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Here's the Story

Sometimes I look around for the camera. I am positive we are in a reality show. Sometimes, I think we should be.  

Growing up in the 70’s there was no such thing as a reality show. The Brady Bunch was about as real as it gets. At least to me, it was real! I envied this family whose biggest struggles were an occasional tarantula in a suitcase or Marcia’s broken nose. Let’s not forget Alice. I have wished my whole life we could have an Alice. I would gladly let Alice live with us and let Sam visit when ever he wanted. In every episode, whatever family problem was presented, it was solved in thirty minutes and everyone lived happily ever after.

Once when Olivia was home sick, she watched a Brady Bunch Marathon and I told her within 15 seconds of the opening, I knew exactly what was going to happen. I did. Point made.

No, the Brady Bunch was not a real family. It was pretend. The Dad was gay, Greg was in love with his TV mom, and Marcia was bulimic. The darling littles of the show took a different turn from acting as well. Cindy grew up to be a pot farmer and Bobby became an alcoholic who now leads a quiet life making concrete countertops.

I guess I thought their lives would always be perfect. 

Where is this going? I didn’t start out writing this thinking about the Brady Bunch. I was thinking about our little Landon. (Remember we have Big Landon, the boyfriend too, so I always feel it important to clarify.)

Landon broke his leg on Saturday in a freak fall in their kitchen. This is the kid, who if I ever imagined him breaking bones (truthfully we all did,) it would be something daring and risky. Like jumping off the deck to see if he could fly or sledding down the stairs because there wasn’t any snow.

It was a long weekend for Landon and his parents. He spent it not wanting to move and his right leg in an air cast. His parents worked hard to help him manage the pain. Dreading and looking forward to Monday coming and getting a permanent cast. 

I’ve worked hard these last few days to remain trusting in God to heal and comfort them. To be available for whatever they need. We have had a lot of baby time around here lately. Sunday, we had both Otto and Levi for the whole day and honestly they were so fun! Talk about keeping your mind off things. First of all it’s busy. Who needs to eat? Who pooped? Not what do I smell, but rather why do I smell? Olivia and Craig were here too and we handled it all no problem...but WOW!

I spent some time in devotions Monday morning doing some catchup from the weekend. I was also trying to ease the pit in my stomach as I anticipated what Landon and his parents had yet to go through.

Isaiah 41:13 jumped out at me, "For I hold you by your right hand. I am the Lord your God and I say to you - don’t be afraid I am here to help you."

What I needed help with in the moment was calming my fears. I was scared. Not just for the trial of the day ahead, but for what had been bothering me since Landon's accident Saturday.  

I’ll try to explain.  

Last weekend, the guys all went up north to work on the hunting cabin and the womenfolk and littles were left behind. Friday night the girls gathered for pizza and baby entertainment. 

Truthfully, with the three boys it quickly became a shit show. Albeit an entertaining one. Abby and Otto stayed overnight and I had the pleasure of Otto’s gummy smile to greet me Saturday morning. The day was planned out.  

First things first, my training run. Thank you God-  my friend Amy wanted to go with me. We conquered 8 miles and I was flying high! Ready to get cleaned up and then go get Landon and Levi for the afternoon so Steph could have some alone time. That would be followed up by a quiet evening at home with my guy.

My weekend was planned, things were going well and I had no reason to think it wouldn’t continue like I had planned. Until it didn’t.

This is the hard part for me. When something happens suddenly to completely change the course of life. Like sweet boy breaking his leg.

Other ones that stick out in my head that brought back this familiar anxiety: 

  • The phone call that the doctors are seeing something wrong on Otto’s ultrasound. 

  • Walking into a meeting on a Monday night when I get a heartbreaking phone call from Abby that she was having a miscarriage. “Mom, come now. It's bad.” 

  • To sit in an ultrasound seeing a baby on the screen that we knew would not survive.  

  • Craig running in the house on a Saturday morning yelling that his Dad just had a stroke and we needed to go NOW. 

  • When I cried out to God to rescue me from the pit of alcohol. 

  • When on another Saturday morning, the police came to the door and told me my brother had been killed.

I could keep going and going. I never could list all those moments any more than I could list the ones that are to come.

I’m talking about those heart stopping moments in life that I cry out, “God, WHERE ARE YOU?!” I imagine he might be insulted. He has assured us over and over again in his Word that he will never leave us or forsake us, but like an annoying, whiny, child I keep asking.

Romans 8:18 is one of my favorites because it reassures us of God's promise. Better days ahead. If I look back at all those things I listed, it is so true. There were many better days ahead. Days that were sweeter than ever because of the hardship that preceded it.

The cast went on early Tuesday morning and even though it was hard to watch Landon cry out in pain, so many things went right. A sweet gentle nurse put his cast on, no new X-rays needed, and the break didn’t affect his growth plate. Those are all good positives in the world of broken bones. Stephanie and I talked about how we could really feel the prayers that were being prayed while we were there.

Now, the reality is, Landon won’t be up and running around in thirty minutes with a few commercials thrown in. Alice is not there to clean and cook while Stephanie and Loren attend to Landon’s needs. However, I do not ever recall God being on the Brady Bunch. That’s too bad because he’s the star on the Hoppen show and I don’t know where we would be without him. Our ratings would probably suck.

By the way our show is called, “What’s Hoppening.”  

Peace on your weekend,



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