Tag Archives: God

What an Exciting Day!

13 Jan

So look what came to Charlie in email.

Dear Mr. Shively,

The American Kidney Fund appreciates your interest in our Fifth Annual Kidney Action Day on Capitol Hill. We would like to invite you to join us March 2014 in Washington, DC.

We hope you will accept our invitation. Please email Nina DiPadova to accept your invitation by January 13, 2014. Once we hear from you, we will begin to discuss travel and lodging information. Please note, we will coordinate your travel for you to arrive into Washington, DC the morning of March 4, 2014 and begin advocacy training that afternoon.

Because of your advocacy efforts, we continue to create awareness and help make a difference for individuals and families with, or at risk of developing kidney disease.

Sincerely,

Nikia Okoye

Director of Government Relations

SO WHAT DO YOU THINK CHARLIE’S ANSWER WAS???   YES!!!!!!!!!!  He is so excited. He’s never been to the capital before.  He keeps saying “we’re going to Washington”  Such excitement!  It’s going to be a fun trip as well as  a learning trip. He is looking forward to getting to know other advocates and hopefully having the opportunity to meet with some of the members of congress and let them know about the things that are a problem for kidney patients and their families. I am very proud of Charlie. He has been given several opportunities to speak with in the last few months and has done very well each time.  What better person to be an advocate than someone who has first hand knowledge of the disease and what it can do to you and to those you love.  Please keep him in prayer as this time draws closer.  We actually also got a phone call from the American Kidney Fund as we were on the way to go get Charlie’s books for the new semester which will start next week.  

We did make it to the school and were able to get the books and all of the supplies he should need (at least everything I could think of) to the tune of $446.  Books are SO EXPENSIVE.  I sure hope we use them ALOT this semester.  One of the books was $167.  I looked for the gold leaf or the engraved pages or something, but nope, it’s just a paperback text book. We are both looking forward to the adventures that this semester will bring.  We know there is going to be a ton of writing in the English Comp class but Charlie  made it through Comp 1 with an A so hopefully he will do well this semester too.  He also has a speech class, that one should be interesting. He does well with public speaking so we aren’t real worried about that one.  The third class he has is Humanities, now that one may be a bit challenging, but I think we are both ready for it.  I am seeing LOTS of note taking this semester and perhaps we will record the lectures too, we’ll see.

As usual we are still waiting and praying for the kidney to come.  God is in control and we are patiently waiting for HIS timing with this. We are ready any time that he is.  Each day we awaken with the question “will today be the day?”  Who knows.  It’s been a long 9 years but Charlie has taken it all in stride. He is more than ready to vacate his dialysis chair and live a more fulfilling life. It would be good to be able to plan a vacation without having to schedule dialysis treatments during it, but if that’ s what’s got to be done then we do it. Look at all of the new people we can meet at a new dialysis unit.  Each of them has a story, a personal walk and each of their stories brings them closer together.

We are trying to put together a cookbook to be used as a fundraiser. We are asking if anyone has any healthy recipes that they would like to contribute please email them to Sherrie at gsservant @gmail.com  she will compile them and we will let people know when the book is put together.

Thanks again for prayers and notes. We love each of you and wish you a prosperous and blessed new year~

Charlie & Sherrie

Finally We Can Breathe

29 Dec

Hi folks,

Been a while since I have written, sorry about that. We had so much happening here with Charlie’s finishing the semester and Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Sure seems like time has just flown by and I was just standing still.  Let’s see if I can back up a bit and fill  y’all in.

I think when I last wrote Charlie had gotten his award for Honors at school.  Let me pick it up from there. First we celebrated Thanksgiving.  That was amazing. Charlie and I had been on TV in an interview regarding the sidewalks in San Antonio and how they are so badly maintained. The gist of the story was that the sidewalks really are not disable friendly.  Well, there was a man who owns a BBQ place, he saw the story and contacted the news station and wanted to cater our Thanksgiving meal. What a blessing that was.  He got in touch with us right before Thanksgiving and we told him we would be going to our daughter’s home.  He asked how many people, we told him, and on Thanksgiving day he brought us a BBQ turkey, mashed potatoes and green beans. It was absolutely delicious.

The first week of December was finals for Charlie. We had 3 papers and and exam to complete and then we were done.  It was a very long semester and we both were definitely ready for a break!  Charlie ended the semester with an A and 2 B’s.  We are now on break until January 22nd.  Next semester will bring with it a whole new set of challenges, so we are resting up and gearing up for it.  Charlie will be taking English Comp 2, Speech, and Humanities.  We will definitely be getting the books early so we can start reading chapters and seeing what will be coming up!

On December 8th we had our first official fundraiser for Charlie’s kidney transplant. I made about 15 dozen meatballs, and I don’t even know how many gallons of sauce, garlic butter, salad and two cakes.  I had a ton of help with serving and decorating and manning different stations. It was wonderful.  It was also a success. We fed what felt like a zillion people! My feet and back let me know that we really did WORK that day. Now we are in the process of collecting recipes to try and create a cookbook with diabetic, heart and kidney friendly recipes. These will be put together to make a cookbook to sell as a fundraiser. If any of you have a recipe you would be willing to share I would more than welcome it. Please email the recipe to indutime@gmail.com

On December 11th we finally started receiving my Social Security.  PRAISE GOD, now we can pay bills and buy food and we have finally reached the light at the end of the tunnel….and it wasn’t a train!!!!   It’s good to be able to have a bill collector call and be able to tell them we can set up a payment plan.  I look forward to when all of them are finally paid off and we don’t get anymore calls.  We have been incredibly blessed over the last two and a half years and are thankful for all of the love and support that all have given us.  We will also finally be able to repay all of those who helped us out during our journey. I can honestly say that I am glad that we will no longer need the assistance of Food Stamps – now someone else in need will have the assistance available.  Another PRAISE was that I also became eligible for Medicare.  I had originally been told it would be 2 years from now, but because my case took two and a half years I qualified on November 1st.  I now have a Medicare Advantage plan which will begin on Jan 1st and I will be able to have a real doctor to follow my heart and kidney problems.  This will be so much better than going to the ER when I get so bad I can’t deal with things anymore.  The really great thing about it is that Charlie’s nephrologist and cardiologist have agreed to take me on as a patient. We are both thankful for that as we both like those doctors a lot. They have been great with Charlie’s care.

Next was Christmas.  Oh my, it was wonderful to be able to get the grandchildren gifts this year.  We spent the day with family and friends at our daughter’s home.   Three of our grandchildren were there with us. I so wish there was a way to get them all together for a holiday. Maybe some day!  I cooked a turkey, some dressing and made Charlie his giblet gravy.  There was so much other food there one didn’t know what to eat first.  There were also goodies galore: cake, cookies, candy, dips, chips, soda.  It was a feast.   Everyone ate and opened gifts, the children had a ball together.  It’s such fun to watch them play, they all get along so well together.  I love gatherings with family.

In between all of these things we had doctor’s appointments and the usual dialysis days.  It’s been a long year, but a good one and we are ending on a positive note.    Even though we are ending on a positive, we do have to honestly say that we are a bit disappointed.  At the beginning of the year everyone assured Charlie that this would be the year for the kidney, needless to say that hasn’t happened.  It’s hard because this year we have seen 3 other people get kidneys.  We are very happy for all of them, but each time someone gets one it saddens Charlie a bit more.  It’s been 9 years now since he went on the kidney transplant list and 9 years on dialysis.  Each dialysis day exhausts his body more.  We so want to travel and see our grandchildren and siblings but there is just so much that has to be done to do that.  We have to schedule dialysis everywhere we go, and that entails contacting the clinic on the other end and making sure his dialysis unit communicates with that one so that they have all the information they need to be able to do his treatment.  It also means having to have someone willing to take him to and bring him home from dialysis.  Then you have to have time for him to rest so that we can have a decent visit with everyone. It’s not an easy lifestyle.  We are going to try and make it to see everyone this year.  We have a grandchild that is about to turn 1 and we haven’t even met him yet.  There is another granddaughter due to be born in March, hopefully we will be able to see her too.

Well, that’s about it for now.  Please continue to pray for the kidney….maybe 2014 will finally be the year.

Blessings to all,

Charlie & Sherrie

 

Charlie’s Story

5 Oct

Good Afternoon y’all.  What a beautiful day here in San Antonio.  Sun is shining, blue sky, fluffy clouds, birds singing and butterflies are fluttering. God is truly awesome.

Well, let’s see what we did this week. Charlie started the week out well. Dialysis went well all week. School went pretty well.  On Wednesday Charlie did a presentation at school in his Theatre appreciation class (that’s the last entry on the blog). Yesterday he was on the local morning news show. Charlie loves the folks at the station, so much so that he turns them on before he even turns the lights on in the morning. If you would like to see it you can go to KABB.com and in the search box type in Event Helps Combat Kidney Disease. It will bring up a new page and on the left side you will see the same title. Click on it and you can watch the interview.

Charlie is an advocate for the American Kidney Fund.  They are having a Kidney Action Day event here in San Antoinio, at the AT&T center tomorrow (October 6th) from 9am to 3pm .  Charlie has been asked to share his story at Noon. If you have a chance to go to the event look for him. There will be entertainment, Healthy food demos and you can get tested for FREE to see if you have kidney disease or are at risk.  That alone makes it worth going!   Everyone should get tested. Especially if you have a history of diabetes or kidney disease anywhere in you family history.

When Charlie finished his interview we went to school. As we were walking the path to the student center we met a person putting out this weeks issue of the school newspaper.  Lo and behold, there’s Charlie on the front page.  Charlie also advocates for the disabled students at his school.  He has been doing that for a while now.  The article is about the problem of access to some of the places on the campus.  If you would like to read the article you can go to http://www.theranger.org/easier-wheelchair-access-to-mcallister-needed-1.2839236#.UlA4PwfRgcc.email

This has been an exciting week.  Charlie got a call from our daughter Emily and found out that our new little bundle of joy that is due to be here end of March – beginning of April is a BOY!  Little Ava will have a new brother.  How exciting.  That brings the tally to 4 boys and 5 girls.  Yep 9 grandchildren.  Each one of them brings us such joy. They all have such unique personalities.  It’s amazing.  God really has blessed us with the gift of being grandparents.  It’s a wonderful job.  There is nothing like being able to talk to your grandchildren about all of the amazing things God has done in our lives and help them to know how they can use all that God has for them.  We LOVE being Grandparents.

Charlie’s foot seems to be recovering well.  He has been walking on it a bit with the shoe and so far so good.  We just need to keep a good eye on it so that it doesn’t get bad again.  We would still like to see him start the new year without the wheelchair.  We’ll see.  All in God’s time, not ours.

Well, I suppose I have written enough for now.  I am going to take pictures at tomorrow’s event.  Maybe if we are lucky my camera will record part of the event.  I think I remember how to do it, but I haven’t recorded with it in quite a while so we shall see!  Either way I will post something after we get home.

Please pray for the following:  1. A Kidney.  2. The event tomorrow and Charlie’s presentation. 3. Healing of the foot.  4. Finances.  5. Fundraising.

Blessings to all.

Charlie & Sherrie

The Proposal

28 Sep

Charlie’s latest English assignment was to write a Narrative Essay on an “aha” moment in his life.  He chose to write about his decision to propose to me and how he did it.  It was fun writing it as we relived some moments and talked about it.  Anyone who would like to take a look at it can go to YouTube and type in Charlie’s Proposal to Sherrie.  It was taped because only one of our children and her family were able to be here for the momentous occasion.  It was put on YouTube because both of us have families living out of state and we wanted to share it with them.

Charlie is doing pretty well in school, with the exception of the Listening Quizzes in Music Appreciations.  He does well on the tests as they are multiple choice.  The Listening Quizzes are short quizzes where he has to listen to excerpts of music that the professor plays, then he has to answer a question about it.  Things such as the name of the composer or the name of the piece. For some reason those quizzes have been difficult for him.  He has gotten better at being able to identify instruments in the pieces.

It was an okay week this week.  Charlie was sick on Wednesday but is doing much better now.  He had some kind of a stomach bug and slept the majority of the day.  The rest of the week went well.  Friday was kind of weird because we got our early to go home and take a Music Appreciation test that had to be done online.  All quizzes and tests for that class are done online.  No big problems at dialysis this week which was great.

The American Kidney Fund from Washington, DC called Charlie again on Wednesday and asked him to speak on Sunday, October 6th, at the Kidney Action Day event here in San Antonio.  It will take place at the AT&T Center.  They want him to talk about Kidney disease and share his story. He said yes so that’s on the books for that day.  Not sure what time he is speaking but when we find out I will share that information with y’all.  It’s exciting and he is really looking forward to it.

His foot is doing okay.  Haven’t looked at it today yet.  Hopefully all is still well under the dressing.  We just need that to heal up and stay healed.  It’s so disappointing that it opened again. The air cast is so awkward for Charlie.  Earlier this week he was stepping up on the sidewalk and wound up down on one knee. I told him that he didn’t have to propose again.  🙂 He got up but he seems to have a balance issue when he’s wearing it.  Hopefully he won’t be in it very long.  He sees his wound care doctor on Monday so we can see what the plan is going to be.

We have church in the morning, choir has started back up for Charlie and he is looking forward to singing again. Sunday School is always a pleasure.  We are studying the book of Daniel and then we are going to start on Revelation.  It’s been interesting.  We had our movie night last week and it went pretty well.  Next month we will show “The Book of Esther”, I hope those of you who are here in the area will consider coming.  It’s FREE.  This ministry means a lot to Charlie and he is trying to figure out how we can have better attendance. Anyone have any ideas?

That’s pretty much it for now.  Hope each of you have had a great week and pray that this week is full of blessings for all of you.

Please pray for the following:  1. Charlie’s foot.  2. Charlie’s kidney.  3. School.  4. Finances. 5. Fundraising.

Blessings to all.

Charlie & Sherrie

The FOOT

23 Sep

Okay, we finally had the foot all healed and Charlie had begun to do some walking.  Well, last Tuesday he was experiencing some pain, so I took a look at the foot.  The top of the sock was wet, as if Charlie had stepped in water.  I took his sock off, and took off the bandage, and the callus had developed a bubble underneath it that had filled with fluid and burst.  I began cleaning the wound and stuff started coming out, there was also a blood blister that had developed above the callus that began draining.  Apparently the whole callus had lifted with whatever this was and now we had a new ulcer to deal with.  I cleaned it all up and put on a new dressing.  Next day we called the wound care doctor and they gave us an appointment for last Friday.  By Friday the wound had again filled and now it was a little pink around the outside and warm, yep, a slight infection.  Off we went to the doctor.  He put him on antibiotics and cut off the callus and debrided the wound.   So here we go again.  Fortunately, the wound is not that deep so it should close back up quickly.  Please pray that this is what happens.  Charlie is back in the air boot and he hates it.  He is kind of down because this seems like a step backwards right now.

We did hear from the lady who wants to donate the kidney.  She called last Friday and we gave her the numbers to the Texas Transplant Institute.  She was going to give them a call and let us know if there were any problems.  We didn’t hear from her so I am hoping the testing is now underway to see if there is a tissue match.  It would be wonderful if he got a kidney before the end of the year.  What a great way it would be to start 2014.  We shall see. It’s really difficult not to get your hopes up.  We are trying to be hopeful but not to get to excited yet.  We just keep praying that if this is the kidney the testing can be done quickly and we can move on.

We are attempting to find venues to do fundraising for the kidney now.  We are trying to connect with one of the groups at school to see if they would be willing to help out and do a small fundraiser on campus.  Please pray that if this is the way we are supposed to be going it will all work out. and if it’s not that God will point us in another direction.

Well, we have homework to do so I had better get going.  Praying that each of you has a blessed week.  Y’all are wonderful!

Charlie & Sherrie

 

Confusing Week…

16 Sep

Well, we made it through Monday. Charlie had a Theatre quiz this morning which I think he did pretty well on.  The Music Appreciation listening quiz, not so well.  It’s difficult to change a pattern.  When most people sit down to listen to music they listen to the words.  The thought of listening to the instruments and the style of the music don’t really cross the mind.  The Music Appreciation class is designed to teach students how to listen to music.  Charlie is starting to get it.  He was watching something last night and started naming the instruments in it.  Good sign, guess that means he must be learning something from the class!  Please keep it in prayer though because he has a long way to go with this one.  English class is still writing.  The next thing he has to write is regarding a moment when something became clear to him (an aha moment).  That should be an interesting essay.

The rest of this week is going to be kind of confusing.  Tomorrow will be dialysis and then again on Wednesday. He had to do it that way so that he can be with me for the Social Security Disability hearing on Thursday.  Our daughter is going to come and get us for that.  Charlie and Kim will not be able to join me.  It will be just me, the judge, the lawyer, a physician and a vocational expert.  Apparently the room is not big enough for Charlie and Kim to come along for moral support.  Please pray that this hearing goes well.  We have been waiting for this for a year now (filed in May 2011, rejected twice, hearing filed for in September 2012).  Glad it is finally here and that it will be over soon.  Both of us are praying that I get it because then things will be a little easier and we can finally start paying off the bills we are behind on.  The other thing we are looking forward to is for me to be able to go and see a doctor without having to use the Emergency Room.  I have not had a regular doctor since 2011, it’s been a real pain when I need to see someone or get a prescription refilled.  The social security will allow us a little breathing room and it will definitely make Charlie feel a little better about financial things.  We should know the decision withing no more than 2 months.

Saturday is Movie night.  Those of you who don’t know, Charlie started a movie ministry at Oak Ridge Baptist Church about a year and a half ago. He shows family friendly movies on the third Saturday of every month.  Doors open at 6pm and the movie starts at 7pm.  Admission, popcorn and lemonade are free. We have pizza available for $1.00 per slice. We also have door prize giveaways at the end of the movie.  It’s a great time of fellowship and entertainment.  If you would like more information you can email us at oakridgeafterdark12@gmail.com or call Charlie or myself at (210)859-8085.  The movie night  day is always a busy one.  Charlie does dialysis, then comes home and naps for a bit and then it’s off to the movies!   It is a lot of work but it’s well worth it in the end.

Our weeks are usually pretty booked, and usually they are pretty consistent as far as days and times go, but this week will be a little mixed up.  We are going to have to miss another day of school (Wednesday) so that we can make the change for the hearing.

Oh and then we have the foot.  Charlie has been walking a bit and on Friday night he had said his foot was hurting.  He felt what he thought was blood on his sock and asked me to look at it.  No blood but it was really wet.  I took the sock and the dressing off and low and behold, the foot had a huge spot that had blistered.  The blister was around and under the old callus.  I cleaned the area and then debrided it..  I think we are going to have to make a trip to wound care as the stuff the was coming out was from under the callus.  I am hoping that does not mean that there is a new wound developing at that site.  I redressed the wound and then checked it yesterday, so far it looks okay, but I think we are going to schedule the appointment to make sure.

Never a dull moment here that’s for sure.  We are both looking forward to the Kidney Action Day walk on October 6th. That’s a Sunday.  It will be at the AT&T Center.  Lots going on there.   (This information is from the American Kidney Fund flyer) Kidney Action Day is all about YOU and YOUR health. Join us at the AT&T Center for free kidney health screenings*, healthy cooking demos and healthy food samples, interactive fitness demos, local entertainment, children’s activities, and our Kidney Action Day Walk. Charlie was contacted by the American Kidney Fund regarding using his story, we will let y’all know what happens with that when we know more.

Okay, it’s almost midnight and I still have to do the dishes (I fell asleep after dinner), but I wanted to get this off to y’all so you could be in prayer for this week.  I know I have said it before, and I will say it again,  y’all are wonderful.  Your prayers and words of encouragement are what keep us going on this walk and wait for that kidney.  We believe that God already has it waiting for Charlie, and that in His time he will reveal who has it and where.  We are waiting for that to happen but we know that we need to be preparing for it.  We are trying to brainstorm ideas for fundraising and need some help.  I used to be able to do all of that kind of thing on my own, it just doesn’t seem to be a possibility right now.  I spend my time trying to make sure Charlie’s health is okay (and mine too) and make sure that homework gets taken care of.  Those two things in themselves have become full time work.  Anyone that has any ideas or who would like to put together a fund raiser please contact me so that I can put you in touch with the non-profit that is working with us.  If anyone would like to donate to the account for Charlie’s kidney transplant you can do so by going to helphopelive.org.  When you get to the page there is a box in the upper right corner.  Type in Charlie Shivley and it will take you to Charlie’s page.  There is a button that says donate now, if you click there you can make a secure donation.  All donations are tax deductible.

Now I really am going to sign off.  Y’all have a great night and a bless week.

Charlie & Sherrie

Sensory Detail

12 Sep

This week in Charlie’s English Composition class he turned in one Essay Quiz which was on Micheal Montaigne, the person who created the Essay.  Now we know where essays came from and what they are supposed to be used for.  The assignment yesterday was to write using sensory detail.  He has to write two paragraphs, one describing a food he HATES and the other describing a food he LOVES.  I thought it would be fun to share one of the paragraphs today.  The idea is to describe the food using the five senses: Sight, Sound, Smell, Touch and Taste.  Here is the paragraph on the food he hates.  Let me know what you think of the description.  🙂

I hate okra.  The solid pods boil in the pot and look all  green and slimy, reminding me of nasty green boogers. It’s nearly impossible to pick it up as the gooey mess slithers out of your fingers and you hear it plop on the plate like a frog flopping on a lily pad.  The smell reminds me of vomit. It tastes like snot running down the back of your throat.  I really hate okra!

Okay, there is the sensory detail paragraph on the food Charlie hates.  We had a good time writing that paragraph.  Does it create a picture of the food he hates most?  I think we used all 5 senses.  Now we are working on the food he loves – rib eye.  We are stuck at what it smells like.  I’ll post that one when we finish it.

The whole exercise is to get everyone ready to write a narrative essay on “a moment when you truly learned something”.  That one should be interesting too.  There are so many moments that he can choose from.  It has to be 3 to 5 pages long.  It should be an interesting assignment.  The English Professor is the same one that Charlie had last Spring when he had to withdraw from the class because he had been ill and missed too much school.  He loves her and has a great deal of respect for her as she is pushing forward against a second bout of cancer, but she is still teaching and moving on.  She is determined not to let it get her.

This week Charlie also had his first graded assignment in Music Appreciation.  He did well.  He is having a problem with the concepts and definition and listening (okay, no comments from the peanut gallery).  Listening to music for music is not an easy thing if you have never done it before.  He is having to listen to the musical pieces and try to pick out instruments, styles, and textures. I didn’t realize how much I already knew until we started doing homework and I could answer the questions as they printed.  I guess that’s because I started singing in choir when I was in second grade.  I don’t know how to read musical notes as far as their tone but I do know what they are and what the beats are and I do understand the styles and stuff so I feel comfortable trying to help Charlie through this challenge.  He has been able to recognize a few instruments while listening, it’s just going to take some practice.  His Professor for this class is wonderful.  He’s a priest and it was great to talk to him on yesterday and have him use an analogy using God to make a point to Charlie about music.

His first quiz in his introduction to theatre class is next Monday.  This class is his favorite, it is also one from the Spring Semester.  His Professor is amazing.  He takes time with the student and really cares about how they are doing and takes the time to listen to them.  It is impossible to get bored in this class.  The professor is always up and always funny, perhaps it is the actor in him but  the compassion for his students is very real. The class will be doing a project, which I believe that it begins next week.  They have to come up with an idea for a Broadway show and present it to the class.  It will be a group project so we shall see how it goes.  Charlie is the oldest one in the class, we could be parents to everyone in this class.

Charlie has also been in touch with the school newspaper and has a meeting with the Disability counselor next Monday.  I believe I wrote about the giant hill that they want us to climb to get him into the handicapped entrance to the building the Music Appreciation class is in when I last posted.  This has definitely been a challenge.  The first week of school there were tables set up with representatives from different programs and departments at the school.  One of them was the school newspaper.  We talked for about an hour and a half with one of the new editors about all of the access problems we had encountered on just the first day of school.  The issue about the access to that building, the problem with the handicapped doors not working, non-working elevators, cracks and missing bricks from the sidewalks….all of these are real issues to people who are visually impaired and/or in wheel chairs.  The newspaper came to the building and took pictures of me pulling the wheel chair up the 12 stairs to get to the cat walk and then the 5 stairs to get to the classroom.  They wanted people to see what Charlie goes through to get to class.  It really is not right.  There is talk (there has been for several years) of building some kind of ramp but it hasn’t happened yet.  We did see them repairing one of the door openers yesterday and we were told that it would be working when we get there on Friday.  He is meeting with the counselor to discuss creating some kind of a Disability Advocacy group for the campus.  He wants to hold a rally at the flag pole for anyone who would be interested in getting a group together.

Let’s see, what else has been happening here?  Oh, there is another important thing.  Charlie is an advocate for the American Kidney Fund.  Last month he got an email because they were looking for people willing to share their story for the Annual Kidney Walk, which will be held at the AT&T Center here in San Antonio, on October 6th.  We wrote back to them saying he was willing to help out. I also included a little of his bio and then the address to the blog.  Well, on Monday morning we got a call from the American Kidney Fund in Washington, DC.  They would like to have Charlie share his story.  She said they will send the information to the media and they will be in touch with Charlie.  Could this be a start of his public speaking??  Could this be the time when someone will hear and have that long awaited kidney?  Who knows.  We shall see.

The other thing that is coming up is my Social Security hearing.  Charlie and I will be going on September 19th.  Hopefully this will be it and I will be awarded my Social Security Disability.  The lawyer is very positive and said that we have a nice judge.  We had a meeting with the lawyer last week.  He said that my age, my inability to do a whole lot anymore, and my work history are all pretty positive indicators that I should get it.  We are praying and covet your prayers that this does happen as it will make things much easier, financially.  We have a very hard time right now but God has seen us through these last two years and I know that as long as we remain faithful He will be there for us.

Well folks, I guess that’s about it for now.  As usual, thanks so much for your support and your wonderful words of encouragement.  You all mean a great deal to us.  Please continue to pray for:  Charlie and school (two quizzes on Monday). Charlie’s tooth (still have not been able to get the one that broke fixed.). A Kidney. The success of the Kidney Walk (there are so many people who benefit from it). Finances. Fundraising. Social Security hearing.

Blessings to each and every one of you,

Charlie & Sherrie

Second Week of School – Challenges

5 Sep

Well, last week was interesting.  First it was Charlie’s tooth. It had cracked and the filling fell out.  We went to the dentist and they want $3000 to do work.  He needs to have a deep cleaning of his gums  done and needs a root canal.  They can’t do the root canal until after they do the gums and to do just the gums is $977.  They tried to run a credit check under both of our names but could not get anything to come up, therefore they want $300 for a deposit and then they will be able to work on payments with us.  That all happened on Tuesday so we missed Music Appreciation class on Wednesday.   We left the house at 6:30am that morning and got home at around 7:45pm. It was a very long day.

On Friday we woke up early (me at 4 and Charlie at 4:20).  I noticed a problem hearing but went about making a sour cream coffee cake for Charlie’s Theatre class.  As the morning went on I noticed the hearing was getting worse.  At 5:40 we decided to take me to the Emergency clinic down the street.  They looked in the ears and did a CT Scan. The brain looked good and they didn’t have the equipment to do anything else.  I was told I needed to go to an ENT doctor.  I have an audiologist and called the clinic.  I was referred to the ER at University Hospital and told to ask them for the on call ENT doctor. We did that and they got the doctor.  He checked both ears (the left one is already deaf- I lost hearing in it about 4 years ago – went to bed one night and was fine, then got up and was deaf on the left side.) and then decided to do an MRI.  We did the MRI and then we went to the Audiologist’s office which was across the street.  They did the hearing test and confirmed that there was substantial sudden hearing loss in the right ear.  They set up and appointment with the ENT doctor for Tuesday (Monday was a holiday) where the plan was to inject the ear with steroids.  The injection would either make the ear better, do nothing and it would stay the same, or it could make it worse.  Not exactly what either Charlie or myself wanted to hear.  On an up note, Charlie walked most of that day and did well.  His foot looked great after that.

We got up on Tuesday and I went to Dialysis with Charlie.  We left the house at 5:50am.  We were picked up from dialysis at 11:15am and they took us to to the clinic. Now any other time they would have other pick ups and drop offs but we went directly to the clinic.  The paper that was given to us at the ER said the appointment was for 1:30, we got there at about 11:45.  When I registered at the clinic they told me that the ER scheduled the appointment without calling to see if there was an opening and that the actual appointment was scheduled for 2:30 but they would see us as soon as they could. We went to the cafe and got a sandwich then back to the clinic.  At 1:00 they took me back, Charlie decided to stay in the waiting room (after about 20 minutes he changed his mind and he was escorted to the room I was in).  We were in that room from 1- 2:30.  At 2:30 they took us to the Ear room.  Kind of a scary looking place with all the surgical stuff in it. We waited until 3 and then I went out to the front office and asked if anyone knew how much longer it was going to be.  The nurse was surprised I hadn’t had the injection done yet. Charlie and I were really tired of waiting – Charlie especially as he had had dialysis and had not been able to rest yet. The nurse came in and said the doctor would be in in about 20 minutes and that the procedure would last about an hour, including the recovery time.  That didn’t make either of us happy.  We then asked for the clinic director.  She came in and then low and behold, so did the doctor.  She told us what was going to happen then she disappeared for another 10 minutes.  We lodged the complaint with the director who is following up with the ER and the clinic to see where the problem started.  I did have the procedure and we finally got out of the clinic at 5:30 with a prescription that was to have prevented blood from crusting at the injection site. I called the pharmacy to find out how much the prescription was and was told $164.00. Needless to say that wasn’t going to happen.  The pharmacy said they would contact the doctor int he morning to see if there is anything else I could use.  We left the clinic and then we called for the ride and were on hold for about 15 minutes.  The ride showed up and we were on the way home when the cab company called (the Via Trans people called them) and said they were waiting for us at the clinic.  Was a VERY LONG day!!!!   Both of us were exhausted by the time we made it home (7:15pm).

We went to school yesterday.  I got up at 4 again and made the cake and we took it to the Theatre class where it was eaten up.  It did come out good if I say so myself!  Made it through all of our classes and were heading out to the pick up area when we realized that we didn’t cancel the Transportation people when the Wound Care clinic cancelled Charlie’s foot appointment.  They never come on time when they come so Charlie called them as I was walking him to the pick up spot.  We had arranged with a person from Church to pick us up so we could go get my hearing aid from the Via Trans lost and found.  He was going to call us at 2 so we could give him directions.  The van was already there to pick us up and they said they would take us over to get the hearing aid and then take us to church.  Charlie had the phone and was on hold with the transportation company and the friend from church called.  Charlie felt so bad about him coming our  way because the van was there.  He explained what was happening and thought it would be easier to take the van because we had the wheelchair and he thought the friend didn’t know how to get to us.  He is concerned that the friend is now upset with him.  It wasn’t his intent to do that.  Sometimes life is kind of hard and it’s hard to know what to do in situations like this.  God blessed us with this friend and his wonderful wife.  They have both been a great blessing to us.  We sincerely hope and pray that the friendship has not been damaged by this.

So now we are waiting until next week for another appointment at the Audiologist and then with the ENT doctor. I have already decided Charlie will not be going with me.  He will go to dialysis and I will go to the doctor.  Just got to find a ride there now.  I think the plan is for them to make the appointment for Thursday so that I only have to go to one building.  We will update when we have more hearing information.

Today was dialysis again Charlie had a good session and then went in for a nap.  I, for one, am very glad that this week is almost over, it’s been a very long one.  School tomorrow and then on Sunday Charlie and I are responsible for the donut social at church.  We are not having donuts as it is less expensive for me to bake a couple of sour cream coffee cakes and some Kolaches.  It will be different but it will be good.  🙂 Charlie will start choir again this Sunday and has a Deacon’s meeting so Sunday morning will be busy.

All I can say is thank God for being there with us through all of life’s challenges.  He is the only way we both keep going. He gives us challenges so that we can overcome them and use them as a testimony for Him and all He can do for us.  Thank you God.

Praying a good weekend for all of you.  Thanks for the prayers and words of encouragement, please keep them coming.

Pray for the following:  1. Charlie at school. 2. Charlie’s walking.  3. A Kidney.  4. Finances.  5. Fundraising.

Blessings to all.

Charlie and Sherrie

Really???

27 Aug

So, we made it through the first day of school.  It hasn’t rained all summer but yesterday we had to have an umbrella to start the day off with!  I have really gotten good at driving the wheel chair one handed.  I was able to maneuver it with one hand as I held the umbrella trying to keep myself and Charlie dry.  Worked okay until we got onto the sidewalk.  You would think with all the money they are collecting from the new parking fee at the school that they would have enough money to replace the cement and the bricks at the handicapped drop off but apparently not because we made a complaint about it back in May and it still hasn’t been fixed.  It’s probably going to take one of the blind students to trip, fall and get hurt before something will be done.  So sad.

We got to school and went to the student center.  Charlie loves the Mexican hot chocolate so we got some of that and a breakfast taco and waited for the bookstore to open so he could get his books.  It was due to open at 7:45 so we got on the elevator at 7:40 and went down stairs.  Well, 7:45 came and went….and so did 8:00 and 8:10.  Apparently the manager was stuck in traffic (People here haven’t seen rain in so long that they just forgot how to drive in it) and there was no one else with a key.   They finally opened and I went to the office to pick up the books.  We had placed the order online so it would be ready for us to pick up when we got there, of course no one could find his books and they weren’t in the alphabetical notebook of all of the orders pending pick-up.  Someone finally arrived and was able to find them in a pile on the counter.

Once we were done there we went over to Disability Services to see them and pick up the paperwork that had to be signed by each instructor so that they knew I was officially Charlie’s note taker.  We had a good visit and then we looked at Charlie’s schedule again before leaving.  It was then that we realized that the Music Appreciation class was not in the same building as the Theatre class.  I wasn’t sure how to get to the other building.  I knew that there was a catwalk between them but wasn’t sure how to get the wheelchair over it.  I asked about an elevator and was then told there was only one way to get to the handicapped ramp for that building.  I would have to walk down a street and up a steep hill (pushing the wheelchair).  I thought about it and talked to Charlie about it and we decided that we didn’t want me in the hospital on the first day of school.  So, Charlie walked up 12 stairs and God provided two absolutely wonderful people who took the time to carry the wheelchair up.  We got to the top and put Charlie back in the wheelchair to walk across the catwalk, got in the door and there were 5 MORE stairs.  Charlie walked those also and those wonderful people carried the chair up them too.  Luckily the class was right there.  So we got into the class and all was well.  Then we had to get back over the catwalk.  This time Charlie walked down the 5 stairs and I rolled the wheelchair down them, put him in it and walked across the catwalk and then…….Charlie did the 12 stairs and I SLOWLY wheeled the chair down them.  Narrow stairs, not easy to do a wheelchair on, but MUCH BETTER than the down the street and up the hill thing.

So we also encountered an elevator closed for PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE (seriously…on the first day of school?????), and every Handicapped automatic door that we had to use did not work.  Between that and the poor condition of the sidewalks I definitely got my cardio workout for the day.  My feet were really tender this morning but it was okay.  I am very pleased to announce that Charlie wasn’t hurting at all after his exercise!!!  Maybe that will be his PT.  🙂

The classes seem like they are going to be fun.  The only one he is really concerned about is his English class.  LOTS of reading and writing in this class.  Drama will be fun, he has a great professor.  Music Appreciation seems like it will be interesting. His Professor is a priest.  He told the class they could call him Father or Brother or Professor.

All in all things went pretty well.  Today he had dialysis, no bleeding, thank goodness.  They decreased his heprin and that seems to have stopped the bleeding problem  He bled for  full hour last week and they decided perhaps his blood was too thin.  Hopefully this will be a permanent fix.  Other than that no real excitement today.  He is napping right now and we will do homework after dinner.

Praying that all have a blessed week.

Please pray for:  School.  Charlie’s tooth (it cracked and the filling is falling out.  He is going to the dentist tomorrow). Kidney.  Finances.  Fundraising. Movie Ministry.

Blessings to all.

Charlie & Sherrie

Here We Go!!

24 Aug

So in the last week or so we have had a lot happen.  Charlie’s foot has FINALLY healed!  He got his new shoes and we have an appointment with the podiatrist to start talking about physical therapy to learn how to walk again.  Charlie starts school again on Monday.  Please pray for a successful semester.  He is a little worried right now but all will go well.

I only have about 7 minutes before I have to get off of the computer here so this is just a short note.  I will be back on early next week to make sure and update everyone on what’s happening here.

Blessings to all.

Sherrie

 

 

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