Trudging through peanut butter…

Along with my running, music has been very therapeutic while I have been on this journey with mom .   I have started a TaylorStrong playlist.  Normally the songs that minister to me are ones I hear while I am running.  But, the two songs below came in a different way. The first came from a dear friend from college.  She suggested I listen to He Said…I am so glad she did! It couldn’t be any better for the journey we are on.  The second one I heard on the way back from a very grueling 20 mile training run…it was horrible. 🙂  I know a lot of you would say 20 miles would be horrible, but it is what I do. Usually they are hard but not HORRIBLE!  This particular song is about a relationship but I heard it through different ears…it was about the storm we have been living through and the one I had just come through just 30 minutes before. 🙂  Enjoy! (Lyrics at the bottom of the blog.)

He Said – 1 Crew

Every Storm – Gary Allan

Today’s blog is not such much about mom and her recovery, but about a realization I had that goes along with her recovery.  We have been told all along she would move at a snail’s pace(or a turtle’s.)  Brain injuries are ones you don’t just bounce back from and start right back where you left off.  They take time.  Your expectations may be high and that is good…but don’t expect to get there too fast.    Mom is a fighter. We know that. She is ready to be where she left off NOW!  It is a slow process and though we see improvement daily…it is slow.  She will get there. We have NO doubt.  We are encouraged every single day by what we see and how she is progressing.  She is well on her way.  It is just a slow go…as we were told. 🙂  Major trauma produces major recovery.

This week is an important one. We take mom back to Springfield to follow-up with the neurosurgeon and the rehab doctor.  We look forward to hearing great news! We are hopeful she will receive the go ahead to have her bone flap replaced very soon.  Once this happens mom and dad will have even more new normals to unwrap.  We have read once the bone flap is replaced things kind of right themselves within the body…makes sense! She will be one piece again! 🙂  She will not be as restricted due to the fact her head is all together.  We are hoping that this will make transitions at home easier.  So, Thursday is a big day…pray we receive great news!

Now to my realization…I too am moving slower and meant to move slowly during this process and on this journey.  What do I mean? Well, after running Boston 2013 and living through the circumstances around the race I decided I wanted to run another marathon before the September deadline and try to better my current (Boston 2013) qualifying time.  I figured that a lot of people would try to qualify and run Boston 2014.  My qualifying time did not leave much wiggle room. 🙂 I have lived this before…qualifying but not getting in because I still wasn’t fast enough.  Now, don’t get me wrong, I am running Boston 2014 with Team Hoyt no matter what…I just wanted to run as a qualified runner this go around…did you get that? I wanted to run…not necessarily God wanted me to run!  So my plan was to train hard and run Tupelo Marathon on September 1 and get that 3:45:00 time that I so desperately have been striving for…again, MY PLAN not HIS PLAN.

All summer, even after mom’s incident, I decided I was still going to do it…no matter what.  Well, I am as stubborn as they come.  I was going to train hard even though I was sleep deprived. I was going to train hard even though I was stressed beyond belief.  I was going to train hard and hit every magic pace even though I am living away from the comforts of my home.  I was going to train hard even though I was in the hills and humidity of Arkansas…I could go on but I won’t.  Am I complaining? NO!

I am saying it took me almost 2 months to realize I AM meeting the expectations the Lord set before me not the ones I set before me. He had different plans.   I am giving myself permission to train hard and not worry about the outcome because I am doing what HE wants me to do.  I have verbalized I was there already in previous blogs….but I was wrong.   It took me running a grueling 20 mile training run an hour slower than normal for me to get it.  For me to be happy I covered the miles. For me to release the expectation of maybe 3:45:00 is not what is in store after all.  Is that okay? YES, because I am running the race He set before me and that is ELT – or Eddie Lou Taylor – or MOM!

Hebrews 12. 1-3

Hebrews  12.1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

Mom, dad and I are in this together…we are fighting the battle He gave us.  Our whole family has been by our side in prayer and in person at different times…we are making it and we are making it well.  Slowly but we are trudging along like ‘turtles in peanut butter.’ (Good thing we love peanut butter!)


My realization came after a great talk with Mike after my 20 miler.  He had to remind me that the journey we are on is one God put us on.  It is one wrapped in unconditional love.  It is one that He allowed us to traverse and His glory will come from it.  Mom’s recovery is the main goal not a BQ.

I also had some wise words sent to me via text that helped me put it all in perspective as well:

I know that god has big plans for you. I would not stress over speed drills. Your plate is full and you are doing as god leads you to do. Being in his will is what is important. Your mom was blessed when she had you and is now being blessed again. Enjoy your time with her and the journey that god has you on. There are small things that he wants to reveal to you in this big picture. When we shift our usual focus off of our usual routines, doors  and opportunities are presented. He must have a bigger plan for you and may want you to continue on your Boston journey with team Hoyt, changing nothing because you are positively influencing others during the journey. He may want you to focus on that, him, and the journey, rather than a qualifying time. Because he loves you and Yes You Can. Love you

Then a different conversation with another friend:

I said:  “It’s just hard! But God has me here for a reason and it’s not a BQ it’s ELT! Aka-mom. :)”

Her reply:   We talked about that this a.m. you both have already qualified for Boston, so you should run the next one just because you can.  Yes, and it is another “race” that has made you stronger. (referring to mom)

I have been truly blessed by family and friends that set me straight when I need it. They do it with love and the do it with care. God is blessing us during a peanut butter trudging.  When we slow down we see the beauty around us.  We have laughed so much.  We have reminisced about the old days. 🙂  We have taken time to smell the roses.  We have even taken time to watch eggs hatch and become baby birds…another slow, beautiful process.

IMG_5887 IMG_5972 IMG_5977God has a way of slowing us down…literally.  We are on this blessed journey for a reason.  And we are surrounded by love from all over…He is showing us that daily.

After having my pity party about my 20 mile run I rewarded myself with chocolate…of course!  This is what I received in return…confirmation!IMG_5982

What a message! I needed it…

Then another reminder came…

IMG_5990Mom was reminded of this herself when she received an amazing gift in the mail from people she has never met. They surrounded her with love and prayer because of who she is and they know how special and strong she is…

IMG_5985TaylorStrong – LGLG – Romans 8.28

Let Go and Let God

Romans 8.28 –

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who   have been called according to his purpose.

Like the chorus says:

I won’t give you more
More than you can take
And I might let you bend
But I won’t let you break
And no, I’ll never ever let you go
And no, don’t you forget what He said

And I have to remember: We are exactly where God wants us to be!

He Said – 1 Crew

So your life feels like
It don’t make sense
And you think to yourself
I’m a good person
So why do these things keep happening?
Why you gotta deal with them
You may be knocked down now, but don’t forget
What He said, He said

I won’t give you more
More than you can take
And I might let you bend
But I won’t let you break
And no, I’ll never ever let you go
And no, don’t you forget what He said

Who you worrying, and what you’re going through
So don’t let it get the best of you
‘Cause God knows everything you need
So you ain’t gotta worry
You may be knocked down now
But just believe what He said


Don’t fear when you go through the fire
Hang on when it’s down to the wire
Stand tall and remember what He said

Every Storm – Gary Allan

so your standin’ in the middle of the thunder and lightnin’
i know you’re feelin’ like you just can win but your tryin’
its hard to keep on keepin’ on when your being pushed around (pushed around x3)
dont even know which way is up you just keep spinning down round down

every storm runs, runs out of rain
just like every dark night turns into day
every heartache will fade away
just like every storm runs, runs out of rain

so hold your head up and tell yourself that there’s something more
and walk out that door
go find a new rose, don’t be affraid of the thorns
cause we all have thorns
just put your feet up to the edge, put you face in the wind
and when you fall back down keep on rememberin’

every storm runs, runs out of rain
just like every dark night turns into day
every heartache will fade away
just like every storm runs runs out of rain

it’s gonna run out of pain
it’s gonna run out of sting
it’s gonna leave you alone
it’s gonna set you free, set you free..

every storm runs, runs out of rain
just like every dark night turns into day
every heartache will fade away
just like every storm runs, runs out of rain
it’s gonna set you free
it’s gonna run out of pain
and set you free..


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