May, 2017

First off, let me assure you that you haven’t missed any posts to the Herald. This one will be for both April and May. By the time we remembered that the Herald was due it was already half way through April, so we took the easy way out and decided to just wait ‘til May.

Did I tell you that I am taking ASL lessons?  I truly can’t remember if I told you. I know the alphabet in sign language now and I am able to sign some simple sentences. The retired Dr. who is teaching me said I am doing very well. I also am enjoying getting to know Dr. Ogden. He is a very talented man. I love to watch him sign the music at church. He has someone else do the signing for the message.

Marilyn and I were very surprised to hear at our LIFE group on Wednesday evening that our pastor had spoken of Marilyn and her book, Roses In December, in his sermon  on Sunday. We were at the first service and didn’t hear a thing. Our LIFE group leader listened to the second service, and he heard it. We asked the pastor what happened and he readily admitted that he had missed that point in his notes in the first service so decided to make sure that he inserted it in the second message, which he did.

Ann n Marilyn n Glen

 

We were thrilled to find out that a long-time friend was going to sing for our church at a special concert. We were excited to see Ann Downing from Nashville, Tennessee. Marilyn used to travel with her with Florence Littauer and CLASS which Marilyn used to help teach.

 

 

Marilyn’s brother just returned from Africa where he spent one month serving the ministers and missionaries there. Walt first served in Africa years ago. In recent years he has continued to visit to counsel and teach.

Our Easter week ended beautifully. We went to Matt’s house for the Easter evening meal. All the kids came and we had a good time.

Easter 2017 at Matts

 

We started May with a visit from Lauren Littauer Briggs. We had a wonderful time showing her some of the local attractions.

Glen Marilyn Lauren

We visited the Hallmark Visitor Center and next day The National Museum of Toys and Miniatures. We took Lauren to a production of “Smoke on the Mountain.” It’s a family musical with lots of old hymns and songs. Marilyn is so happy to see someone from Redlands again. We both miss California, but we know that God wants us here for right now.

Much love,

 

Glen and Marilyn Heavilin

 

 

 

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March, 2017

Dear Ones,

Marilyn has made it successfully through cataract surgery of both eyes. She is now receiving two kinds of eye drops, two times each day. Just three more weeks and she can have her eyeglass prescription updated so that she can wear her glasses again. She is looking forward to that time.

Barbara Wolock

 

God has blessed us with wonderful doctors who truly care about us. When the eye doctor realized $950 was more than we could afford to pay for a corrective lens to take care of the astigmatism in her left eye, the doctor offered to write off her fee for that surgery if we could pay the hospital fee of about $345. We knew that we could pay that amount and so we were able to strike an agreement with her.

lindsey-heidrickGod also blessed us with a caring speech therapy doctor who conducted Marilyn’s barium swallow test. Marilyn was very concerned because she did not have a very caring doctor for a barium swallow test that she had many years ago. Marilyn had been concerned that she would not be able to swallow the various forms of barium. The doctor had heard of Marilyn’s concern and she took the time to taste all of the food ahead of time so that she could tell Marilyn all about it. Marilyn was able to complete the test and swallow all of the food. When Marilyn was recommended for swallowing therapy, she was again blessed with the same doctor for the therapy sessions!

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We were able to go to the Remodel and Garden show in Kansas City where we got to hear Frank Fritz of the American Pickers television program. Frank was very entertaining and very nice to us.

 

We also started attending a Life group from our church. We truly enjoy it. Glen already knew one man in the group. (That’s pretty good from a church of about 2500.)

Please pray for everyone here. Nate has walking pneumonia and Matt was really under the weather tonight. Deb’s mom had a TIA this week. Please keep all of us in prayer. Also pray for Marilyn’s brother who is in Africa for the next several weeks.

Marilyn has done very well this past month and she has had no falls for the past several weeks. We appreciate your prayers on her behalf.

Marilyn has also started to take American Sign Language lessons from a man in our Sunday school class. He is willing to drive here every week and give Marilyn lessons. He is a little younger than Marilyn, a retired doctor, and he has Parkinson’s. He has been doing ASL for quite some time and he is the music interpreter for ASL at our church. Marilyn feels that she should keep busy and keep learning all that she can for God’s glory.

Much love to you all,

Glen and Marilyn Heavilin

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February, 2017

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We had a busy month. On January 19 we went to the United States figure skating championships and truly enjoyed them. We got to see the junior pairs free skate. There were twelve couples that got to skate in the finals and we got to watch.

 

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Glen had asked for a special seating where Marilyn could watch from the wheelchair. It was a perfect spot where we could see the judges and we had a clear view to see the couples receive their trophies. We are including some pictures from the event so that you can see what we saw.

 

 

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWe had some snow during the month of January and we took a picture of that too. We have not forgotten what snow looks like although we have had a very light winter the last couple of years with less than 5 inches of snow each year.

 

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My brother, Walt, was here the first week of January this year. He was able to stay for the whole week, five days, and we enjoyed visiting with him.

 

I saw some special answers to prayer this past month. We were given an excellent doctor for a swallow test. I was quite concerned about it since I knew I would have to drink Barium, but the Dr. was so good that I was able to drink the barium without any problems. Our neurologist had written the swallow Dr. a detailed note that even included that Glen cut my meat for me. The swallow Dr. related that she started the day with an older couple and ended the day with us. She acted as though her whole day was framed by my arrival.

I also had the cataract surgery for my right eye on January 24. That turned out so well that I am almost looking forward to the surgery on my left eye on February 21. Please remember to pray for me that the left eye surgery will go as well as the right eye did on January 24.

1966 summer

 

Also, please remember to pray for us on February 10 which is the date that Nathan died in 1983. It is hard to imagine that he would be past 50 years old now. I must admit that I often wonder what he would look like at the age of 50+. Our tradition is to have a balloon launch for our three boys: Nathan, Ethan and Jimmy.

 

Ethan at nursery door

Jimmey in holder 2

 

Ethan                                                Jimmy

 

 

It has been nearly 2 weeks since I have fallen. I try very hard to avoid those falls, but I do seem to keep falling.

Thank you so much for your prayers on my behalf, and phone calls, letters and emails to me. They are such a comfort to me to think that my friends are remembering me and actually thinking of me.

Love you,

Glen and Marilyn Heavilin

 

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JANUARY, 2017

HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE! I realized, after I wrote it that I did not wish you A MERRY CHRISTMAS in the previous newsletter. I trust you will have one anyway!

Please keep those who won’t have a Merry Christmas in your prayers. Remember there are some of the people who won’t have a Merry Christmas for various reasons. Though it may be difficult for us, we do need to realize that there are people who won’t have a Merry Christmas and it is our responsibility to remember them in prayer.

Although I have fallen three times in the past two weeks, we plan and to have a wonderful Christmas, and I know we will.

It has been extremely cold here, but we have had no snow except for a few flurries last week, but it didn’t stay on the ground. It was below freezing this morning and we are told by the weathermen that we should expect even lower temperatures sometime this week.

Shortly after I wrote this it snowed.

We had about three inches on our balcony. The snowplows and salt trucks were out in full force. By the time we needed to drive to church the roads were passable. Thank goodness for parking garages that are surrounded by our building! It is really nice not to have to scrape ice off of the car windows each morning. Also new to us is the idea of getting to the car wash to get the salt off of the car.

Many of you have commented about how I sign our Christmas letter to each of you: May your Christmas be gentle and your new year peaceful. I got that greeting from The Compassionate Friends many years ago. Several years ago I was given two Christmas cups. On one it showed a beautiful yellow bird and the inside read “Let heaven and nature sing” and on the other cup it showed a lovely red cardinal (which happened to be my mother’s favorite bird) and on the inside it read:

“May peace be more than a season”. That is what I wish for you this year: “May peace be more than a season”. My wish for all of you this year is that peace will live not for just a season but all of the year through.

Please note that we have officially changed our address.

Our emails are now changed:

Marilyn Heavilin        mwheavilin@gmail.com

Glen Heavilin             gwheavilin@gmail.com

We have new business cards printed with our correct Kansas address and our correct e-mail already printed on them.

Please let us know if you would like to have one.

We love you,

Glen and Marilyn Heavilin 

May peace be more than just a season.

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Sunrise, December 22, 2016

 

 

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November, 2016

DeetraFordMarilyn talked with her Neurologist at her regular appointment and the doctor told her that from her professional guesstimation she would gather that Marilyn has about two years to live. That is fine with Marilyn. She figures she will have passed 80 and she will make it to her 60th anniversary. The doctors said that she feels her guesstimation will stand unless Marilyn has a heart attack or a stroke during that time. So that is our goal now. . .to take any chance that we have to side step a heart attack or a stroke. We are blessed to have doctors who take a personal interest in our health.

 

We’ve had a very busy month. Our friends from Memphis came to visit us on October 6. They still haven’t decided where they will live on when they move here. Of course we are hoping that they choose our apartment complex. It would be wonderful to have them close by.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALowell and Shirley Linden, from Redlands, visited on October 21 through the 24th. The Clarks, also from Redlands, came the following weekend. We found a new place to visit when the Clarks were here, the Museum of Toys and Miniatures. Ken really enjoyed it and I think Harriett did too. Of course Marilyn had to buy a small train while she was in the gift shop. The train set will be displayed at Christmas.

We have claimed residency in Kansas now, so we were able to vote early, since Kansas has a provision for early voters. This is not an absentee ballot, but we actually went to a voting place and were able to cast our ballots a couple of weeks early. I trust all of you will vote as well. Please do not be discouraged by the current situation. God will know if you voted or not, even if it seems that your vote may be canceled out by others who are opposing your vote. I feel that we must take every opportunity to voice our opinion as Christians even if it does seem that our vote may be canceled out.

Our church is hosting Kirk Cameron in November and also the Collingsworth family will be here on November 6th. We are looking forward to hearing them. Our pastor is preaching a series on Neighboring which causes us to ask the question, “just who are our neighbors?” I have decided that all who come in contact with us are our neighbors. I am currently reading and listening to David Jeremiah and James MacDonald. I am certain they would say that everyone we come in contact with is our neighbor. That places quite a responsibility on me. Do they know I am a Christian? Do they know that I believe in a Heaven and Hell? Do they think I am willing that they go to Hell? No I am not! But do they know that? I must ask all of you, my readers, does it make a difference when people meet you? This is really something to think about.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWhen we celebrated our 58th wedding anniversary on October 25, the assistant manager surprised us by telling us that she had planned and wanted to pay for the dessert for the entire table. There were eight of us at the table! Obviously she is my neighbor and we had made an impression on her.

KristinHumphreysWe also received a congratulatory anniversary card from our primary care doctor who wanted to tell us what an honor it was to serve such a nice couple and to know a couple who had been married this long and who enjoyed it. Apparently she is my neighbor as well and we had made an impression on her. Praise God!

 

Thank you for praying for us.

LY, Glen and Marilyn Heavilin

 

 

 

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OCTOBER, 2016

Dear ones,

Well we made it to Indianapolis and back in fairly good shape. We saw lots of people while we were there. Glen said I did very well.

BHSclassof56in2016

We spent Friday, September 30th with the Brownsburg High School class of 1956. Of the original 56 members there were 16 who made it to the 60th reunion. They came from as far as Boston and Denver. We had a meal together at noon followed by the class roll call. Then in the evening we had a pizza party at a classmate’s home.

Siblings w spouses

Our first day in Brownsburg was Wednesday September 28. That day we saw Glen’s brother George and his wife Cathy, and Glen’s sister Jane and her husband Bill.

On Thursday we saw Marilyn’s brother Walt. We shared a meal at the local Longhorn Steakhouse. On Saturday, we saw our good friends Jack and Carol. We got together at McAlister’s Deli. Sunday we visited Bethesda Baptist Church where we formerly attended. Since there was a Cracker Barrel nearby, we went there for dinner. You can tell we always enjoy eating.

We got home the evening of Tuesday, October 5 and had a visit with friends from Memphis on Thursday. We had met Wally and Vicki at Morro Bay when we parked next to them for several years back when we wintered at Morro Bay, California. We often went out to dinner with them while we stayed in Morro Bay for a couple of months each year. We also met them in Memphis to celebrate our anniversary since it is also Vicki’s birthday. Wally and Vicki may join us here in the apartments. It is great to think of them living in the same town as we do. Please pray about this for them. I am certain they would appreciate your prayers.

We were able to get handicapped accessible rooms for the whole trip. Marilyn only managed to fall once in the motel room in Brownsburg. She bruised her hand pretty bad, but she didn’t have to go to the hospital for which we were very grateful.

October and November are the months that we visit the doctors so perhaps Marilyn will have more answers for us next month. She has formed the habit of writing down her questions for the doctors so that she remembers to ask them what she needs to know.

Thanks for your prayers,

Glen and Marilyn

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September, 2016

Dear ones,

The Rav4On August 17, we received the word that we had sold the RV. After we thanked the Lord that we had sold it, we started looking for a new car on August 20. The utmost test was that Marilyn could get into it by herself. The only one that passed the test was the Scion IM. We received delivery on the Scion on August 26 with just 13 miles on it. WE LOVE IT! I know you will be surprised that The Scion iMit is a red car!! And did I mention that WE LOVE IT! We were told that since it was built by Toyota, it will be incorporated into the Corolla line by next year. So essentially, we bought another Toyota. Our RAV4 has served us well for the past 16 years with 200,000 miles plus registered on it. We trust the Scion will do as well by us as the RAV4 did. We are very happy with it so far.

 

Brownsburg Bulldog

 

We plan to drive our new car to Indianapolis on September 26 to attend Glen’s 60th high school reunion in Brownsburg Indiana, and we plan to drive on September 27, arriving in Brownsburg on the 27th. We will be staying in Brownsburg until October 2, at which time we will drive back home on October 3, arriving in Kansas City area by October 4.

 

 

Wally and VickiWe plan to entertain the Swanson’s, Wally and Vicki on the fifth or sixth of October. They are friends from Memphis Tennessee and they may be moving to our apartment complex around the first of the year. Please be praying about this. We would love to have them as neighbors.

 

I have only fallen twice since June 27. We think that is a major accomplishment. I did embarrass myself since I fell at Matt’s house. At least I had two handsome grandsons to help me get up. That was one benefit of the fall. Another benefit was that I am off Warfarin so I did not bruise nearly as badly as I might have were I taking the medicine. Another benefit was that I did not need to go to the hospital. I did heal up nicely with just a minimal amount of bruising. Much of it has faded away now, just a week later. That is a very good thing.

On August 28, we were able to hear the Liberty quartet. They were missing one member so there were only three. They were really good. On September 18, our Sunday school class is having a taco bar after church. And some time in between when we get back from Indianapolis and before the taco bar event, is Boomers and Builders, when we will all be singing the songs from the Sound of Music. That should be a lot of fun! Boomers and Builders is a new group and is aimed to include an enlarged age group.

It is encouraging to us to know that many are praying for us. Thank you for all of your concern. We do appreciate the prayers, phone calls, and letters that we have received over the past few months. Don’t be afraid of us. Marilyn will not be content until she hears from all of you.

We love you,

Glen and Marilyn

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July – August 2016

This has been a very busy month. We enjoyed the fourth of July by having a meal with Matt and family. We then had reserved seats on our balcony for the largest display of fireworks in this county. It was very impressive.

Veterans

 

On June 29, we had a patriotic concert at our church where all of the men who served in the military were honored. The World War II veterans were brought to the front to share their names and tell which branch of the service they were in. That was very impressive.

 

 

Lauren n Marilyn

 

Toward the end of June, Lauren Briggs visited Glen and me and also my brother Walt visited. It had been about five weeks since he came last. I am so glad he is close enough that he will come fairly often. He is hoping that he can visit at least once more before the end of the year. Lauren promised that she would be back as well.

 

 

On July 17 we took our dear friend Sunok Pai to our church for a concert in which the choir and orchestra performed. We could tell by the smile on her face that she really enjoyed the concert.

Next Tuesday will mark six weeks without a fall. What a day of rejoicing that will be. I have felt fairly well too. I do have lots of questions for Dr. Ford in September, but I have felt very well.

All of the physical therapy has ended, and I am doing my required exercises faithfully. I am using my Rollator every day, and I feel that it is helping me avoid falls. The heart doctor and my primary care doctor have taken me off of the Warfarin. That is a relief! So far, I have adjusted very well to the change. I am taking a small dose of aspirin each day.

 

Calebs new car

 

Kate and Caleb both have new cars. Kate has a Honda HRV and Caleb has a new Mini Cooper. It is almost a turquoise color with racing stripes painted on the hood. It looks very classy. Kate’s Honda HRV is a very pretty dark blue color.

 

 

Matt birthday blowout

 

 

On July 16  Matt, Deb, Kate, and Caleb came after church that evening to have dessert with us for Matt’s birthday. I ordered a Dairy Queen ice cream cake. And we will all enjoyed that.

 

 

 

Glen & Marilyn

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June 2016

 

Walt n MarilynMarilyn’s brother, Walt, was able to visit from Tuesday morning to Friday night this past week. Marilyn was delighted to see him since she had not seen him since before Karen died in February 2016. They had a good visit and were able to say some things face-to-face. That really helped. We were able to visit quite a few restaurants and the Mahaffie Stage Coach Stop. Walt really enjoys Western memorabilia, so he especially enjoyed the old part of the Stage Coach Stop, which included a lot of Kansas history.

Marilyn included a visit to the ER the first evening Walt was here because she took a fall in the parking lot of the steakhouse they had visited. The visit to the ER was fairly short but included an x-ray of her left knee and a Cat-scan of her head. Fortunately they found a brain! But the rest of the visit to the ER just involved several bruises and a sore right hand. The fall had not resulted in any broken bones which was a definite answer to prayer. Her physical therapy was cut short by one day because of the fall, but that was all. Marilyn survived a couple of weeks of physical therapy, going every day for walking and hand therapy. That ended a record of three weeks. Glen is trying so hard to take good care of Marilyn, and it is very frustrating that she fell in spite of his great care to avoid such falls.

Glen had a routine endoscopy yesterday morning which resulted in the doctor saying that he expected him to pass with flying colors. The final results should come within five days but the doctor did not expect any problems. Matt and Deb were able to drive us to the hospital and stay with us during the procedure. It is so nice to be close to Matt and Deb.

Marilyn feels she has made much progress since she wrote you last in May. It is now June and she is still kicking!

Thank you for all of your prayers and for your notes personally and on Facebook. She does appreciate your personal greetings and special thoughts. She is feeling pretty good and it has been nearly 2 weeks without a fall! She is going for a month this time, maybe more!

Thank you for your encouragement and your prayer. Marilyn’s prayer is “Lord, please keep me vertical.”

Because of Him,

Glen and Marilyn Heavilin

 

Walt n Marilyn n Glen

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MAY, 2016

This is the most unusual Heavilin Herald we have ever written. You all know that Marilyn has not been well for some time. She has suffered from loss of balance which has resulted in numerous falls. When we took our apartment in Kansas we found a new primary care doctor who is committed to helping us find  the cause. She connected us with a neurologist whom we have been seeing for a couple of years. We have had lots of tests and visits every six months. Always searching for the elusive cause.

Marilyn saw her Neurologist last Wednesday and she gave her a new, more complete diagnosis. After considering all of the observed symptoms, she said Marilyn has Multiple System Atrophy-P. It is often referred to as MSA-P. The P stands for Parkinsonian symptoms. MSA-P is a fatal degenerative neurological condition of the brain. It is a rare condition affecting 15,000 to 50,000 adults in the United States. Life expectancy is 5 to 10 years.  Since we have seen symptoms for some time already, we’re not sure when the count should begin. Our best guess is that Marilyn may have one to six years to live.

Apparently the Neurologist thinks Marilyn will soon be facing some major lifestyle decisions. She encouraged Glen and Marilyn to talk about those decisions now. We have been revising our Advance Healthcare Directives to make sure they reflect our current positions. This afternoon we met with the Notary Public and so we have our new versions ready to distribute to the doctors and hospitals.

MSA affects the autonomic functions controlled by the brain. That’s things such as balance, heart rate, body temperature, body movement, bladder control, speech, and swallowing. One of the major problems Marilyn will face is eating. Basically, MSA means that parts of the brain will stop working and the brain won’t tell the throat muscles how to swallow.

Marilyn thinks she is ready to go. But she states “I like it here because it is all I know. I do hope I can make it until I am 80. Just one and a half years to go! My birthday is November 4, 1937”.

In a nutshell that appears to be the future we are looking at.

Meanwhile in our day by day activities, Marilyn has had the cast removed from her left wrist and started physical therapy for the hand on Tuesday, May 3. She is basically having physical therapy every day for the next five weeks since she is having walking therapy on Monday Wednesday and Friday and hand therapy on Tuesday and Thursday. She is very busy and quite tired.

Marilyn reports, “I really thought my left hand would be able to do more than it can. I am kind of disappointed. It didn’t seem that it was that stiff. But so be it!”

Two weeks ago we took the motor home to Carthage, Missouri. It was placed on a consignment lot. Please pray that it will sell quickly.

Marilyn has had some special joys along the way. We got to have lunch with a young wife who, with her husband, is leading our Live Together workshop group. We’re meeting together for five weeks and we are working to find out what God wants us to do for the next several months or years. Amber is a very capable young woman and we had a wonderful time together. It is a very challenging class and we’re meeting very interesting people in the class. We meet on Wednesday evenings.

Mellyns flowers 2

 

Marilyn was pleasantly surprised this morning when she received a phone call telling her that she had a basket of flowers delivered to the office. Once Glen brought the flowers up to the apartment, Marilyn was especially pleased to find that the flowers came from Mellyn for Mother’s Day. The main color is purple which is one of Marilyn’s favorite colors. It is a mixture of roses, green plants and a variety of different kinds of flowers. They are lovely!

 

Mostly, this month is filled with physical therapy appointments.

Thank you so much for continuing to pray for us and thinking of us often.

LY,

Glen and Marilyn

 

 

 

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