Tuesday, June 12, 2018

My Bee Feeding Dandelion Catastrophe ..Or the lawn of a million wishes....

Have you seen those Facebook post...Don't kill your dandelions, they are the Bee's first food in the spring?  Save the Bee's, keep the Dandelions.  I have seen them and I didn't kill the Dandelions in my lawn.  My lawn is now 1% grass and 99% Dandelion.

This spring my lawn had so many Dandelions in bloom it was so yellow that when you looked out at my lawn it was like looking out at the sun.  It was a giant Dandelion infestation.  I thought well I'm feeding the Bee's.  The thing is there were about two Bee's to my hundreds of Dandelions.
When the Dandelions are blooming it's actually not so bad.  Having the only yellow lawn in the neighborhood is interesting.  I look out my kitchen window some days and watch the children walk by and pick them, a present for their mom maybe.  One child even stopped one day and asked how I got so many of them.  I'm sure their lawn at home was dandelion free.  I told them they just spread really fast.
The real problem is when you get the big white dandelion seed puffs.  This stage of dandelion life does not feed the bee's.  It does feed some birds.  But again only two birds came to eat the seeds.  It was a feast for them, I kept hoping they would tell their bird friends about this seed feast but they didn't.  The children who walk by the house have fun at this stage too.  They stop and blow the seeds off the dandelion heads.  They run through the lawn kicking the heads off.  I have the most entertaining lawn.  They asked me, how many plants do you think you have.  I think I have a million.
There are a million wishes on this lawn.  What would you wish for?
My Husband is done with this Bee feeding disaster that my green thumb has created.  He wants to spread chemicals on the lawn and be done with this mess.  I keep saying, you can't do that.  I have ladybugs living in the lawn, and spiders and preying mantis.  I have this living environment..  If we spray chemicals on the lawn it will kill them, it will poison the birds.  So I went and bought this Friska's Dandelion removal tool.  The ad says it's so easy to use, it claims when you are done with your lawn you will want to do all the neighbors lawns too.  Of course the man in the ad has 3 dandelion plants in his yard.  Not  the hundreds we have.
This is one hour of Dandelion removal from my lawn.  Two gallons of Dandelion plants removed.  You can't really tell that I have done anything.  But I have all summer to work at removing them.  Dandelion plants are kinda smart.  When you go to mow these puff balls down, they somehow know and shrink down below the mower.  The lawn looks good for a day and  then they all pop up again.  That's what annoys my husband.  The nice thing is the Dandelions pretty much won't bloom again until fall.  So hopefully I can remove the majority of them before fall.  I will let you know how that goes.
Do you remember being a child and blowing on Dandelions and making wishes?  Oh if only my lawn was a lawn of a million wishes.  I'd wish my dear friends battling cancer would win their battles.  I'd make all one million wishes that.
This summer attacking those Dandelions with my Dandelion removal tool will be good quiet therapy.  A good few hours a day or week of being outside, quietly contemplating life.  I'm thankful for the Gospel and to know that Families are forever.  That those who pass on are not gone, they are not even that far away.  That knowledge and that belief is helping me to stay strong during these months of what I'm afraid will end with great sadness.  If only I could get those one million wishes.
What would you wish for if you had one million wishes growing on your lawn?
Friskas Dandelion weeder ad from Amazon.com

Thursday, May 17, 2018

An invitation to a Uterine Ablation.....My Peri menopause Catastrophe part 3...

I chose the title to this blog, because of this book my daughter is reading.  An invitation to a beheading.  Because in the book, so my daughter says the main character is told that they will be beheaded due to a law they broke.  But they are not told when this will occur.  And I think that causes the character psychological stress.  I think over the past four years I have dealt with a lot of psychological stress due to Peri menopause.  I know due to the wonderful world of the Internet that I'm not alone in this roller coaster ride of heading towards menopause.  I don't know that I'd advise reading all the stories I have read.  But I can say there comes a point when you are done.  I hit that point last August.
I am one of those unfortunate women who has periods that last for months.  I do family history and if I could I'd find a way to connect myself to the woman in the Bible who reaches out to touch the Savior.  I'm not sure how long she had an issue of blood, but I know for a fact it's not a fun situation.

     It also causes a lot of other health issues.  Such as anemia.  So I finally went to  my doctor in August and started the process of finding a way to stop this non-stop bleeding.  I really wanted a female doctor, but there are not enough female gynecologist out there.  The waiting list to see one is months.  I couldn't keep going for months.  I did find a good doctor though and we decided to do a uterine ablation.
      This procedure causes the uterine lining to stop growing each month, which stops you from having periods. This was decided in October.  Before you can have this surgery you have to have all kinds of test.  I had to have a uterine biopsy to make sure my bleeding wasn't caused by cancer.  I had to have ultra sounds done to make sure there were no growths in my uterus.  Once all of these test were done it was December and the busy time for my work.  We decided to schedule my surgery in February.   What is few more months of non-stop bleeding anyways right.
     I went in on February 7th to have my surgery.  It can be done right in the doctors office, they put me under and I was on my way to no more long, heavy periods.  When I woke up I expected to feel sore, but I felt fine.  When I commented on this the doctor said, we couldn't do the procedure.  I was a bit out of it from being under anesthesia .  I couldn't understand why this was not done.  My poor husband.  I think I cried all the way home.
     A week later I met with my doctor he told me that my Uterine lining was so "Fluffy" that they could not see my Fallopian tubes to do the sterilization that needs to be done if you have an ablation.  He gave me progesterone pills to take for 10 days.  He told me that this would stop the bleeding that I was having, and then I would have a period that would clear out my uterus.

     I took the pills and the nice thing was they stopped the bleeding I was having, well for a little bit.  But they made me feel so lethargic.   I went out and bought lots of pad and tampons.  My favorite are the Always infinity brand.  I could be a spokes person for these.  What I love is that they are super thin, and yet they have for the most part kept me accident free even during my worst periods.  Which I refer to as "murder scenes."
My other period must have are the Tampax Ultra tampons.  If you can go through almost a box of both of these in a day, you know you need to see your doctor and find a way to stop your periods. 

     There was a point where I had felt like I had been bleeding for forever and looked online to see if I had made a world record, and that was when I realized that  I hadn't made a world record, and that was something I could be thankful for.  There are some real horror stories on the Internet about non-stop periods.  Anyways I bought all of these boxes of pads and tampons because I expected to have a really heavy period once I stopped taking the pills.
   What happened was a nightmare.  I started bleeding three days before ending the pills, and then a few days after ending the pills I was sitting on my couch and my head started ringing, and I felt off.  When I stood up I think half my uterine lining fell out of me.  The infinity pad was not able to withstand the issue at hand.  It scared me so bad, that I had a neighbor take me to the emergency room and my husband met me there.  I have to say this is when I would hope to have a female doctor.  Someone who can at least understand what it is like to be a woman.  But I got a male doctor and he said "a woman's uterus is like a dump truck, when you are sitting it's tilted and so it keeps everything in, and when you stand up it dumps it all out."  and then he proceeded to say " women can bleed a lot. Men if they had as much blood as women have come out of them would die, but women they can bleed a lot."  Ugh!
     In all situations I try hard to find something to be thankful for.  I was thankful that this issue happened while I was at home, and that I had good neighbors who came over and helped me out.  I was thankful that someone could cover my shift at work the next day, because I was pretty exhausted. And I was thankful my husband was able to leave work and be with me at the hospital.  I think what I was really scared about was, could that happen again?
   The next day I called my doctors office and finally was able to schedule my Uterine Ablation part two.  At my pre-operation appointment my doctor and I talked about this horrible bleeding incident and he said that most likely all the periods I thought I was having, probably weren't even real periods because my uterine lining was so thick, it was just a small part that was shedding because it couldn't get any bigger.  I told him that I call my uterus a hoarder.  It just seems it wants to hoard tissue.
   Finally on March 22nd I had my uterine ablation in the hospital.  They had to cut into my stomach to do a tubal ligation first and then did the ablation after.  I got to the hospital at 11 am and did not have surgery until almost 4 pm.  I guess some of the surgeries before me took longer than expected.
The first four hours after surgery I was in a lot of pain, and then after that either the drugs they gave me kicked in, or things just stopped hurting I'm not sure.  I spent 3 days pretty much sleeping  and doing very little.  After 4 days I went back to work, but was still very exhausted.
     It has now been a month since my surgery.  My doctor has given me they OK to do whatever I want, except house work. I'm not supposed to do house work for a year  Lol..   I will not know for 4 months whether or not I will have a period.  But the period I should have would only be very light spotting for one to two days.  I'm hoping for no period at all.  Because I'm done with it all.  Over the last six months I have had more days bleeding and using feminine  hygiene products than I have had days without.  So no periods would be so wonderful.  I look forward to being able to exercises and not feel exhausted.  I look forward to living without worrying that at any moment I could have a bloody accident occur.  So if you are living with something similar talk to your doctor about the Esure Ablation.   I'll let you know in 4 months what life is like.  I'm hoping it will be wonderful and period free!

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Mom of a Missionary... E-mails from Mexico March 26,2018

Don't stop! Believing!

Hello, family and friends! Señor Elder Bowlby here. 

(A photo of the elusive and camera-shy Elder Bowlby)

Just a quick letter this week. There hasn't been too much that has happened. In the beginning of the week, my companion got a really bad intestinal infection and we had to stay home a few days of work. We've been inviting our really good investigators to baptism and the church, but... they just don't seem to want to come. It kinda hurts, knowing that these people are more than prepared to be baptized in the church and they just... don't want to come to church, There's not much I can really do in this situation.

The sun is starting to beat down with stronger and stronger heat, and I'm applying lots of sunscreen to my easily burnt nose. It's gotten to 89 degrees Farenheit out here in the past week (and it's also humid here), and many members are saying that during the summer months the heat reaches 104 normally. And to think it's only march! I wonder how people came to live here during these summer months.

I'm getting used to the sun bit by bit. I'm not going to be too happy once the cold gets back in the later months... oops!

I love you all loads, and I hope you're all ready for general conference this saturday and sunday. Know that as you're watching it, I'll be watching it too! Be sure to take notes and seek revelation from the Lord.

Miss you!

-Elder Bowlby

It's always wonderful to get a photo in that Monday e-mail.  I don't think my Son realizes how much that photo means.
I have printed out and put his photo's all around our living area so that I can see him.  I sometimes have to beg for weeks for a photo.  one email I sent every other sentence was please send some photos of you not the buildings.  

Mom of a Missionary....E-mails from Mexico March 19,2018

Staying in the Purification zone!!!

Hello, Friends and family! It is I, Elder Bowlby, once again.

I'm going to be brief as I don't have too much to share (nor do I have any photos to pass on), but things are going very well for us. My companion (Elder Jensen) and I are staying together in our humble area of Purification. We are inviting people to baptism! And as our invitations fly, it seems that not very many people are willing or ready to come to church. Many times, I get frustrated, but I have to remember that people have agency, and we can't take that sort of thing away (no matter how much it would bless them).

The sun is starting to beat down on us. I might have to buy a sombrero to keep the sun from burning my poor, white-man's face (or just use a lot more sun-screen). 

I've been recieving a lot of messages from you all, and I'm glad to hear of your successes at home, work, and in the work of the Lord! Remember to pray in your families always, that your wives (or husbands) and your children may be blessed (please see 3 Nephi 18:21).

If any of you out there are having cold weather, please enjoy it for me. The fan that is currently blowing air towards me is only blowing more hot air... yikes!

-Elder Bowlby

It is hard on Monday's when you only get a short e-mail....This is all I have to hold on to from my son until next week.  But the weeks just fly by.  It seems to be always almost Monday.  

Mom of a Missionary...E-mails from Mexico..March 12, 2018

Carry on, carry on, carry on!

Hello, friends and family. Greetings to all of you. I hope you are well.
(I call this one, Mexico Morning)

It's been yet another week here in purification. Transfers are happening soon, and the dawning reality is that summer is coming, and with the summer, comes the heat. These next few months are going to be brutal, now that I'm so close to the equator.

The week was pretty normal and regular. We walked, talked, preached, and practiced. We have a very cool investigator named Juan José, who is coming to realize the truth of what we teach. Although we invited him to stake conference this week, he did not show. We are still hoping to invite him to baptism this week and help him come closer to Christ. There are also many others who we are caring for in this zone, and a few prospect families who are ready to accept the Gospel.

We've been working hard to support the ward as well. The Victoria stake has an initiative programmed where we as missionaries try to have at least one member accompany us every day of the week (and we've been doing it well and consistently). 

This week I learned a lot about loving the people. We know that as missionaries, we go out and talk to people, but if we just talk to talk, we accomplish nothing. We know that we must talk to save, invite to save, and love to save. In the Lord's work, there is no alternative. We are to love others.

I'd like to share a scripture from my personal studies that I really like:

Alma 34: 39
Yea, and I also exhort you, my brethren, that ye be watchful unto prayer continually, that ye may not be led away by the temptations of the devil, that he may not overpower you, that ye may not become his subjects at the last day; for behold, he rewardeth you no good thing.

We've been teaching a lot about prayer this week. To those who are members and those who are not, and we know that prayer, when used with faith, always blesses and helps.

Please be sure to take the time to pray as a family, so that your family is blessed and protected.

Love you all. Stay safe.

-Elder Bowlby

Mom of a Missionary.....E-mails from Mexico March 5, 2018

A normal week of normal normalities.
Hello, friends and family!

How are you all doing? It's Elder bowlby here.

This week has been very interesting. We've had a lot of things to do, and yet not a lot of time to do it. We've been here and there and everywhere. It's ben a week of work and introspection. We've been following the spirit a lot more as well. We've been directed many times to the houses of a select few who are curious and prepared for the gospel. We've also been in search of less active members who have strayed away... and we've been growing personally. 

I feel that we're really loved here in Mexico. The members are very supportive and willing to acompany us to our lessions, and sometimes when we pop in just to check on someone they let us in and invite us to eat a little. 
There's not too much to write, but I will write this: Through all of this service I am uncovering a truth about the mission, and it is that the mission is to help us to become someone better, who lives the Gospel at the maximum level possible, who is an adult and a prepared child of God. We've been learning to repent every day so that we can rely more on the spirit, and trying to keep in mind a vision of who God wants us to be at the end of it all. This is a Mission truth, you know. To come to a full knowledge of who you are, your divine potential, and how Jesus Christ lets you get there. Truly, we must have faith in our Lord to understand the why of it all.

Love you all, Miss you loads. Please keep reading your scriptures!

-Elder Bowlby

Monday, April 9, 2018

Mom of a Missionary February 26, 2018...His first birthday away from home!

My companions aren't helping me with my OCD...

yes, it is very clear to me, that I, Elder Bowlby have OCD.

Obsessive Collection Disorder! Can you believe it? Me, A collector! And my fellow missionaries aren't helping me. Just look at these birthday gifts!

Yu-gi-oh decks!

👌👌👌👌👌👌 I have some bad OCD alright.

How goes it, family and friends? Elder Bowlby here. It's been a long week of work here in Purificación, where we walk, and teach, and preach. We're encountering some very nice people to teach and we have the hopes of inviting them to church. My companion and I are making a very large effort to find and to teach.

We're working on saying more prayers to find people, and we're always looking for direction from the Holy Ghost when it comes to who we need to visit and where we should look. We're getting much better with that. We visited a less-active member yesterday and he said that our visit was the answer to his fast. We've also been able to get really lucky when it comes to finding our investigators a second time. Missionaries seem to have bad luck when it comes to planned citas, but when we hop in on surprise, they let us in! We've been really happy.

My birthday yesterday was great. All of the members wished me happy birthday, they bought donuts and cake and we ate really well. One of the members let me play their violin and so I felt even better to have the instrument in my hand. 

All in all, things are going well. Thank you for all of the birthday wishes and thank you for keeping me in your prayers. I want to make the Lord proud, and I also want you at home and in the field to be happy. Always remember that faith in Jesus Christ is faith in his love! He loves you infinitely. It's a lot more than you might be able to imagine, but when we have faith in Him, we have faith in His love for us.

Stay strong! I miss you all.

Here's to being 20 years old!)

-Elder Bowlby

I have to say it was hard to  not be able to call my son on his birthday and talk to him.  I did send him multiple e-mails with birthday wishes.  one job I have at work is to make balloon bouquets, so I made 20 balloons up and took photos and sent them to him.  I'm so proud of my son going off and having this mission adventure.