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In Time for the Crisis

In my prior blog, I described how God took care of me in Ohio, a place I reluctantly moved to. I had cried when I landed at the Ohio airport – cornfields everywhere, no mountains, no forests, no hills. And far, far from my family. But, God met me there.

Now I want to tell you how God led me back to Bellevue, just in time for a family crisis. After my daughter Christine was born in Ohio with many special needs, life become very complicated. I had missed home before, but now I felt it even more strongly. I visited Bellevue for Christmas and again for my 20th high school reunion. Each visit cemented the thought, “I’ve got to get back here, to my roots, to my family.”

Then in June of ’95, I felt God say “yes” to my desire. My husband agreed to a move and our whole family uprooted and came back to Washington. Everything went smoothly. My employer Farmer’s Insurance permitted a transfer. My husband flew in on a short trip and immediately found the perfect house in Redmond. After we arrived, both kids settled quickly into school. Support services for Christine were much better than in Ohio. And through everything, I had this amazing peace. God was doing it.

And it was wonderful to reestablish a close connection with my mother. We could see each other regularly and go out for coffee. Christine got acquainted with her grandma. We played cards and hung out and just got to know each other well.

Then in the summer of ‘96 my mom and her husband made a three-month road trip to Alaska. During that trip, I remember my mother saying I'm just not feeling well. Maybe menopause acting up again? I'm bloated and just feel kind of yucky. Soon after they returned home, we were at church one day and she again said I'm just not feeling very good. I encouraged her to go get a checkup. She did and found out that she had ovarian cancer. That started a very long, scary journey – surgery, chemo and a very risky procedure, experimental at the time, stem cell transplant.

But the amazing thing was that I was already back home to stand by her. I had been right here in Redmond, reestablishing a relationship with her, and settling my family for over a year and I was ready to help her. That was God’s beautiful timing.

At the same time, my mom’s mom was in her ‘90s and suffering from extreme Alzheimer’s. She lived near University Place in Tacoma, a good long hour from our base in East King County. My mom felt bad that she couldn’t take care of her own mother, while going through the months of surgery and treatment.

But God provided for that also. My sister lived in Puyallup. She stepped up, and said, “because I'm located closer to Grandma, I can go over and help her out, talk to the nurses and help her with her medications and stuff like that. We’ll split the care -you with Mom and me with Grandma.” Through this process, my sister and I, who had really grown apart, came together to help the family and became close again. Another blessing from God!

God knew all that was going to happen. He could have said, “your mom’s dying. You need to get back there.” But He didn’t. He just gave me peace about coming back to Bellevue and Redmond. He paved the way so we were all ready for the family crisis. And He gave us that extra blessing, which had never entered my mind, of reconnection with my sister. My mom lived another seven years, outliving the most optimistic medical estimate of five years. God is good!

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