Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Fun Never Ends

I went to the doctor yesterday for another follow up on my ankle.  Unfortunately it is just not healing correctly.  The screws that she put in during the original surgery caused a fracture.  The fracture is worse which has cause the bones to heal improperly.  It's hard to explain without showing an x-ray.  I have been in a great deal of pain and the swelling never really went down.  When she started to fiddle around with it yesterday I nearly cried it hurt so bad.  She gave me two options...surgery next Monday or surgery on the 16th.  Yep, I'm headed back in.  I chose the 16th. This time she is going to take out the screws so she can determine the level of damage.  Then she is probably going to put a metal plate in there instead to secure the bones.  Yikes!  Sadly this means yet another twelve weeks of no weight bearing on the right foot.  No driving.  No solo shopping trips.  No going downstairs to the laundry room.  (Oh wait, that's the one good part!)  

I am more than a little disappointed.  I'll admit it, I had a good cry.  I am really not looking forward to doing this again.  I was fairly certain that something wasn't right but I was praying that it wouldn't require another surgery to fix.  

The good news is that my mom is going to be able to come back and help out.  

I guess we're starting 2009 off with a bang after all!

Thursday, December 25, 2008


A few weeks ago we were asked by the oncology social worker if we would be willing to give an interview about our family for the paper.  We were a bit surprised.  We said we would, believing that they would be doing stories on several families for their Christmas edition.  The reporter came to our home, as well as a photographer, and we were able to talk about our favorite people in the whole world -- our kids.  :)  We assumed that it would be a small story, again thinking that there would be other families featured.  We asked the reporter where the story would be so we could look for it.  She told us it would be on the front page.  We were more than a little surprised.  

The article came out today and we are very happy with how it turned out.  You can read it here,

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

2008 Isn't Over Yet

Based on the events of the last few days, 2008 refuses to end without a fight.  On Friday night I slipped and fell....shocking, I know.  I tripped over Brent's shoe in the breezeway and thought I broke my shoulder.  A quick, (sort of) trip to urgent care and an x-ray later....my shoulder is sprained, bruised and very sore.  The doctor gave me a sling to wear.  I laughed out loud.  Seriously.  I don't think he was amused.  

When I fell I also hit the side of my face pretty hard.  However my shoulder pain was worse than my face pain and I didn't really focus on it.  I did think it was strange that I didn't end up with a black eye.  Then tonight when I was eating dinner I bit down and my molar on the bottom left broke.  Apparently I broke the tooth in the fall, hence the pain, and it didn't come loose until tonight.  There is a pretty good sized chunk missing.  Nice.  The nerve doesn't seem to be exposed so that's good.  Here's the thing.  I don't like going to the dentist.  Okay that's saying it mildly.  I am afraid of the dentist.  For real.  I haven't been in way too long.  I won't tell you how long.  Suffice it to say I don't have a dentist here.  However, my friend Teri sees a dentist whoseo office is literally right next door to our house.  I called his office tonight to see if they do after hours care.  They don't but they did leave an emergency number.  Turns out it was the doctor's  number and he actually answered the phone himself.  I was shocked!  He is the nicest guy and he will for sure be my dentist starting on Monday.  He gave me some good tips on how to get through the weekend with my broken tooth.  I will call Monday morning and walk over.  I think this is God's way of telling me I need to take better care of my teeth.  

As if all this weren't enough, Brent woke up today with a very swollen, red hand.  Yep, his infection is back.  Lovely.  He went to the doctor and got another antibiotic along with some more pain meds.  Hopefully we caught it early enough.  

How many more days in 2008?  I am so ready for it to be done!

Merry Christmas

I can hardly believe that Christmas is just a couple of days away. It has been a very long, very difficult year. I have really been trying to write a Christmas letter. I just can't seem to put into words all that has happened in 2008.

This has been one of the most difficult, exhausting, trying years of our lives. Tyler was diagnosed on Leap Day this year and it seems like our world has been upside down ever since. Brent has been in and out of the hospital. I fell and broke my ankles and had surgery. Tyler has been in and out of the hospital. We've had to juggle medical issues with trying to have a normal family life. Most days seem to run into one another and there are days that we just get through moment by moment.

And yet this has also been an incredible year. We have been incredibly blessed. We have met people we otherwise would never have known. Yes, it has been difficult. But Heavenly Father has helped us every step of the way. Yes, there are days when we cry and question why. But Heavenly Father always puts someone in our path that helps to lighten our load. Yes, it is heartbreaking to see our perfect little boy suffering and in pain. But Tyler has shown such great strength and power. His example has helped us get through this. 

If I have come to realize anything through all this it is that we are strong. Stronger than we ever realized. Stronger than we ever thought we'd have to be. We have a strong marriage. We have amazing children. We have loving parents and family members. We have been loved and cared for by friends and strangers. We have been helped and strengthened by so many. No matter how difficult things have been, there has always been someone there to ease the burden.

We know that Heavenly Father loves us and watches over our little family. We know that He has sent earthy angels to lift us and love us. We know that He will always be there to guide us. We have witnessed firsthand how when God closes a door, He opens a window. 

We know that we have been so richly blessed this past year. We have not been blessed in spite of our trials. Rather, we have been blessed because of them. We hope and pray that we can continue to see the blessings in our struggles.

May each of you have a very blessed Christmas. May we all remember the joy and peace that our Heavenly Father and our Savior bring.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Too Funny

I realize this might not be funny to anyone but me but since this is my blog, I am writing it down so I don't forget.  

Yesterday Brent & Emmalee went to Wendy's.  She got a kids meal and the prize was a Snoopy keychain thingy.  She didn't know who Snoopy was so she asked me several times what his name was.  Fast forward several hours to around 4:30 this morning.  (Emmalee was up all night but that's another story!)  Anyway, I finally got her back to bed and she was freaking out because she wanted her Snarky.  She kept crying and getting frustrated and wanting Snarky.  I could not figure out who on earth she was talking about and then she found it under the covers.  It was Snoopy.  I got the giggles like crazy.  Could be because it was really funny.  Could be because it was 4:30 in the morning and I hadn't slept yet.  Either way, I got a kick out of it!

Emmalee has been kind of a picky eater lately.  She hasn't wanted much of anything.  I try not to push her too much, I always figure she'll eat when she is really hungry.  The other night for dinner she wanted plain spaghetti noodles with butter so that's what I fixed.  She sat down to the table, took a bite and said, "mom, you're the best maker in town!"  

Friday, December 12, 2008

Christmas Music

Emmalee LOVES to sing.  She sings all the time.  She sings well known songs and songs she makes up.  She has been learning lots of Christmas songs at school.  Yesterday she came home singing Deck The Halls.  She only knows the first line and she sings it over and over and over and over again.  This is how it goes, according to Emma...

Deck the halls with pals of olley....la la la la la la la.

Hopefully she will learn the remaining verses soon.  

Emmalee's Christmas List

Emmalee just dictated her list to Santa for me.  She is a hoot!  Here's her list for her, Ty & Nate.

Dear Santa-
I want a princess doll with lots of stuff, an Elmo kitchen, my own 'puter, a new dolly, a new pen and skates.

Tyler wants to get a new holiday decoration, a new fan for the ceiling and a new toy like a bouncy ball that changes color.

Nathaniel wants a new picture of me & mommy, skates for when he's big and a new music toy like the music box we have at school.

Also, I want Tyler to be home for Christmas and not at the hosapole.


Thursday, December 11, 2008

Unexpected Gift

A few weeks ago I came across a group called the COLE Foundation.  I emailed them and shared Tyler's story and asked to be added to their prayer list.  They quickly obliged and we are so thankful to know that countless people, strangers, are praying for Tyler and our family.

Today in Tyler's Caringbridge guestbook there was this message...grab your tissues!!

I made a slideshow to wish everyone a Merry Christmas from the COLE Foundation. There are a select few children (19 to be exact, and it was very hard to chose from the 500+ children we have) who are featured in the video. However, I chose your child to be in the slideshow. Please go take a look at it.


Merry Christmas

COLE Foundation

Beth White 

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Life In The Fast Lane

That's how I feel lately.  We have been on overdrive for so many months.  I am really praying that we have a peaceful, HEALTHY Christmas.  

I am way behind on blogging.  I have so many new pictures of the kids including Nate's first birthday update from September, Emmalee's first day of pre-school and super cute pictures of Tyler.  Hopefuly I'll get them all posted before Christmas.  

My mom leaves today.  I'm not sure what I'll do without her here.  She has been such an incredible help over these last three months.  I simply can't imagine how we would have made it through without her.  It is going to be strange to wake up tomorrow morning knowing that she isn't here.  The kids are really going to miss her!!

We have yet to put our Christmas tree up.  I'm hoping to get it done before the end of the weekend.  I am never this late in decorating.  I think part of my delay is knowing that Tyler and Nate probably won't leave the tree alone and it will be a constant battle to keep them away from it.  Should be fun!  We learned a couple of years ago not to put any presents under the tree until Christmas eve.  I think we'll have to do that again this year.


Lots to report.....let's see.....Clinic went well today. Ty got Methotrexate, Vincristine and IVIG. He also started a cycle tonight which means 'roid rage. Hopefully it won't be too bad. His immunoglobulin counts are coming up which means the IVIG is doing its job. He is gaining weight, slowly but surely. Thankfully he is doing really well!

Thank you all so much for your continued love, support and prayers. We truly could not make it through without all of you!!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Brent Wednesday Update

Ty is doing well. He has clinic on Friday and starts a new cycle. It will be a long day with IVIG and such. Luckily we won't have to go back for three weeks. Gotta love that! Brent is still not doing great. The pain isn't much better. His hand and arm are still very red and swollen. Then last night when Emma and I were visiting him I noticed that his left arm was getting red and swollen also. We told the nurse and then I marked the redness with a pen. About an hour later the redness had grown outside the line quite a bit and his whole arm was hot. They took him down for an ultrasound of his left arm and discovered that he had a blood clot. Yikes! They are treating it with blood thinners and such. Not sure what caused that. They are obviously watching him very closely and still trying to determine what is causing the other infection. They don't have any blood culture results back, as far as I know. So, that's where we stand this morning. I will update more as I know. Thank you to everyone for your love and prayers for our whole family.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Brent Update

Brent had a horrible night. He is in agony. The pain is now all the way up his arm and into his shoulder and underarm. He wasn't able to sleep last night because of the pain. They took him down for x-rays this morning and he has been seen by several doctors including infectious diseases. He is in good hands as far as his care goes and I know they are working hard to figure out what is going on with him. I just hope and pray that they will get it under control soon, figure out what is happening and get him home! I'll update again as I know more.

Just Another Night in the ER

Yep, it's true.  Seems we can't go for more than a few weeks without a visit to Hotel Strong.  This time it isn't Tyler or me....it's Brent.  He has a nasty infection in his right hand and arm now.  His hand has been red and swollen for a couple of days.  By this afternoon the redness was streaking up his arm and his whole arm was hot.  Thankfully we got him to the ER before it got much worse.  They didn't give him any choice, he was admitted right away.  He'll likely have to be there for two or three days to get a good round of IV antibiotics going.  They think it is likely MRSA, given his history of that.  

Thank goodness my mom is still here.  I'm also thankful that I am now more mobile and able to drive.