This is the day my baby at 7 months old took a horrible fall from a grocery cart, and God revealed her horrible secret. CANCER!
My buddy, Ethan (this is him trying on Britt's glasses...she's blind), had his 14th birthday yesterday while I was at St. Jude with Ivee doctors trying to come up with solutions to save her from another surgery. So many times we as a family have had to put normal celebrations on the back burner to help Ivee live, or get better. Ethan knows we will celebrate he and dad's special days when we get to Houston this weekend, but I'm sure he was still bummed. That is, until he got home
sty!) had scrapped some money together and bought him a small cake, a donut, and popsicles. She barely was able to shove 14 candles on that tiny cake and quickly sang to him so he could blow out the candles. That's when I knew that we have done something right in the middle of all our struggles and my absence in the last seven years. It's hard enough to meet all your kids needs when your home life is "normal", but it is a true struggle when you have a child with constant medical problems, hospitalizations and constant traveling. But when I see my kids, my marriage, and this journey, I am reminded of what I learned seven years ago...G.I.F.T...God is Faithful and True.
This girl and I got home last night from our whirlwind trip to Memphis.
MedicallyThe pulmonologist spoke to her partner/boss and he said Ivee would benefit from a CPAP machine. So tomorrow that will be delivered along with a suction machine, to help me get the secretions out of her throat in the morning or when she's sick. The oxygen will go through the face piece of the CPAP machine. We will have to return to Memphis in three weeks to see if it's helping. *sigh
I am grateful I have to make the trip, however. I feel like I should sing that song ..."I would walk 500 hundred miles, and I would walk 500 more".... Luckily, I get to drive.
My prayer is that all this machinery and treatments will get Ivee to a healthy state of not needing a tracheostomy by a long shot. The concern with a child whose been what she's been through, especially the brain surgeries and double radiation is nacrosis (death of brain tissue and vascular breakdown). If Ivee's lungs don't work well, the oxygen doesn't get to her brain. Not enough oxygen leads to nacrosis, and she's already at risk.
She's had a few headaches this past month and scans are not until February. I'm not concerned about any tumor being present, but I will be a little anxious to see how the contrast dye looks showing the health of the brain and tissues.
And let me say how incredibly thankful I am for friends and family who go with me the 14 hour drive (round trip) to these appointments. If They didn't, I would have been alone when I've received some very bad news at times. And this time, my friend, Cathy, had to be a mule. I still can't lift really heavy things, and Ivee's medical suitcase is heavy. Cathy had to load and unload the car, and get Ivee in and out. She has made the trip many times, even short notice. I think she's been as much as my dad, who helps me out often..
Ivee's face sums it up. Life is hectic here trying to prepare for a Christmas trip to Emmett, praying the mechanic finishes fixing my car tomorrow, packing up all we need to take, finding a home in Houston while I'm there, coming home to pack up the house, and then finding the cheapest and easiest way to get it all to Houston, while getting Brittney through her graduation finals, finding Ethan a new school, and finding a whole new network of doctors to take care of all of Ivee's issues. (We will continue her cancer protocols at St. Jude. That will not change,
It's ...craycray! That's all I can say. BUT...I know where my strength comes from. It comes from The Lord....and it comes from you all! Your encouragement is tremendous. I think you have no idea what your prayers have done for this family, what those little words you post mean to us. I don't know if you know this, but I don't tell people I'm praying for them, if I'm not. I feel like a liar if I say that, and don't follow through. So, if I say I am praying for you, I am! I believe all of you are the same! I've seen the evidence of it in my life. Thank you friends!