Monday, May 4, 2015

The Good, The Bad, and The Sister.

I know the title says we're starting with the good, but let's not do that. 
Let's start with crappy and end with happy.
Just because we can.

The Bad:
After 14 years with this amazing chocolate lab in our lives, we had to put her down last Wednesday. She lived a long, hopefully mostly happy life, but it was time. And it was hard. Our animals are so much more than just pets. My dad says that dogs are the only thing that love us more than themselves and I agree. 100%. Well Jesus does too. Dogs and Jesus. Not that I'm comparing Jesus to dogs. Just the love. Oh goodness. You know what I mean.......

Anywho - I want to tell you just one cool story about our sweet Kaia and then we'll move onto the good. I promise.

When we moved into our previous previous home two years into married life, the first thing our elderly neighbors said was, "we hope you don't have any dogs. We hate dogs." Oops. Um about that....we happen to have a one year old chocolate lab who loves to run and chase things and occasionally a lot of the time bark at a passerby.

And then she wormed her way into their hearts in the endearing way that she loved on everyone. We would come home and find out they had been giving her treats and throwing a stick with her. We had an invisible fence that she never crossed because she was a wuss but they would come over to play with her.

Fast forward about seven years....

We came home one day and found out Murray was in the hospital. When Todd went to visit him a few days later, he kept trying to tell Todd something but he couldn't talk well after the stroke. He finally got it out.
"Kaia. My best friend.
Kaia. Best Friend."

Come to find out, Murray had a stroke in his back yard.
Kaia ran through the invisible fence (shocking herself) and stood over his body barking continuously until Helen came out to see what was wrong?

That's Love, people.
That's a dog for you.

She had occasional moments where I wanted to kill her like when she ate all my students papers, our remote control, and gobs of toilet paper....or when she made me chase her in the pouring down rain while I was nine months pregnant with Owen, but I wouldn't change a thing. 

She was our first baby and she is MISSED!

RIP sweet girl. You made life much more enjoyable. You will not be forgotten.

And now for the good?

We just finished our first day at St. Josephs. Day one out of 25 and it's good? Really?


We got over the mental hurdle of leaving the family. And believe me, it was a hurdle.

But we're here; we're adjusting, and Owen had a great first day. He ate all of his bites at every meal and warmed up to his therapists. His weight was good and we're already discussing all of our options for foods to introduce, etc. It is going to be hard work, but I am hopeful. And hope is good. I will try to update more after our big team meeting Thursday morning, but for now, here's a few things you can pray for if you get bored:

1. They're going to start challenging him towards the end of the week with more volume, textures, and new foods.

2. He has to have his g-tube replaced back to the correct size for his stoma. I'm scared. He's scared. Pray this goes smoothly.

3. Weight Gain. Weight Gain. Weight Gain. They will weigh him three times a week. This is serious business here. We need to see progress on FOOD so we can slow down on the g-tube. This is my NUMBER ONE goal for being here. I want to see this boy gain weight from FOOD. Not formula.

And now for the even better news?
Aunt Sarah Ellen is here. All the way from TX.
And we love us some Aunt Sarah Ellen. She's great with Owen and she makes me laugh. What more could you want? 

Oh wait.......
And then there's this too:

While you soak up that cuteness, I'm off to bed.

Bring it, Day Two.


  1. Yay! Been checking for an update! Sounds like an awesome first day...praying for an awesome week.

  2. day one, done. Glad you've started, the end will come quicker now.

  3. I am so proud of your hard work to finish the semester, final exam(s) and all, while also tackling each challenge of the prep to leave for NJ. I hadn't expected to be there when Kaia left us, but it was a privilege to give her some final unconditional love, just as she always loved on all of us. I miss her! The prep to organize, pack, review, pack, and prepare physically was huge, but even more challenging was the emotional hurdles of departure. I was a mess when you left, but I know God has GREAT plans for Owen in NJ and that all our prayers are being answered through the skills and programs provided. I'm not excited to hear of the tube replacement, but I know you are in a good location and God will provide skills and compassion to all around you and Owen. Bring it on NJ.....