Monday, September 26, 2011

Talmage buddy

This right here represents one of my truest joys while being sick. My Talmage man comes over every day and cuddles up with me under our soft blanket. He has the routine down and will go get the golden oreos, our favs, and we sit on the couch watching "toons" and eating "treats".

I am going to have to steal this little guy from Jodi a lot after I am back to work. I treasure my cuddle times with T-man and chatting with his mommy. They have definitely made this situation fun. I think T-man will always be my buddy after getting to spend a couple of months with me on the couch! Seriously, I don't know how anybody could resist or say no to this face!

Sunday, September 25, 2011


Hayden had been complaining that his mouth hurt. He was cutting several molars so I thought it was just cutting new teeth pain. Finally, I looked in his mouth and it looked like his tooth was going to come out through the upper gum. I called the dentist and they had me come right in.

Thanks to Jodi, she was able to re-arrange plans to go get Hayden at school and take us to the dentist. Within a few minutes of x-rays, they ran panoramic x-rays and said that this tooth had grown an abnormal root and it was indeed pushing on the permanent tooth.
My poor boy was immediately put under "I don't care" meds and they went in and cut the tooth out. Poor boy. It didn't take long but he was pretty miserable once home. But, now, boy is he excited to show that tooth to anyone that walks into the house.


Hayden received his Bear... and a gold arrow... and 6 silver arrows.

When Hayden sets his mind to something, he is unstoppable! He had earned his bear a month ago but I wanted him to receive it when I could see him get his award. I am so glad I did. He worked hard and I love watching him realize the fruits of his hard work.Hayden has turned into quite the clown when on a stage or in public situations. He is one funny boy and we sure love him and are so proud of him!
Hayden's best buddy, Joseph, received his bear at the same time. These guys are such great friends.
Hayden was lucky to have so much support.... Grandma Joyce
Of course, I wouldn't have missed this. Isn't this part the mom's award, too? Actually, the bear was such a family and extended family award. So many people helped Hayden in different areas... I am so thankful!
Of course, Aunt Suzi helped with some requirements... especially hiking... one I did not want to do.
Thomas spent a lot of time with Hayden but some of their favorites were building bird houses, the pinewood derby car, the insect and bug museum, identifying snakes and so many more....
Grandma Julie took Hayden and picked him up from scouts for the last several months. She also helped with photography, wildlife, birds and speaking to a wildlife conservationist.
Hayden is so lucky to have so many people that love and support him. Not only are they there for the awards but also help him to earn them. We feel so loved. Most importantly, so proud of my boy!

Lisa's stay

While Lisa was here, she tried getting me out of the house as much as possible, even though the outings only lasted a very few minutes sometimes....She definitely cheered me up. We made "to do" lists of things that I could do while sitting on the couch. We made ghosts out of candy bars and streamers with googly eyes for Hayden's class.

We came up with cute Christmas ideas.... We talked and laughed and cried.

Most of all, she took Hayden and played with him. She played games, colored, went to the movies, took him for ice cream, baked cookies, spoiled each child (Hayden, Brooklyn, Brigham and Talmage) with a special outing. She made life feel "as normal" as possible during her week with us. She brought lots of smiles with her.

Word cannot express our gratitude. Thanks, Lisa. We didn't even realize how much we needed you. You brought sunshine and laughter with you. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

I needed you!

Cupcakes, 7 Layer Dip and Priesthood Blessings.

I was headed into another outpatient surgery and was given a priesthood blessing. In this blessing, I was told to become friends and really show appreciation to the surgeons. As I did this, I would become so close to them that I would be like family and they would grow to love me and do anything for me.

With Lisa being here, she thought we would be best off to make 7 Layer Mexican dip and chips and Jodi made boxes of her gourmet cupcakes.

If I could adequately express the looks you get sitting in a surgeons office with all this food... it was priceless and brought so much joy, even though I was headed in for surgery.

As I handed the platter of dip and chips and cupcakes, I thanked the office staff and nurses for their kindness, the surgeon just looked at us. We were put in a room and the surgeon walked in asking what was going on. We expressed our gratitude. Thomas thanked him for not only helping to fix what is wrong but for also figuring out the problems but being understanding and reassuring to me. The surgeon walked out with tears in his eyes. He truly felt the gratitude that we felt for him.

I was prepped for the procedure that was about to occur. Thomas then gave the surgeon 3 boxes of cupcakes with three thank you cards for each of the surgeons to take home. After lots of thanks, each surgeon came in to thank us.

At one point, I looked up.... all three surgeons were in the room, eating chips/dip and cupcakes. I had indeed become more like family. As the surgeon spoke of this and upcoming surgeries that he was planning on doing, it felt as if the entire room was filled with the Holy Ghost. The surgeon said, no, if we handle things this way, the following will occur. Then, the surgeons began to come up with different solutions/surgeries that may work.

It was the most heartwarming few moments realizing that they were being edified and inspired by the Holy Ghost as to how to go forward with my treatment....I had tears.... joyful and thankful tears.

And, although, the surgery and all the needles hurt. The pain was drowned out by the feelings of gratitude for the miracle that I had just watched unfold on my behalf. The love I felt from a loving Heavenly Father was indescribable. I felt the love of a surgeon who was intently watching and carefully trying to identify the abnormalities within my body. Yes, I may be struggling and trying to fight these infections and problems inside my body.... yet, I have been surrounded by the Lord's love and he has put incredible people in place to take care of me. The love I have felt for me has been so very humbling.


I received a call from my cousin, Lisa, on a Thursday evening. She asked me how life was going. How the home front was holding up in spite of me having more outpatient surgeries and procedures. I replied that we were handling life fine. (Lisa had moved from Prescott to Denver back in November of last year.) She asked if I needed her to fly to come and help us out. I told her we were fine and managing due to lots of family, friends and ward members all helping out.

The next phone call I received was one saying, "Have Thomas pick me up at the Gateway airport at 10:10am on Sunday. I will return the following Sunday. Have Thomas make a list of anything that I can help out with." I hung up the phone and cried tears of joy. I was in awe that people, including Lisa, cared so much about me.

You see, Lisa has always been the "big sister" to me. She lived with us when I was young, took care of Jake, JD and Jodi at times, let me live with her when I came home from a mission. She was there. I was having such a rough time and was trying so hard not to.... yet, it is hard to be down this long.

I felt relief that Lisa was coming. I felt loved. I felt very loved. And, oh how I was a hero in Hayden's eyes since Lisa was coming.... oh how he loves her.

Labor Day

We celebrated Labor Day with a BBQ and swim party at Jake & Rosie's house. I sure love spending time with Jake, Josh, Suzi and so many others that were at the party.

Hayden loves every minute he can spend with his cousins... and swimming. It was a GREAT day for him.


Hayden's annual cardiologist visit this month went so well. It is such a relief to hear Dr. Jedeikian say, "Boy, you are doing so great..... no restrictions for you. Go! Run! Play! Be a boy! Have a great time."

My boy is so brave.... ekg's, echo's, sonograms... what a trouper!

I wish I could adequately describe the love I have for Hayden's doctors. There are no words for the wonderful doctors that kept Hayden alive. There are no words to describe the feelings when I hear "Dr. J" tell me how wonderful everything looks.

I feel grateful. So very grateful. I look at Hayden. He has no idea the relief that I feel, the peace that floods my heart. All he knows is.... we are headed to Toys R Us. He has done everything that the doctors or I asked of him. I smile for that day and the next several with so much gratitude that my Father in Heaven is allowing me more time with my son.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

My Rocks

When the going gets tough and life is rocky, I believe that is when you really see the good in people. I am absolutely amazed at the sheer goodness of the people in our lives. We have been so blessed. When life is busy and "on schedule", I tend to focus on what needs to be done, checking the next thing off my list. But, when I am forced to slow down, I realize that I am surrounded by some incredible people.

I could spend all day and night listing all the wonderful and kind deeds that have been performed for our family. I am in awe. I am so very grateful. There are so many wonderful and caring people in my life for which I feel so blessed.

When I am sick, for the most part, it feels like the rest of the world keeps going on, but for these three women and two wonderful men, their worlds have stopped and changed, just like mine, so that they can help us.

Jodi- I am so grateful for an amazing sister. Every morning, Jodi comes over to my house, diet coke in hand and her and Talmage take care of me. She sits and talks to me until she has to pick up kids from school. What a blessing she is. She has made this time of bed rest bearable. We talk, we try to find answers about life, we talk about our children and our hopes and dreams for them. We discuss how we can be better at our church callings, be better moms and how we can come closer to our Savior. I will ALWAYS cherish this time I have had with her. I am so grateful that my Father in Heaven allowed her to be my sister and best friend. He knew that we would need each other. I used to take care of her and feel responsible for her. I am not sure when those roles switched but she is the amazing one. She is one of our Heavenly Father's most precious daughters. I learn so much from her and her example. She focuses on the truly important things in life. I am grateful that I am one of her priorities. Words cannot express my love for her!

Joyce-My mother-in-law is a beautiful woman inside and out. I love her spirit. I love talking with her. She is quiet. She is so humble. She gives credit to everyone around her and always talks of how the Savior or others raised such a wonderful man for me to marry. She serves selflessly. She takes me to doctors appointments and picks up Hayden from school, gives him treats and makes sure we are okay. I love her. My heart cannot express how much she means to me. She raised a wonderful son and I am so lucky he is my husband. I hope to teach Hayden some of the wonderful traits that she taught Thomas. Yesterday, she came over with lunch. As we sat and talked of enduring trials and seeing the Lord's hand in our lives, I looked at her differently than I ever had before. I saw someone that loved me like a daughter, not just a daughter-in-law. It was a special moment for me.

Julie-She has sacrificed every day. She has absolutely lived this trial with Thomas and I. She spent many nights in the hospital with me, and rotated many nights here with Thomas. She has gotten to know the doctors so well and communicates with them so effectively. She has held me when I have sobbed tears of hopelessness and tried to console my deepest aches. She has helped by making meals, shuttling me and Hayden, fed dogs and anything and everything else that could be needed. Most importantly, she quieted my fears, she helped me find the strength to move forward and she cared for me. I watch her. I admire her. I see in her some of the qualities that my mom had. In quiet moments when I am certain that I can't do it one more moment, she will say something that my mom would tell me. It is in those moments, I feel as though I have a mom here on this earth and one in heaven. I think my mom has spoken to me through Julie. They both love me and when Julie is around, not only do I feel her love and strength but I feel as if she also carries the love for me that my mom had and still does. Words cannot express my gratitude.

My Dad-I am so grateful for his kindness. For the days he spent in the hospital demanding answers, paying for extra care and treatment, finding specialists to help me and loving me. He has sacrificed by completely covering my duties and responsibilities at work without complaint or grumbling. He has just loved me and cared for me through this. I can tell the concern and care in his voice when he answers the phone, "oh, my Jer Jer". I am taken back to my childhood and the days that my dad could just fix anything and everything. He was my hero. Through this trial, I have had moments of feeling completely helpless. I will always remember the moment he entered my hospital room. I was so scared. I felt as if my life was slipping from me. As he entered the room, I was taken back to the days when I believed he could fix anything. As I reached out for him, I felt safe. My Dad was in the room and no one could hurt me. I relaxed and let him handle the doctors. I cannot express how much I love my dad and am so very, very grateful that I am his daughter.

Thomas-there are no words. I love my husband. I cherish him. I am so grateful that he is my rock through this and every other trial we face. I love my life with him by my side. He holds me, he cares for me. He rubs my feet at night after he has tried to do Hayden's homework, laundry, run errands, do dishes, clean, pay bills, take care of the dogs, IEP meetings, doctor appointments, works and organizes everything that needs to take place each day. When needed, he lays his hands on my head and gives me a priesthood blessing. He loves our Savior. He is the best dad. He loves me. I love Thomas so very much. I am so grateful for his undying love, support and care of me. I am so grateful that when this life is over and my time on earth has ended that we will still be able to be together forever. The best decision I ever made was to marry him. Oh, how thankful I am for having my husband to be beside me. He certainly can make me smile even in the hardest situations.

My heart is filled with gratitude to these and all the other wonderful people that have and do serve and care for me every day. My Heavenly Father sure has surrounded me in the arms of his love by surrounding me with earthly family that loves me.