Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Changes are coming

Tree hunting prior to Christmas 2017

My last post was written sometime in 2015. Things have changed a lot since then. My girls are turning into young women at 11 and 14. As they have grown and as I have had the opportunity to listen to the voices of adult transracial adoptees, I have come to know and understand that they need to spend the rest of their growing up years in an area that includes a lot more people that look like them ("racial mirrors").
To that end, we have researched all sorts of places. We came to the conclusion that the Twin Cities is the best fit for us as a family (job for me, opportunities for them, not too huge for their small town mom, etc). I am excited to announce that we will be moving to Minneapolis in June. My last day in my clinic will be June 8 and we will move sometime later that month.
I have spent the last several weeks figuring out how I was going to tell my colleagues at Hardin Clinic, and today I finally announced. Today has been one of the more emotionally exhausting days that I have had. I am completely overwhelmed and grateful for the love and support that has been expressed by my co-workers. I pray that my friends and patients will understand as well.
I will be joining the faculty at a Family Medicine residency program associated with Hennepin County Medical Center. I am excited to spend more time teaching and bringing the rural perspective to the next generation of Family Medicine physicians.
My girls are excited about all of the possibilities being in a bigger city brings. They can get reconnected to their birth culture and learn Amharic (maybe even the language of Wolaiyta), learn to make injera, and all sorts of other things.
We are all both excited and terrified of the coming changes. Change is never easy. However, I know that this is where God is leading us next and He will take care of all of us in the process.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Broken pride

So much for regular blog posts. A lot has gone on this last year. Can't sum it up right now. Maybe I'll get back here and fill you all in. Suffice it to say that I am a year older and my girls are older and at least 2 feet taller.
We have spent the last week in Washington, DC. I have done some CME, and my mom and girls have been seeing the sites.

Thursday, March 20, 2014


A Minute of Margin: Restoring Balance to Busy Lives ~ 180 Daily Reflections

I currently don't have enough margin in my life to read all of Dr. Swenson's book Margin; so I am reading the above book on my Kindle. I got to hear Dr. Swenson speak at a CMDA (Christian Medical and Dental Association) retreat several years ago. I wish I had put more into practice at that time. If I had, maybe I wouldn't feel so tired and burned out right now. Each small reflection in this book talks about how to increase the margin in your life: financial, emotional, spiritual, etc. He asserts that our world is all about "more and more, faster and faster." I don't know anyone who would disagree with that.
After the reflections I read tonight, I need to make more changes. I need to be more deliberate in disconnecting from work and more intentional about connecting to my family.
One change that I made recently was to "give up" online shopping for Lent. That has helped my financial margin, but I need to go further. I need to break my addiction to technology. I think the worst thing I ever did for myself was get a smart phone. As I was reading this evening, I decided that as long as I am home, the cell phone needs to turn off at 7 PM. Everyone who needs to find me at night has my home number. I need to get that cell phone out of my hands and give a better example to my kids. How can I expect them to know how to handle technology, if I can't stop fiddling with my phone?
I know none of this is new to any of you. It isn't new to me, but God seemed to be telling me that if I know it, I need to do it. As if He is looking down on me saying, "You give such good advice to your patients and their parents about talking and reading and minimizing technology. How about you take some of it too?"
So with that, I am going to sign off of the computer, turn off my phone, and go back to reading a book. It might take me an extra day to respond to an email or check in on Facebook, but true emergencies rarely happen there.
Do yourself a favor, make enough margin in your life to see your loved ones without a screen in between. And if there is more time after that, pick up one of Dr. Swenson's books.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Where are you supposed to be?

Papa and the girls (Christmas 2010)

My father, the girls' papa, just got out of surgery tonight. Now, he didn't plan to have surgery today. It is one of those things that just happens. If he had been planning it, it wouldn't have been today and I wouldn't be in Montana and my step-mom wouldn't be have been in Washington.
However, unbeknownst to us, God was planning for my dad to have surgery today. He knew that Dad would be in an ER under the influence of drugs without family to advocate for him and keep the rest of the family informed. God had a plan for that. My best friend from college lives not far from the ER where my dad sought treatment. I texted her and in another hour or so when Dad came out of a long study, my friend and her husband were there for him. She "wasn't supposed" to be home today. She was "supposed" to be in another city working all day. She was also "supposed" to be in San Francisco for dinner tonight. Both things got rescheduled and she was home, not where she was "supposed" to be. God knew exactly where she and her husband were supposed to be today and He made sure it could happen. As a result, I was blessed to know that someone was there to hear what my father couldn't through the cloud of pain and medications and able to relay information on to me and the rest of the family.
So, next time you find yourself not where you are "supposed" to be, remember that Someone else may have other ideas. You may find yourself being an immense blessing to others. That is what my friend and her husband were to my family today.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

My legacy?

This is my "grandma" Lydia. She lived right behind us while I was growing up and was sort of a third/adopted grandma. She was such an important part of my father's family that my middle name is Lydia after her.

Lydia's granddaughter, and my classmate, recently shared this photo on Facebook and it made me start to think about a lot of different things.

The photo was taken by my Grandma Dorie in her front dining room. Evidently, my grandma and Lydia would take a break from their work to read their Bibles. After seeing this picture, I realized that I could look at Lydia's or my grandmother's Bibles and find out all sorts of things about them, their walk with God, their struggles and their faith. That made me start thinking about what my Bible would say about me to my children or grandchildren.

I realized it wouldn't say much as I have been using a digital Bible lately. It's hard to leave much of a legacy in a digital Bible. I don't even go back and read the notes I made in my digital version. I have however, re-read notes I have put in some of my earlier Bibles.

So, I have gone back to reading my hard-copy Bible. I'm making notes in it. It is getting messy and defaced. But, as long as I have it, it will show my kids, grandkids, etc. what I was working on and thinking about in different passages.

Someday, I would like my grandchildren to see a picture of me reading my Bible and have all sorts of wonderful, pleasant memories come back just like I experience every time I look at this picture.

What physical legacy are you leaving for the next generations in your life?

Friday, May 31, 2013

More pictures

Here are a few more pictures of the last several months.

Kidist and Finley (Dr. Ashley's son, born the day after her birthday)

Meskerem in Salem, OR
Meskerem and me at a mother-daughter retreat in Oregon (one of my favorite photos).

Meskerem batting in softball

Kidist running after a hit in t-ball

Dot supporting Kidist's t-ball team

My silly girls in the Chico pool just a week ago.

I need to devote an entire blog post to the mother-daughter retreat that Meskerem and I went to in April. It was both wonderful and difficult.
Now to enjoy the summer (lots of fun things planned). Not sure how much I will be blogging, but I will try to be better. Just don't hold your breath. =)

Year in Review

Today was the last day of school and I don't think I have posted since before the first day. Sorry folks. Life has sort of been busy. I am sure none of you have any idea what that is like. :-) Here are a few photos of what we have been doing lately.

First Day of School
At Dr. Ashley's baby shower (and Kidist's 6th birthday) in October.

Halloween 2012

Kidist in the Missoula Children's Theater production of The Tortoise and the Hare (she was part of the Fan Club)

Meskerem in the same play (she was a Glama Gecko)

Meskerem showing off new clothes

Roller-skating in Sword's Park in Billings on the new roller-skates Ayat gave them.

Next post will include a few more pictures from the spring. Thanks for putting up with me.