When Life Does Not Go As Expected

When Life Does Not Go As Expected October 14, 2023


The storms of life will come.

You make all the plans and prepare for all the events then life does not go as you expected. If you would allow me, I would like to step away from breaking down Titus for just today, Over the past almost 2 years I have learned on a very personal level, that we have no real control of our lives. This past week, it was like life; well God was trying to show me again that I am not in control and that life does not go as expected.

Flash Back

If I were to write a book about our lives over the past almost 2 years, I’m sure people would think it was all a lie.  I promise you it is not. Life has not gone as we expected.

We probably could go back even further, like just before the pandemic started, when I was hospitalized for 4 days seriously ill with something they couldn’t figure out. Or 5 years ago when our oldest son was injured in the Army, and we had an ordeal getting him home & recovered. Or even further back when I took a nasty fall that took a few reconstructions & years to recover. Maybe even further back to when I was having heart issues that led me to my 1st heart procedure. We could go even further back to bedrest with babies, passing out in school, my dad almost dying, and other things. But to spare you all the details let’s just look at the past 2 years.

How Bad Could It Be?

It’s bad. Really bad. I was not planning on sharing much about all of this so soon, but this past week has me wanting to share so that you can see that life is far from perfect for most people.

2021 was difficult on many levels. We had a really tough reunification of 2 kiddos we had cared for for many years. On top of that, we also had a pretty big legal battle with one of our kiddos with medical needs that began that year. We ended that year in court on December 24th for the final day of 3 long days of hearings.

Ready for 2022

February of 2022 started with my husband losing his corporate job where he had been for over 25 years. He worked from our home for years and he wasn’t traveling so because of our beliefs, he filed 2 exemption requests for the poke, (one on his own and one through an attorney). He was denied and relieved of his position. We were blessed that he was quickly picked up by another company & we never skipped a beat. But for a husband who provides everything for his family, it was a hit to his mental health.

We thought 2022 would be pretty good despite the rocky start. So, we made plans for the year. We did have a few medical issues and some foster care issues with kiddos in our care.

Then came June, we had some crazy storms hit our area. One was so bad that an F1 tornado (I realize that an F1 is not a huge tornado but for our area, it is) touched down and our home was in its path.

That night we battled water coming in the ceiling and down the walls. Our oldest son was out all night as a firefighter & medic helping the community. When he returned home in the morning and went to go to the basement, where his room was, he realized it was flooded. He woke us up and with further inspection, we also had roof damage, ceiling and wall damage, porch damage, and damage to other areas of our property. Oh and no power for almost 24 hours. Many were without power for the week.

All of that damage and insurance only paid to replace the roof and repair the porch. The flooding, thousands of dollars of damage and the remediation of the basement, were not covered because of a technicality. A blessing in all of it is that we had savings to cover it. Well, technically it was our building fund to add on to our small house. You see we had 9 people living in less than 2000 square feet. And we were finally ready to start an addition and now that was on hold.

It Got Worse

In August of 2022 we actually had some great news as a judgment entry finally came down from the hearing in December of 2021, yes it took that long. Our case came out the way we had prayed. We were all on cloud nine and getting ready to celebrate our oldest daughter’s 22nd birthday. All great things.

October, I declared that we would get the house back in order and organized. The house was still in disarray as we were finishing up repairs from the June storm. Many of our son’s clothes were being kept in our dining room as we were working on his bedroom downstairs. We had gotten rid of so much from the flood but still needed to eliminate more since we would have to wait on the addition.

Cross at Ethan’s crash site. Built by his fellow firefighters.

I made plans and preparations to tackle all of this, but life did not go as expected.

Our World Crashed

October 2nd hubby and our teen daughter headed to church & then planned on going to the hardware store to get things to finish up the basement ceiling. I stayed home with the littles as the night had been hard with them. Our oldest kids stayed home with me. We had no idea our lives were about to change forever. Our oldest son Ethan headed out to run some errands and said “Be back soon, love you mama” as he headed out the door. He never came home. His work radio sounded for a squad to a motorcycle accident, possible DOA on the road he went on.  Our daughter and I listened to every word that came across his radio. Our sweet boy was dead. https://fox8.com/news/firefighter-dies-in-ashland-county-motorcycle-crash/

There are so many details and so many emotions, as the next days and weeks followed. I will probably share about it someday as there were so many ways that God showed up and our community was amazing. But for this part of the story, I want to point out that this was never part of our plan. And all other plans became pointless.

And Now?

Well, this past week was hard. We didn’t plan much to mark his 1-year heavenversary but we did a few things to make us feel better as well as his fire family. As last week was settling, I decided to once again set out to get things in order and plan my days and this column. I decided I would post on Mondays and Fridays. I would begin a perfect housekeeping plan.

Then Monday came, and I got a call from the school that one of our loves attended and the squad was on its way. She had broken her arm and had an obvious deformity. This week became ER visits, doctor appointments & surgery. We also had a family issue with my husband’s side of the family that we are still dealing with. It is now Friday, and I am still working on this post that probably won’t post till Saturday. Life is not going how I expected it to.

Why Share All of This?

I share all of this to say, we are so not in control of our lives. Yes, we can do our best to make it our best life, but life throws curves, stones, and even walls in your way. I am not going to get all theological in all of this but what I can say is through it all God has never abandoned us. NEVER. He has walked in front of us at times, beside us at times and lately, He has carried us. I know His ways are higher and I am trusting that. Yes, we are still planning things. One is that addition that we are now back to saving for, but I know that life does not always go as expected and as hard as it can be, nothing is as hard as October, and we can handle it as long as we hold onto Jesus.




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