Today marks one week since John had his surgery. The surgery went really well and only took 3 1/2 hours. Only time will tell if the surgery did what we were hoping it would do but we have no doubts that God has had his hand in this whole journey. Over and over we see how he worked out every little detail. The staff at St. Mary’s did an exceptional job with John. He stayed there 4 days and 3 nights. I can’t believe you can cut out a portion of a man’s back, replace it and have him standing next to his bed (twice) within 12 hours. The next 2 days were a struggle of pain management but, again, they did an amazing job helping John through it. I stayed at the hospital for the first 3 days (mostly due to the snow and ice storm) and by Thursday night, when I finally made it home to sleep, I figured I had slept 6 of 65 hours. Friday, they sent John home which was an agonizing hour drive home over the ice crusted, snow covered and bumpy roads. The first night was difficult because, as much as we tried, we couldn't find a comfortable place for John to rest. Praise God, the next day my mom was able to locate a hospital bed through St. Vincent De Paul for free. A neighbor was in our driveway shoveling when my mom called and said she could pick it up but needed help. Our neighbor jumped in his truck, met my mom and helped haul the bed into our living room! That morning was such an encouragement to John. He has been able to sleep and rest comfortably since! He still needs his walker to get around but he is getting faster and faster with it. Just 2 days ago his movements were very labored, even with the walker, so I am excited to see him “cruising” around the house. We have also been blessed, beyond what we could have ever imagined, with meals and financial gifts to help us through this time! I have been awed at the generosity of others. God has used each and every one of your encouraging words, meals, groceries, gift cards and gifts to remind us of his love for us! Thank you! Please keep us in your prayers as I know the road is still long. I apologize that this is the first ‘official’ update I have given since the surgery but communication at the hospital was difficult and I feel like I have been sleeping as much as John since we got home. Nonetheless, I knew people were praying for us because we felt such peace and such comfort through it all. There were a couple times that I felt so alone at the hospital (Because of the snow, I couldn't get home and no one could get to us) but God used a text message or an email to remind me that there were so many people praying for us and an overwhelming peace came over me. Thanks again for praying for us.