. We were going to sit in our rocking chairs and watch our horse graze in her pasture while the grand babies played in the amazing sunset. We had a plan. This plan was safe and we could see it clearly. But living full time in an RV? This was not something that you could really plan out. I couldn’t see a future ahead. A fun, wonderful vacation, of course I could see that! But what happens when you want to go “home” and get out of the RV and sleep in your own bed? Where would “home” be? Lots of thoughts were flying around. The good, the bad, and the RV lingo. Did you know “boon docking” is an actual word?
I soon found Jaret looking at Rv’s for sale. What could we buy with the severance check and have enough money left over to live on? Soon we find out that because of the Covid pandemic, all RV’s are bought up! Who knew that Covid = no motorhomes available in your price range. Ugh. I remember pulling up to a dealership and looking at this model that rivaled, A Christmas Vacation’s Uncle Eddie’s RRRRRVVEEEE. I walked into it, I smelled it….. and I walked out of it. My sweet husband stayed in there and talked with the guy. By the time he got into the car he could see that there was no talking me into this, so we moved on. I could tell my precious Analise was not buying this idea AT ALL. I asked her what would need to happen to make this an ok adventure for her? She said if she could have her own little space it would help. A place to put her books and a few important things. So, as if finding a nice RV that smelled like no one was killed in it at our price wasn’t hard enough, now we need to find one with a 2nd bedroom. “Lord, I give even this into your hands.”
Even though the RV idea was mine, I wasn’t totally sold on it myself. Like I said, I often come up with crazy thoughts and later think, “Who on earth came up with that idea?” One night in particular I was in a bad place. I went to bed early and just laid there and cried. I was done with having to be strong and think positive. I just wanted to cry and think about all that I was about to lose. Did you know that the enemy loves that place? He loves to see us miserable and weak. However, the greatest thing about being married is we fight the enemy as a tag team partnership. Jaret came in to check on me and he prayed over me. He reminded me that God knew exactly what we needed and that He hears our hearts. He is a good father that wants to give good gifts to His children. I was able to hold on to those truths and fall asleep in peace. But I was only asleep for a few moments and Jaret came running back in. He was pretty excited and told me he had found it! He found our new home on wheels! I could barely see but was able to make out the bunk beds in their own little space. God had answered the heart cry of my baby girl. They were going to have their own little space. The next adventure was waiting……. I’d call on it first thing in the morning. 😊
Hello. My name is Jenny Sullivan. I am a 40-something mother to 4 kiddos (Our oldest 2 are homegrown and our youngest 2 daughters are adopted from Ethiopia and China). I enjoy horses, gardening, and writing. I love to laugh and I hope I can add humor into your day by reading my blogs. I believe God loves to see His children smile. My life is not an easy one, we face challenges of all sorts daily. I hope by blogging, I can share these experiences with you and take you along on this Perfect Adventure with me!