Friday, June 17, 2011

Fathers... What can you say?

I have to start off by saying I've been blessed. Yes, in reference to my brain tumor but I'm not talking about that (I know for once). I am blessed to have an incredible husband, amazing children, and outstanding family. Since this Sunday is Father's Day, I want to take a moment and brag about the father of my children. Not only is he my best friend, but he's given me two of the best gifts I could ever receive (my boys)!

Darren is remarkable! Throughout this last year and a half, I've seen a new side to him. As I recovered through various stages, he has taken on more than his share of the load, learned new skills, and displayed beautiful grace and acceptance. Even when I was in ICU unable to communicate effectively, walk, or swallow, he still looked at me with eyes of love. Who would do that? We always wish that those we love will step up when time comes and we cannot guarantee it, but its amazing when it happens, when your hope is fulfilled. I know this hasn't been easy for him, but I am thankful to walk this path with him. What an incredible man of strength, love, care, responsibility, and grace! I am in awe of that!

This past week, he had a horrible job, one that I do not envy at all. In fact, I was glad he got to do it. Last week, I tried my hand at independence. I signed Zach up for a week long soccer camp in the morning and I didn't arrange for any help with the boys. My plan was to take both Zach & Kadin to this camp and while Zach played, I would wander around with Kadin in the stroller. Well for me. the idea of this was scary. I had a lot of what if''s whirling around my brain. For example: what if Zach ran off? how would I catch him? what if he got hurt? how would I wrangle both boys? what if he acted up? would he listen? would it be blatantly obvious I was different? would I manage? the list goes on and on. I almost scared myself out of not going, but I knew that it would be good for me and for Zach. So, we did it. Someone from my family showed up everyday just to encourage and support Zach but, I am sure that I would have been fine if I had been alone. Zach had a blast and really liked his coach. He was a typical three year old boy. He listened and paid attention when it was convenient for him. He ran, kicked, dribbled, and had a great time. We survived! Kadin did too! He just hung out in his stroller and was happy as long as I remembered his snack ;0) So we survived soccer camp and then at lunch time on Friday, Zach had an accident. He was running to look out a low kitchen window to see what his Dad was doing when he tripped on his own feet and smacked his forehead on the window sill. Blood began pouring from his forehead where it had just split open. I tried to get Darren's attention as he watered the back yard and applied pressure to stop the bleeding. Our Pediatrician warned us when Zach was little that head wounds bleed a lot. Kadin began crying. Darren came into chaos, he didn't hear my warnings. We decided to rush him to the doctors office, which has a satellite office down the road. They were closed for lunch, so Darren took him to First Care, right next door to the doctor's office. They said it would need stitches or super glue. He called me for conference. I thought that super glue wouldn't hold up for active Zach and I opted for stitches, but I asked that our Pediatricians office do it because we've had back experiences with Nurse Practitioners doing them. They went to the other office and were seen soon after arrival because I had called and warned them. Darren says this is what happened. The Nurse brought them back and Darren said "I'm not sure if this needs stitches or if I'm a worried parent." The Nurse peeled back to band aid and then quickly left to get the Doctor. He didn't want to do super glue either so stitches it was. Here comes the fun (yeah right)! They had to strap Zach down to do the stitches and he wriggled out due to the intensity of his anger & fear. From what I understand, Darren will not be taking either one of our children for anymore stitches. It traumatized them both. Three stitches later and a mega Popsicle later Zach returned home. We thought that was bad enough but Darren had to take him in Wednesday to get the stitches out. We thought that would be easy, but we were wrong. Zach remembered the previous experience and fought again. This time Darren opted to hold him rather than have him strapped to a board again. Lets just say it was equally traumatic and Zach took a bit to warm back up to Daddy again. I've had t0 change the band aid the past few days and after hesitation and much convincing, we've been successful. That has been hard to watch him go through. What a strong & courageous big boy he's been. Hopefully, that is his first and only set of stitches. Hey, I got my first set at 31 with my brain surgery and Darren got his first real ones at 30 with his leg surgery. Hoping anyways. What a remarkable Daddy! I love him so! Thank you Darren for doing that so I could be the comforter Mom afterward.

Happy Father's Day to my Dad too. Thanks for all the laughable moments during our pedicure dates ;0) I love them!


P.s. Congrats Michael for being TUBE FREE! I'm so happy for you. Here's to chocolate malts!


  1. Hi Jessica..thank you for creating this blog. I do not have a brain tumor, but i am friends who someone who does (who also has a blog) thats how i connected to yours.. :)(my brain egore)
    Anyway I just felt compelled to leave a little note.. I see (and read) many of your trials and tribulations..happy when you overcome and conquer some of your problems. I can't imagine dealing with all of that, plus raising two active boys! I have four boys (two of which are twins) I know how much is required.. a LOT! :)
    I also wanted to share something else with you.. this is very weird for me..but if you have time, you should really look into
    This is a wonderful website that answers a lot of questions about my religion. Many people have incorrect information about us.. i dont know how i would get thru the day without my Heavenly Father's help and the gospel. I know it would help you and your family out a great deal. This is the first time ive ever done anything like this.. i just felt inspired to share. Thanks, Marilyn

  2. Marilyn -

    Thank you for your thoughts and courage in responding.  You are correct, dealing with my recovery from my brain tumor and having two very active boys is a challenge! I especially struggle with how my deficits (voice/speaking & walking/movement) affect how I interact with my boys.  I definitely have been blessed by God to have an amazing husband, children & family.

    I understand the courage it took to share your faith impressions with me.  Thank you for your concern.  You are correct, in that with God on my side, this situation is much easier to experience.  As I have mentioned in my description of why I started the blog (top of each page) and my introduction, I give God the glory first and foremost in what He's done in my life.  I hope to convey this message without question.  I Believe strongly in God, His Son - Jesus Christ & the Holy Spirit and I'm grateful for the sacrifice Christ made on that cross for each of us.  I've drawn courage & strength from God's Holy Word too.  Some of my favorite verses are: 

    Philippians 4:13 - I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

    Jeremiah 29:11 -" For I know the plans I have for you " declares the Lord " plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future."

    Deuteronomy 31:6 - "So be strong and courageous!  Do not be afraid and do not panic in front of them.  For the Lord your God will personally go before you.  He will neither fail you, or abandon you."

    I worship God as a Born Again Christian now more than ever, fully knowing that my tumor had many lessons associated with it.  Thank you  for your kind words.  I hope your friend is doing well despite her diagnosis and treatment.  I know she has a tough journey of her own and surrounding her with love, prayer, and friendship will be an awesome gift you can give to her.  Please feel free to explore my blog more in depth to read of all God's miracles He has blessed me with.

    Blessings, Jessica