Wednesday, March 25, 2009
March 26th is also the day that B rushed me into the hospital because my seizures were so frequent. I had almost 20 in about a ten hour time frame. Early the next morning, I was diagnosed with Epilepsy. So, March 26th & 27th hold a "special" (if you can call it that) place in our hearts.
You can read more about it here:
So, tomorrow is basically the one year anniversary of starting to get answers, though we still don't have a cure! Wear purple tomorrow and shave your heads if you really want to have fun! Just kidding!
Thank you for all of your love and prayers!!!
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Just curious as to how each of you would define a miracle?
It can be one word.
It can be a paragraph.
It can be scripture.
It can be a story.
Whatever you want to share.
Don't be shy.
Of the 50+ people that have been to the blog, only one has responded. Then, I read a blog today with this post about Miracles!!!
It links to this post which also discusses Miracles.
What is a miracle to you?
Since Tx won't let me drive, it's hard to run basic errands. I like a good bargain and so if I see that something is on sale at one store vs. another, it takes great effort to get to each store. Plus, I need to pick up prescriptions quite often. Other times you just want to get out of the house!!! B & Mom run me on their share of errands (i.e., doc appts). So, I hate to constantly ask them for all of the other little trips around town, too (though I know they would do it & they do do it with willing & loving hearts).
When I was first unable to drive, my next door neighbor took me to the grocery store every week. She also taught me about The Grocery Game which has saved us so much money since I've not been able to work for over a year and Ben's time at work was so limited last year sitting next to me in the hospital for so many months. If you decide to sign up for the grocery game, let me know so that I can give you my e-mail as a referral because I can get credit & free months!!!
Then, my next door neighbor started working and was unable to take me to the store anymore. Our next door neighbor from our previous house then offered. She is a physician and so I know it was such a sacrifice from her schedule, but she still worked to make it happen each week.
Then, a friend from church offered to take me each week. Her name is K. She is so patient with me and will go sit at the Starbuck's at the front of the store and just wait if I'm taking too long. There are times that I have a bunch of seizures and so the trip to the store takes a long time...she never hurries me. She has been such a precious blessing! She also gets as excited about coupons as I do...
I love our time together and our talks that we get to have in the car! However, I think her favorite time is when she gets to the house to pick me up and she cuddles with Hank!!!
Sunday, March 22, 2009
The chemotherapy was not too bad, considering some of his past treatments. His blood counts looked good today, which allows us to go to Grandma and Grandpa's for the weekend. Connor's appetite is coming back after the chemo. We are all faring well, considering. In the midst of this storm, I am trying to praise Him for all our blessings. I know that praising Him will bring my heart's focus on Him, instead of my troubles.
Counting my blessings, I realize that we have been so blessed to have so many pray for and support Connor. Our school (Prestonwood Christian Academy) had several special prayer times for Connor and our church (Prestonwood) had prayer time for him during Sunday School. It was so beautiful hearing all of those children pray for Connor. I know it had to be like a beautiful aroma to Him. So precious. Not only has our church, school and friends rallied around us, but so has Tait's company (Northwestern Mutual) . People from across the US have helped us so much over the past 4 years. Just recently, several people flew in to speak to people at Tait's office to re-energize them and lend their support during this tough time for our family. Thanks, Keith, Ira, Chris, John and Laura. Many of our friends have shared that they have passed along Connor's prayer requests and now even strangers are praying for us. We feel your prayers. Thanks for pounding on the doors of heaven for us!
Specific prayer requests:
1. Pray this chemo will work to kill the cancer cells. There is part of the tumor pushing out of Connor's abdomen. Please pray that this evidence shrinks to nothing. It would be evidence that God is answering our prayers.
2. Pray that Connor stays strong thru this new round of treatments
3. Pray for guidance. No charted path. God must make one for us.
4. Pray we bless others along the way.
"What If His People Prayed" by Casting Crowns (some of the lyrics)
What if the armies of the Lord
Picked up and dusted off their swords
Vowed to set the captives free
And not let Satan have one more
What if the church, for heaven's sake
Finally stepped up to the plate
Took a stand upon God's promise
And stormed hell's rusty gates
What if His people prayed
And all who bare His name
Would humbly seek His face
And Turn from their own way
Saturday, March 14, 2009
I have not updated in some time and with Joy's wonderful writing ability, many times I'm even awestruck on how she expresses the current status of Connor and the fight that we're going through with his cancer. We have been fighting cancer with Connor almost 46 months, longer than WWII. And when I hear people ask where do you get the fight, where does the energy come from, how much longer, how does Connor have the stamina, we simply have one answer and that is our faith in God through this fiery journey that we've been on.
With visits to Dallas, Houston, Boston, New York and now Ft. Worth, with the primary tumor being Neuroblastoma and now a completely new tumor, we still rest in the Lord. At the end of the day we will fight until there is no more fight. The only way we are getting through dark nights, thoughts that we don't want in our brain, questions we don't want to have to answer, doctors we do not want to have to see is your prayers, your encouragement, and knowing that our Lord is giving us strength.
Early on in this fight I quoted Psalms 23 saying we are going through the valley of darkness, to our right is dark, to our left is dark. Our old life, our old "normal" is behind us and the new normal ahead of us is black. The only way we're getting through this is with your fingerprints all over us pushing us through this. Today as the father of an eight year old son with two dragons inside of him trying to devour him I say thank you. With 46 months of fighting this, hundreds of visits to the doctor, thousands of pills taken, gallons of chemo infused, and countless surgeries, Connor has never complained.My question to you today is what do you have to complain about? I'm asking you to be grateful, to embrace life's challenges, to say a prayer for an eight year old boy who is fighting cancer, and also I say thank you for your incredible faithfulness in lifting up our family.
Sunday, March 8, 2009
Hawaii has been wonderful. It's been full of fun, laughter, rejuvination and re-focus. We are so grateful that Connor's time here was event-free, especially since the doctors recommended that we bring some pain medication. Thank God, we have not needed any. More proof of God's provision. PLEASE CONTINUE TO PRAY THAT GOD WOULD PROTECT CONNOR FROM SERIOUS HARM FROM THE CANCER. PRAY FOR CONNOR'S STRENGTH AND ENDURANCE AS HE WILL START HIS NEW BATTLE. PROTECT HIS BODY FROM THE CHEMO'S HARMFUL SIDE EFFECTS. PRAY CONNOR WILL RESPOND TO THIS NEW THERAPY. I hope God proves these nay-sayers wrong.
Thankfully, we should be starting Connor's treatment next week. We will meet with doctors in Ft. Worth Monday afternoon to sign consent forms and do any test we need to. On Tuesday, we will complete the tests and hopefully get started with the treatment. This first trial that he is doing is a combination of 2 chemotherapy drugs. We were looking at doing something that the doctors could just prescribe without being on a trial, but as the doctors pointed out, he can always do that. Trials, on the other hand, are not always open and available. So, we will continue on this trial until it ceases to work or it becomes too toxic for him. Then, we may have some new trials come available or a compassionate use drug may be ready at that time. AS YOU CAN SEE, WE STILL NEED MANY PRAYERS FOR DIRECTION. We are praying that God will put walls to the left and right and behind us so that the way before us is crystal clear. We want him to clear a path for us, as he has done over the past 4 years.
PLEASE PRAY FOR TAIT AND MYSELF AS WE GEAR UP FOR ANOTHER BATTLE. I do confess that Satan has been attacking us with fearful thoughts. He is trying to find our weakness. As we struggle against this battle in our mind, we continue to turn to God for strength and He has not let us down. As I continue to get weaker and weaker, I feel His presence growing stronger and stronger. Satan may feel like he is gaining ground with us, but he has not and will not win this war. Christ has already won! "In this world, you will have trouble, but, fear not, for I have overcome the world."
At this point, we are lying Connor at His feet. God is on His throne, He is in control (we are definitely not), and He will never leave our side.
I search for love, when the night came,
And it closed in, I was alone,
But you found me, where I was hiding,
And now I'll never ever be the same,
It was the sweetest voice,
That called my name saying
You're not alone, For I am here,
Let me wipe away your every fear,
My love I've never left your side,
I have seen you through the darkest night,
And I'm the one who's loved you all your life,
All of your life
You cry your self to sleep, cause the hurt is real,
And the pain cuts deep, all hope seems lost,
With heartache your closest friend,
And everyone else long gone,
You've had to face the music on your own,
But there is a sweeter song that calls you home saying
You're not alone, For I am here,
Let me wipe away your every tear,
My love I've never left your side,
I have seen you through the darkest night,
And I'm the one who's loved you all your life,
All your life
Faithful and true, Forever,
Oh my love will carry you
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
While at lunch with Mom, I received a message from my dear friend A's little girl. "A" sang in our wedding and has been such a precious friend through the years. She lives in Houston and each time I've been in the hospital, she has been there by my side. Each time with a picture colored for me from at least her oldest, A, and sometimes her other little girl, S. She is such a steadfast friend and woman after Christ. She is always there to offer prayer and encouragement. I hope to be like her as a Mom some day, too!
So, back to the message. I got a message from her little girl asking me to call her back that she had "really exciting news to tell me." She said that it was so exciting and kept going on and on about how exciting it was and that I needed to call her back. I convinced myself that either her Mom was pregnant again or they were somehow going to be moving to Dallas.
When she answered, she told me that this morning, she was laying in bed talking to her Mommy and decided this was the day that she was going to accept Jesus in her heart!! I can't see to keep typing because I am crying. That's what I was doing as she was telling me...I kept trying to tell her that they were happy tears. I have known this sweet little girl since the day she was born (I even got to talk to her in her Mommy's belly) and now she is a New creation in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17).
They are having a little party tonight to celebrate that Jesus is now her Savior and she gets to spend eternity with Him! How cool!! We talked about the fact that today is March 4th, 2009, and it's a very special day and a day she'll never forget...I still remember sitting by the lake at Sky Ranch and asking Jesus into my heart. Of the many things I've forgotten, that is one memory I hold dear....
These are some pics over the years with Miss A.
Also, in the pic, her sister (S), her Mom, her brother (J), my friend (Dr. S), and my Mom.
Hangin' in the hospital with Miss A!!
Another time they came to visit (her on the far left).
Her Dad was able to come for this visit, too!
Mom and I were in Houston for doc visits & so I got to spend the big day with them.
Didn't even get to spend the day with my hubby, but I was with Miss A!!
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
I spent the week before my daughter's June wedding running last-minute trips to the caterer, florist, tuxedo shop, and the church about forty miles away.
As happy as I was that Patsy was marrying a good Christian young man, I felt laden with responsibilities as I watched my budget dwindle . . .So many details, so many bills, and so little time.
My son Jack was away at college, but he said he would be there to walk his younger sister down the aisle, taking the place of his dad who had died a few years before. He teased Patsy, saying he'd wanted to give her away since she was about three years old!
To save money, I gathered blossoms from several friends who had large magnolia trees. Their luscious, creamy-white blooms and slick green leaves would make beautiful arrangements against the rich dark wood inside the church.
After the rehearsal dinner the night before the wedding, we banked the podium area and choir loft with magnolias. As we left just before midnight, I felt tired but satisfied this would be the best wedding any bride had ever had! The music, the ceremony, the reception - and especially the flowers - would be remembered for years.
The big day arrived - the busiest day of my life - and while her bridesmaids helped Patsy to dress, her fiancé Tim walked with me to the sanctuary to do a final check. When we opened the door and felt a rush of hot air, I almost fainted; and then I saw them - all the beautiful white flowers were black. Funeral black. An electrical storm during the night had knocked out the air conditioning system, and on that hot summer day, the flowers had wilted and died.
I panicked, knowing I didn't have time to drive back to our hometown, gather more flowers, and return in time for the wedding.
Tim turned to me. "Edna, can you get more flowers? I'll throw away these dead ones and put fresh flowers in these arrangements."
I mumbled, "Sure," as he be-bopped down the hall to put on his cuff links.
Alone in the large sanctuary, I looked up at the dark wooden beams in the arched ceiling.
"Lord," I prayed, "please help me. I don't know anyone in this town. Help me find someone willing to give me flowers - in a hurry!"
I scurried out praying for four things: the blessing of white magnolias, courage to find them in an unfamiliar yard, safety from any dog that may bite my leg, and a nice person who would not get out a shotgun when I asked to cut his tree to shreds.
As I left the church, I saw magnolia trees in the distance. I approached a house...No dog in sight. I knocked on the door and an older man answered. So far so good..... No shotgun.
When I stated my plea the man beamed, "I'd be happy to!"
He climbed a stepladder and cut large boughs and handed them down to me. Minutes later, as I lifted the last armload into my car trunk, I said, "Sir, you've made the mother of a bride happy today."
"No, Ma'am," he said. "You
don't understand what's happening here."
"What?" I asked.
"You see, my wife of sixty-seven years died on Monday, on Tuesday I received friends at the funeral home, and on Wednesday . . .. He paused. I saw tears welling up in his eyes. "On Wednesday I buried her."
He! looked away. "On Thursday most of my out-of-town relatives went back home, and on Friday - yesterday - my children left."
"This morning, he continued, I was sitting in my den crying out loud.. I miss her so much. For the last sixteen years, as her health got worse, she needed me. But now nobody needs me. This morning I cried, Who needs an eighty-six-year-old wore-out man? Nobody! I began to cry louder. Nobody needs me!"
"About that time, you knocked, and said, 'Sir, I need you'."
I stood with my mouth open.
He asked, "Are you an angel? The way the light shone around your head into my dark living room..."
I assured him I was no angel. He smiled. "Do you know what I was thinking when I handed you those magnolias?"
"No. I decided I'm needed. My flowers are needed. Why, I might have a flower ministry! I could give them to everyone! Some caskets at the funeral home have no flowers. People need flowers at times like that and I have lots of them. They're all over the backyard! I can give them to hospitals, churches - all sorts of places. You know what I'm going to do? I'm going to serve the Lord until the day He calls me home!"
I drove back to the church, filled with wonder. On Patsy's wedding day, if anyone had asked me to encourage someone who was hurting, I would have said, "Forget it!" It's my only daughter's wedding, for goodness' sake! There is no way I can minister to anyone today. But God found a way. Through dead flowers.
"Life is not the way
it's supposed to be.
It's the way it is.
The way you cope with it
is what makes the difference."
If you have missed knowing me,
you have missed nothing.
If you have missed some of my emails,
you may have missed a laugh.
But, if you have missed knowing my LORD
and SAVIOR, JESUS CHRIST,
you have missed everything in the world.
May God's Blessings
be upon You.
THIS IS SO TRUE,
IS SO UPLIFTING
TO EACH OF US..
This story is too beautiful not to send...
Monday, March 2, 2009
Also, do you think the pics are awful? Do you like them? Is there a favorite? A least favorite? Tell me...help me...I can't make up my mind and you haven't commented yet. Let me know what you think.
password: fox (all lowercase)