I absolutely hate to write about myself! However, according to the “experts”, it is very important to share about yourself if you are going to write a blog. So here goes! Here are the basics. I was born and raised in Texas, until the age of 15 when my family moved to Oklahoma. I attended Oklahoma State University where I met an impressive young man named Richard Park, and we were married in 1980. We have two precious grown sons, Justin and Nathan and have lived in Southern California since 1984.
The story of how “The Park Place Post” came to be is a long and winding road, but I will try to keep it short and sweet. I have been through difficult times in my life, just like every one else, but a particular painful time in my life involved my oldest son Justin. My son Justin is 28 years old and was born with Down Syndrome. It was a great shock to us the day of his birth when we were told, as we had absolutely no idea. Although all of this was so new to us, we decided to just take him home and love him, and we did and we still do. He is after all, so very easy to love.
Justin was a healthy, happy and high functioning baby who grew into a healthy, happy and active little boy, until around the age of 7 and then my world crashed down around me. Around this age, he started to experience regressions in his skills, health issues he had never had before, and behavioral problems which came out of nowhere. My sweet, smart and easy going little boy was changing before my very eyes and I did not recognize him at all. As you can imagine the frustration and pain I felt as I went to doctor after doctor trying to tell them that this was not “normal” for my son. Justin who previously had great speech and was active and outgoing began to lose his words and went from using five word sentences to three to two and then only communicated with one word at a time. He became lethargic but then at times, manic. His once outgoing playful personality changed to one of a introverted boy who stopped playing with his younger brother, whom he had previously adored. As you can imagine, this was hard on my youngest son, Nathan and we tried hard to keep his life as normal and active as possible. It was exhausting.
I prayed and cried and stomped my foot and went on a crusade to “save my son”! The next few years are really a blur and very painful to recall. But needless to say just like most moms, I was on a mission to find “the answer” to restoring my son. As it turned out, there was not really a cause that anyone could pinpoint but a litany of health problems that went on and on and caused the changes in my son, i.e. sleep apnea, chronic sinus infections that would not end, allergies, hypothyroidism, severe case of pneumonia and celiac disease. After many doctors, diets, surgery, medications and supplement therapy, my son was better but would never return to his previous developmental level. He still only communicates using one word at a time. He is more active now but not as much as he once was. He can still be manic at times but much improved and thank GOD, he is healthy!
But the thing that I treasure most, “his personality” was restored. I call this a partial healing and I thank God for it every day. I see Justin smile that smile that is only meant for me and reach out to hug me and give me a kiss and I am grateful to God for restoring his “essence”. I have shared all this with you so that you will understand why I am publishing this blog. During this time in my life, I learned to truly have a closer relationship with God. He became my everything.
I have been a Christian since I was a young girl. I honestly remember always knowing Christ. As a child, I remember every time I was afraid or sad, I would talk to God standing in front of my bedroom window. For some reason I thought that was the best place to reach him. As I grew up I learned you can talk to God anytime, anywhere. He is always available. In this painful time when I was barely surviving, I spent time with God every day. I read the bible, I prayed A LOT! I asked many questions and tried desperately to get him to “heal my son”. I remember weeping, bargaining with God, begging with him. “I will do anything if you will just restore him to me”. I even remember asking God “Where are you in all of this, I cannot see you! I do not feel you!” I guess the point I am trying to make here is, I spent TIME with God. I was not always a compliant child of God and even at times I was angry with him. But I went to him always with my questions and my anger and all the feelings in between. He was THERE! He showed up and directed me and comforted me and built my faith when I thought I would lose it. He never abandoned me when I was angry with him and he understood why I was. God does not fault you your feelings, he wants you to share them with him. He wants your honesty.
Over the years as I have read my bible, one scripture kept showing up again and again. It was Luke 22:31,32. “And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, Strengthen your brethren.” I have certainly been through the “sifted like wheat” part and now it’s time for the “strengthen my brethren” part. This blog is my sincere desire to strengthen and grow your faith just as God has always strengthened mine.
I absolutely DO NOT have all the answers but I can point to the one who does. My heavenly father and his son Jesus Christ. If there is one thing I have learned during my life, it is that God is as close to you as your next breath. God seeks a close relationship with you through his son, Jesus Christ. He wants you to know him in a very personal way. I want you to know him as I do. My purpose is to introduce you to Jesus Christ. If you already know him, then my hope is that your faith will strengthen and grow from spending time here. Come meet my Jesus. He is yours too. Thank you for taking the time to read my articles and devotionals. Please feel free to leave comments. I truly appreciate them.