Don Bowen Update: 2008-11-03

What a week. I have to say it. UNBELIEVABLE! (my favorite word according to my friends) I turned 50 last Wednesday and took all my girls out for dinner to one of our favorite places, Panache. Eileen and I still love it, but I’m not sure about the girls.

On Thursday Todd and Lisa Garber took both us and the Monahans out to dinner for my birthday and Mike’s (a kid at 5 years younger!).

We went to a chinese all you can eat place called Mings. It was good, but the best part was when we left. The owner said to Wendy, “Who your favorite country singer? You look like country singer fan” ๐Ÿ™‚ The funny part was Wendy being offended and that it wasn’t me or Todd who did the offending! Not that we ever do that.

On Saturday my friend Kevin Elder asked me to come and speak to his 4th and 5th grade class at all three church services. He was teaching on the story of the 10 lepers where only one came back to Jesus and said thanks.

I got to share my story and how thankful I was for God’s goodness to me and how I thought that thankfulness was key for God to give us peace, which is the only thing that sustains you when you face something scary like what I’m going through. I never get tired of bragging about what God has done for me. I still marvel that He would use someone like me to encourage and inspire others. What a privilege.

I really must be losing it because though there were lots of “signs” I got the shock of my life on Saturday night. Eileen surprised me for my 50th birthday. All kinds of weird things happened, but none of them said, “Hey dummy! They’re trying to surprise you!”

After I spoke at church I told Eileen we should go to dinner at Applebee’s. Mike called her cell and asked to speak to me Weird (though I forgot my phone at home, causing them to improvise. He said, “Why don’t you come by our church and watch the chinese playing badminton, then maybe we’ll go to dinner with you.” Also weird, but almost immediately I thought, “I should go home and get my own badminton raquet in case I get to play.” (don’t laugh, I used to be a serious player) When we got to the church’s gym, here is what happened:

Here is part two:

As you can see, they got me good. You can hear Kelly say, “I hate it when he cries.” It’s so nice when your kids tell you how to easily annoy them ๐Ÿ™‚ It is one of the top 10 days in my life. I told a friend tonight it was top five, but then realized that either my wedding or the birth of one of my kids would have to be less special and I upped it to 10 ๐Ÿ™‚

All five of my siblings, my parents, Eileen’s six siblings, my in-laws and so many friends had come to surprise me. Even my good friends Andy, Kevin and Tamara flew up from Austin. I got to watch videos about me made by my daughters, my Austin friends and my dad. I will never forget them. Yes, of course I’m going to make sure they are posted online ๐Ÿ™‚

Eileen made sure they had all my favorite food – twizzlers, barbecue chips, manwich (ok, more when I was a kid), cheesecake and cherry pie. Each table had green and yellow balloons.

It was just like it will be in heaven. Even Eileen can’t believe she pulled it off. Not spotting something does concern me. Am I slipping? No, it must be that she is getting more devious.

Sunday several family members and my Austin friends accompanied us to church. I knew how committed my friend Andy is to our friendship when he showed up (‘proving’ our commitment is a running joke between us). It wasn’t too bad, was it, Andy?ย  During his message Cal said, “Unbelievable!” and I heard Tamara laugh out loud. Afterwards we enjoyed having everyone over for birthday party leftovers. Poor Tamara is now 2 for 2 in not making it back home on time. Her flight, and Kevin’s, was canceled again. So, for the second time we made the best of it and went to dinner and a movie, though this time we didn’t have to find Amy’s wallet.

I think it was just the excitement from Saturday night, but my head was hurting bad most of the day on Suday. It really had me worried, but has been much better today.

Hair update: Eileen pointed out that I hadn’t shaved and when I said I was going to she said, “Can you just look like a normal human being for a while?” I’m still trying not to think too deeply about what that means. When I saw how scraggly it looked tonight I did shave it off again. I hope she doesn’t notice.

“Now on his way to Jerusalem, Jesus traveled along the border between Samaria and Galilee. As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy met him. They stood at a distance and called out in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us!”

When he saw them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed.

One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked himโ€”and he was a Samaritan.

Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” Then he said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”

(Luke 17:11-19)

Pray my labs are good on Wednesday so I can stay on schedule. Doing so for 18 more weeks will be tough, but nothing compared to the miracle we’re praying for, right? Somehow the choir is always scheduled to sing right after my treatment. I like a good challenge, but I’m beginning to think Michele (our choir director) does this on purpose ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m just kidding, Michele!

I need a miracle, God specializes in them, pray BIG!

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2 Responses to “Don Bowen Update: 2008-11-03”

  1. minoti Says:

    Happy Birthday Don. Looks like you had a blast. Take care

  2. Eloisa Says:

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