Monday, January 1, 2018

Good grief was that a station interruption or WHAT??!!

I haven't been here in so long that I've no idea what I've even shared with you about what all has happened.
Mostly I've left it up to Facebook to keep everyone updated.

When we left off with the mystery, I was a bit frustrated that I was receiving very little feedback from you all, with no one joining along anymore or sharing progress. But it turns out that all is good because my life turned topsy turvey chaotic after my last post. I know many of you have kept up with it on FB but for those of you that haven't, here is the streamlined account as to why I up and disappeared. I've entertwined the story with photos of our eventful last few months.

This past fall my husband took a terrible turn for the worse. He had five different hospital stays, one rehab stay (these totalling 49 days), 4 different ambulance rides, and one 9 day stay in a coma.

Most of the time Stephen took it like a trooper, but I had to be honest with him and tell him that his daddy just might not make it. Some days were really rough. 

When I last left you I was so excited about my new job and my new found days off and extra pay. But, thanks to my roller coaster life that I've never been able to calm down, I had to leave the new awesome job and go back to the lower paying grocery store clerk job. (Much better flexibility options for someone dealing with a husband who tends to keep life never boring.) I, of course, had to take a small cut in pay at the grocery job than I was even making before. 

Things got better once Jerry was out of his coma. Stephen would read library books to him, whether he was awake or not. It took several weeks for Jerry to understand what was going on around him but Stephen insisted on seeing him daily. 

This is Jerry's first bite of food in several weeks. Stephen was there to oversee him to make sure he couldn't choke. It took weeks before he could drink water or eat normally.

BUT, in the midst of all that, it actually was a very good thing for me to take back my old job. I was able to pop in and out of work whenever I could while Jerry was in his coma. If I had to miss, no big deal. My boss and co workers were so, so supportive.
And, due to the extreme financial hardships we've had over the last year, we were adopted by many kind people, from fellow quilters and co workers, to my high school friends and teachers, churches and even the local EMS crew! I missed so much work and his KU hospital stays are very pricey for me. I had bill issues that I couldn't resolve while he was in his coma that left us with fees and such... and thanks to the generosity of many, not only were all the financial needs covered, but our entire Christmas was provided for us. I didn't have to worry about a single thing other than working and caring for my family. 

Seth turned 20 while Jerry was in the coma. We had a quick, silly party while running home from the hospital one night. 

Jerry's bday was next, and happened while he was in rehab; his mom surprised him with a visit from Texas.

Stephen's bday wish was that his dad would be home from the hospital. He was (it was December 23rd) but Jerry wasn't well enough to celebrate with Stephen and was in bed all day. 

Jerry came home finally just before Christmas. He is still home and is doing ok. He had a procedure that has made life much harder for him, but without it we would have lost him.

Amazingly just two days after Stephen's bday, Christmas day, Jerry was alert and able to spend the day with the family. 

Today, New Years Eve, I finally sat down to sew just for a few moments. Not long as I worked today, and I work tomorrow. When I am not at work, my days are filled with being a caretaker (Jerry needs much more care now; we have multiple nurses and therapists via home health for him as well); and still being with our now 8 year old boy, as well as taking on full household responsibilites.

We've gone through major life changes in the last year.
We lost everything it feels like (car, business, home); but we also gained the world. ( Anytime you've watched a family member come back from death's doorstep, none of that material stuff matters AT ALL!).
We've seen outpouring of love from so many people.

I've closed my quilt business for good, but that does not mean that I quit. I just have to take things much slower. ALL of my designs are now released for free in the EPP group on Facebook. I've been given much, and I am just giving back. I've many, many more to release, and I hope to keep releasing always. For free. My designer self has had to step back and go away for awhile, but there are seasons, you know. They come and go. Leave and return. Some day it will be spring again for me, and when it is my designs will develop fresh, new, in perfect time.

The next mystery clue is now ready and will be posted in a day or two.

If you want a more up to date account about our personal life; friend me on Facebook. I never mind sharing our story and I  update often. But don't come looking for quilt stuff. I tend to keep that for the EPP group and it's been a ghost town this fall, thanks to that crazy husband of mine!

Happy 2018. I have no idea if it will be an easier year. As the clock struck midnight tonight and my husband took our son into his arms and prayed, Thanking God for allowing him to live to another was hard as we both know that he walks a very thin line now. He's frail. He could go at anytime. We all know that. Or he could live another 6 years, because he's made it through these six years, hasn't he? My walking miracle of a husband is a testament to there is a God and there is no other explanation for his seamingly 9 lives.

I am truly sorry I disappeared. This was the worst ever, EVER that we've dealt with concerning him and I just couldn't think quilting at all. Thank you for your patience.

See you very soon I hope.
Ms. Hillbilly.


  1. Thanks for your post- so glad to hear from you again =sending love and prayers-thanks again for the inspiration to head to my sewing box!

  2. I started out watching your videos and learned from them. I have followed along on your journey...but I felt I didn't know you well enough to respond. But just had to say.." praise the Lord" !!! Praying your new year brings you joy!! Lois

  3. Happy New Year Tonya, Stephan, Jerry and the rest of the family. Good thoughts and prayers are with every day. May 2018 be a very good year for you.

  4. I hope and pray that 2018 is a better one for you all. Family is the most important thing in the world and to lose or face losing a loved one makes you reassess your priorities. You are such a strong faithful person, I take my hat off to you. Thanks for the update and please take care of yourself. Prayers for all of you wing your way.