Jim’s Story

Site created on March 7, 2018

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Journal entry by Sara Grevengoed

One year ago today, Feb. 28, 2018… I will never forget that morning.  It began with me trying to make a simple phone call to my parents (who were on a long vacation out in Arizona, kick starting their retirement) and all I got was their voicemail.  I didn’t leave a message, I knew Mom would see I called & would call me back.  Turns out, while I was calling HER….SHE was making a 911 call at the very same time.  She called me right back in tears while EMTs worked on my Dad.  I could hear the fear in her voice.  Dad had suffered a heart attack & multiple strokes.  He was in BAD shape, and hospitalized for 42 days.  Many of you already know the trials our family had to overcome to be together with them out there, so far from home.  But one by one, each of us kids made our way out there, & spent time with Mom and Dad!  And finally, after SO MUCH HARD WORK, Mom and Dad made their way back to Iowa on April 10.  What has life been like this past year of recovery? It has been nothing short of a miracle!  Dad has worked SUPER hard, and is living LIFE!!!   But let me brag on my MOM a second!!  She is absolutely AMAZING!  There’s no other word to describe her!  She has been Dads nurse since day one, and his biggest support system!  This woman is so incredible! Believe it or not, in October,2018, she managed to take my Dad, ALL by herself, all the way to MAINE, to  see the lighthouses up and down the coast… something she has always wanted to do!!  YES….SHE DROVE THROUGHOUT THE ENTIRE TRIP (since Dad cannot).  Then….. early this month, February, 2019, Mom & Dad went BACK to Arizona for 10 days.  They even went to visit the hospital and re-hab center where Dad regained basically ALL of his mobility back.  Brought TEARS TO MY EYES to see the pics of Dad with his therapists.  And this will shock NONE of you….but the whole floor REMEMBERED my Mom & Dad!  I was not surprised at all to hear that! J  They leave quite an impression wherever they go!  J What a special trip, to be able to go back & visit a year later to let them know how he is doing! And just when you think my Mom has done it all, taking care of him (and traveling besides)…..they JUST returned home late last night from a nice warm vacation in the Dominican Republic!  Yep…Mom did it again!  She is incredible!  Mom and Dad have worked so hard to make these trips possible, and LIVING LIFE!!  (Even when life can sometimes throw you curve balls!)  I am SO grateful to our MIGHTY LORD, who has healed my father in ways that I still cannot comprehend.  When I flew to Arizona and spent those long, hard emotional days out there by my parents side, not knowing what would be the long-term outcome with my Dad, I prayed & prayed & prayed….and literally watched a miracle happen.  From no communication, not being able to stay awake longer than a few seconds, and no mobility…..to being able to see me,  try to speak sentences to me before I left…and able to reach out and hug me….All that progress after 15 days. WOW!  On the day I had to leave, I saw these miracles starting to unfold before my eyes….and days/weeks later, videos from my Mom of Dad working hard in therapy…and watched his progress over the following month ….there were just NO WORDS.  Only TEARS and PRAISE TO GOD!!!!  As you can tell, Mom & Dad have had a very, VERY eventful 365 days.  Full of many ups, and many downs.  But he is doing WELL!  He may never have 100% of his mobility/strength back, and some days he may struggle a little with his speech (only when extremely tired) but he is better & we PRAISE OUR LORD for this & thank him each & every day!  And I am SO PROUD of my Mom & Dad!  SO, SO, PROUD!!  Just wanted to update everyone since its been ONE YEAR….and again want to THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU, ALL for ALL the prayers while my Dad was in recovery, and prayers for my Mom out in Arizona doing this all alone!  We definitely felt them! How BLESSED are we that we live in a Christian community, surrounded by all of you….your prayers,  love and support!!  Love and Hugs to you all J Sara

Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding
Joshua 1:9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.

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