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unexpected

Yes, you read that right. This post may seem somewhat darker of a post but I don’t mean for it to be. I just feel like sharing some. Don’t worry! There is some good and happy stuff at the end. =D

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It was the last Monday in April of 2009. I went to work at the clinic like normal. Normal time. Normal outfit. Normal everything. By lunch, I did not feel normal. My chest felt tight and breathing was getting more difficult.

Oh, it must be the humidity.

By mid afternoon, I was wheezing and feeling a little light-headed. Upon telling my coworkers, they said, “It’s just the stress getting to you. You’ll be fine by tomorrow.”

I went home and went to bed early. I slept like a rock and woke up feeling better. Then it started again. This time, it hurt every time I tried to take a breath. I didn’t tell anyone this time and acted like normal. I told Will once I got home and made sure I retired early again. This night was a sleepless one. So was the next one.

By Wednesday afternoon, my coworkers had noticed my change in demeanor and suggested I talk to one of the doctors. Within 5 minutes of sitting in his office, I was handed a prescription for an inhaler and preventative asthma medication. I went home and Will and I decided to just try to have a nice relaxing night (in case it just was due to stress).

By dinner, I was barely able to breathe. All of a sudden, I felt like my chest was completely stuffed. I couldn’t even suck in air at all. My legs went weak. Then, there went the arms. The room became hazy. And I started to freak out.

(Now, I knew this had to be the worst thing I could do at this point but… come on. Would you not freak out?)

Will managed to stay as calm as possible. He held me and helped me calm down. Then, he helped me start breathing again. Then, we silently cried as I breathed with him.

I went for a walk when my sight came back. I don’t remember being able to feel my legs. I don’t remember looking before I walked into the street. I do remember seeing snow on the ground but being so, so hot. I do remember being so grateful to hear my sobs because that meant I could breathe, no matter how much it hurt. I do remember Will meeting me at the park bench across the street, holding me, and pleading with me to let him take me to the hospital. I refused but promised him I would talk to the Dr. the next day. I could barely breathe all night and Will was terrified I would stop completely. Neither of us slept.

The next day consisted of an enormous amount of tests. After the tests was a breathing treatment. It resulted in a bad reaction and everyone becoming hysterical upon finding me in the room fallen over. Not surprisingly, I was sent home pending results.

We went to pick up my prescriptions on Friday and tried calling into my part-time job. Due to the low amount of employees, I had to work. As understandable as this is, it seemed impossible at the time. I went to work as planned and worked throughout the weekend. I ended up being able to breathe freely by Saturday night and had no episodes after that.

It was now the first Monday in May of 2009.  I went to work at the clinic like “normal.” “Normal” time. “Normal” outfit. “Normal” everything.

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A lot of you didn’t know this story. I was ok with that for a long time; mainly because I hate hearing the endless amounts of “I’m so sorry!!” and “I’ll pray for you.”* However, I felt the need to tell you all now.

Tonight, I felt that same pain in my chest. It hasn’t gone away and I am a little concerned that it is getting worse. Most of you are probably yelling through your computers for me to go see a doctor. Unfortunately, I do not think there is much they can do. You see, since the last time this has happened I have been informed of my condition. This is not stress and it isn’t in my head. It is my body’s way of trying to tell me there is something very wrong with my body. I can guarantee that any pharmaceuticals that would be shelled out to me would only worsen the problem that is causing this. I already know what is wrong but I can’t afford to take care of it (right now).

Is it serious? Yes. Could I die? Probably. Do I want something from you? Yes.

In fact, that is the only reason why I share this story. I am hoping I can get something from you. And that something is…

Prayer.

I don’t ask for a lot, but I am asking for this. Will you please pray for me? You don’t have to tell me you will. Just do it. You don’t have to apologize. You have done nothing wrong. You don’t have to feel bad. God knows what He is doing. :)

You don’t have to pray. I know some of you don’t believe it will do anything because you don’t believe there is anyone listening. But hey, thanks for reading anyway. It shows you care and that is way better than any, “I’m sorry” you could say. :)

*DON’T GET ME WRONG: I really appreciate the prayers and concerns in serious situations. However, I am a hugger. So, instead of telling me what I already know you are going to say, just hug me. :)

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I know this is a horrible transition but…

Ok!! On to the fun stuff! I wanted to share with you all that Will and I are heading to Nashville on Monday! We will be moving there. Will already has a job lined up but we will be looking for both a place to stay and for a job for me. So, if you know of anything, let us know! :)

We are taking a giant leap and moving to a city where we will be starting over completely. We are nervous and excited. So many butterflies! We really don’t know what to expect but are happy we have each other. I am trying to decide if I want to pursue a career in photography once we move or just work on my personal projects with it. It is a big decision and I think once we have a home and I have a position somewhere, it will be easier to decide.

I actually have tons to share but I feel like this post is getting way too long. I will save the rest for a post in the next couple days. :)

I truly love you all and am so grateful for you. Thank you, thank you, thank you for reading my blog!

love, erin

P.S. I can’t figure out how to turn off comments on this post. I am not sure there is a way to turn it off one post? So, I wanted to let you all know that I am not looking for comments. Just silent support (other than prayer). :)

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You all know this, though.

I am popping in to apologize, yet again, for being silent here. My current reason is because my town looks like this right now:

I think it goes without saying that I am needed more in other places than here right now. Before any of you worry, Will and I are ok. So is my family. We were really lucky that we didn’t experience any of the great loss so many did. However, we are working hard to help out our friends and fellow residents. I hope you understand. We would love for any of you to help out if you can! We actually have a few ideas up my sleeve for ways you all can help in the next few months. If you want to help now, please email me and I will direct you to several places that you can help most.

I will be back. I just can’t promise a definite timeline. I know, I know. I really stink at keeping up with this place of mine. I really want to be here. I do. One day, life will feel a little more “normal.” Today isn’t that day. Hopefully, soon! In the mean time, you can keep up with me some on Twitter. :)

I miss you all!

Love, Erin

So, I am sitting at Starbucks, which has free wi-fi now (Woohoo!), waiting on Will to get done with his first meeting as the Assistant Store Manager here in Joplin. I am so, so excited for him! As most of you know, we both have gone through a lot this past year (along with our families). So this opportunity coming along makes us ecstatic. It is definitely a change because Joplin is about an hour from Springfield and, as of now, we are *not* moving. This means quite a lot of commuting but it is worth it. :)

One of my best friends and my dad both live here so that is something that feeds the urge to move here. Sure, my current town is alright. It is filled with creative people and it is a great place to settle down. I am just not satisfied there. I hope that this change is the beginning of quite a few in the right direction. We have tons of ideas up our sleeves that we are slowly making happen. It is a really exciting (and a little bit scary) time for us and I am very hopeful. :)

I have kept a not-so-little decision secret from you all for a while and so I feel now is the time to share. :)

In the next couple of weeks, I will be starting a journey completely different than I ever have before. I will be working more for myself for the first time ever. I am excited, I am scared, and I am inspired by this. The main focus of my life will now be photography. Sure, I will have my “normal” every day job at Forever 21 (which I LOVE). However, most of my time will be spent thinking, brainstorming, and working toward achieving my dreams. What are these dreams? Well, if you have paid attention you will know that my main dream is to become a full-time photographer.

I don’t just want to be a photographer. I want to inspire people by capturing the beautiful things, big and small. And the overlooked. And the ugly. And the sad. Happy. Funny. ALL of it can inspire, teach, and help grow.

There are a few ways I plan on doing this. Of course, the most obvious is by taking photos for people who hire me. That is one area that you can help with. I am open to traveling anywhere in the US, as long as the trip will provide what I need financially. That means if I were to travel to a different state, I would need X amount of shoots scheduled to get me there, feed me, and give me a small bit of profit. :)

Other ways will be shared in the coming months. You know, as things continue to work in our favor. :))

The best part about having made this decision, is that people starting contacting me literally within a couple days, even before I started talking about it! It was such a great confirmation for me. My weeks keep filling up and I feel more and more confident in the photos I am giving to people. I have also started working with some ministries and organizations to utilize the huge heart God gave me for others. I feel like this is the perfect time and place in my life for this to happen. I would love to continue to make this work so my dream can become truth in my life. I would also love if you would help support me in this. You can do this easily by simply continuing to come here and join me as I move along in my life. Spread the word about my photography and help me get shoots. When I share the final part of my pursuit, help me in ways that you can. Every one of you is so important to me, which is why I share this with you. :)

I just posted quite a few new photos here. Please check them out and leave comments telling me what you loved, or offering suggestion. It also would mean a lot for you to add me here, or here, or here. :)

I seriously love you guys more than I could express and hope you know how grateful I am for those of you who have been faithful friends, even when I haven’t been able to keep up with you as much as I would like.

Anyway, I will stop before your eyeballs fall out of your head from too much reading. Be back soon! Hopefully by Thursday! :)

love, love, love, scout

Source: one: me; two: here; three: me; four: me; five: me; six: me; seven: here

Will, Emjay, and I all spent the night chatting it up. It was rather fun. HOWEVER, I completely forgot to hit pause when Emjay did. Good times.

:)

love, scout

** NOTE: Will Vastine is full of crap and nothing he says in this video should be taken as fact or used against me. That said, enjoy the video. ;)

Is the title clear enough on this week’s prompt? I hope so. Next week, I will post photos for next week’s prompt as well as this week’s. Yes, two prompts! So, you get to take photos for both and submit them by next Wednesday. Yay! :)

I made the decision to postpone because I have declared this week “Family week” for me. I have been trying to gain perspective this week and remind myself what is really important to me. I knew the best way to do this is to spend time with those people dearest in my life. I love them very much and am thankful for them. :)

It has been a nice break. For the first time in… I don’t even know how long, I have been able to relax and not worry about a job. I mean, I still need money. I should probably be stressing out a little more than I am, but I don’t want to just yet. :)

I think I have decided to really take this time as an opportunity to work on my own. Try to expand my photography and turn it into a business, instead of just a hobby. I also want to really work hard on making my etsy shop as great as I can. I definitely can’t do it on my own, of course. I need your help. Your support, features, purchases, booking of shoots, encouragement… It all helps and means so very much to me. Thank you to all of you who have helped me in ways you could so far. And thank you to everyone who will. :)

I plan on doing some work the next few days so that I can add new items to the shop. I plan on adding some baby and children headbands, possibly new prints, and hopefully some necklaces. Any suggestions or ideas for items you would like to see added? :)

Alright, I am off to spend the rest of the evening with my sister and boyfriend. We are watching Sigur Ros’ Heima DVD. It’s so beautiful! I love you guys. Have a great night.

love, scout

P.S. Please check out my lovely friend’s giveaway on her blog. Tonight is the last chance to enter. She is posting the winner tomorrow! :)

Grr!!! The Internet decided to stop working at my place and it’s too late to go anywhere else. I am so sorry guys but I have to postpone the prompt post until tomorrow. :-(

Believe me, I was yelling up a storm as I discovered this. I decided to at least post a quick little update from my phone letting you know what happened. I’m really sorry and will be back tomorrow.

Leave me something fun to read or that will make me smile. :)

Love, scout

P.s. Look what I’ve been up to this week so far! :))))))))

Some of you may have noticed over the last few months that I have been consistently tired and ill. There is a reason behind it. I have been sick. Luckily, some close friends and family recently brought to my attention their concern for me to get seen by a health professional. Upon going to my appointment, I found that the problem was something that was hidden and I have been struggling with my whole life. I won’t go into much more detail. I just thought I would share this with you, since it has been an every day struggle for me.

Right now, I am taking over a dozen pills and drinking some nutritional stuff twice daily. It’s a crazy change and I am not done adding changes onto all of it, but it is worth it. In the next few months, I am going to start knowing what it is like to experience life actually feeling pretty good. I can’t remember the last time I knew what that was like! It is exciting and I hope that this is the start of something that keeps getting better. :)

Well, now that I have shared a bit with you… I would like to present the contest I have thought up!

As you all know, I am having an Alice in Wonderland Inspired costume party on Saturday (eek! so excited!). No party is fun without music and I want to make sure the playlist is perfect! So, here is where the contest comes in.

I want you to come up with a playlist made up of 10-20 songs that you think would work great for my party. Keep in mind that everyone will be dressed up in costumes that go along with more of an “We’re All Mad Here” or “Anything is Possible” type theme. Also keep in mind that there will be children there so keep songs appropriate for the kiddos’ ears. :) Once you finish your playlist, send it to erinsunday3.5@gmail.com by Friday night, March 6th, by 7pm CST. My party guests and I will look over each of the playlists and decide which suits our liking best! I will announce a winner Saturday night.

There are two possible prizes that I have compiled from my craft stash!!

Prize A consists of: A handbag perfect for customizing; some fun ribbon and buttons; vintage appliques and fabric; vintage tie scraps (from my mom’s quilting collection); a vintage handkerchief.

Prize B consists of: an old drawing pad (hardly used); watercolor pad; blank 8×10 canvas; chalk pastel kit; 2 “grow-your-own” turtles (ha ha); 2 buttons (the pin kind); some pogs with a container; a mini easel; grizzly bear stencil/bookmark; felt letters.

I will make an announcement here Friday evening about what time on Saturday I will announce the winner. The winner will get his or her choice of the two prizes. THEN… I will draw a name from all of the others that participated and that person will receive the other prize. Both winners will also get a copy of the last mix I made Will (cute, huh?). :)

THAT’S NOT ALL!! :)))

For all others who participated, I will draw two names to receive an 8×10 print of their choice from my shop (must be a photo taken by me). Also, I will put in your name for each of the following:

If you tweet about this giveaway, leave a comment with your username.

If you blog about this giveaway, leave me a comment with the link.

If you post about it on Facebook, leave me a comment with your profile link. If you haven’t added me as a friend and your profile is private (I can’t see your status), it won’t count.

For this last drawing, your name can be put in multiple times! So if you buy something from my shop before the end of the giveaway, I will put your name in 5 times! :)

(I plan on adding these headbands by Thursday!)

Alright, I hope that you all participate. This is the first giveaway I have ever done and I want to have a  good turnout. I will be adding to each  prize as the days go one, so what you see isn’t necessarily all you will get. :)

I love you all! I am so excited to have you as readers and a lot of you as friends. You are very special to me. :)

love, scout