Happy Halloween

I could not be more excited to see October go but not without going out with a bang. Despite this…

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I can’t wait for fun, pumpkins, candy and friends and hopefully some trick-or-treating. How appropriate for Halloween to be on a Thursday? Here’s a “throwback Thursday” to 6 years of Halloween fun in the Parker house!

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Here’s to this little pumpkin’s first Halloween…

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Wishing everyone a happy and safe Halloween!
XOXO,
Paige

An Update and A Million Thanks

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I have a lot I want to say today but first I want to update those of you that haven’t been following our story on social media.

Last Wednesday was surgery day. I was able to feed Dixie late the night before surgery and I went ahead and strapped her in her car seat for the night. Thankfully she slept until we arrived at the surgery center the next morning. An answered prayer. PreOp was the worst part. Lots of pushing and poking and a fussy hungry baby that didn’t understand what was going on.

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They finally gave her something to calm her down and we waited for her to be taken back to surgery.

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Surgery lasted about 45 minutes and we were able to be back in recovery with her as she was waking up from anesthesia. Such a blessing. We had been warned that she could be uncontrollable coming out of it but thankfully she wasn’t. She was very calm. She was very raspy and it was noticeably hard for her to cry due to the tube being down her throat.

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We were discharged and able to come home shortly thereafter. And the waiting began…

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God has showed himself to us in so many ways during this whole process and I feel like certain people have been placed in our lives to be there during this very moment. We are so lucky to have someone close to us that was able to find out that Dixie’s report had been read before the weekend. I called our surgeon around 11:00 am on Friday to get the news…

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**Let me pause for a minute to say how thankful I am to Cassie Bousson with Bousson Photography for capturing some great pictures pre surgery. I never knew how much I’d appreciate a non scarred chest picture of Dixie.**

I think I forgot to breathe during the phone call! The words benign were like a sweet sweet song.

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Like I said in a previous post, I have felt very guarded about what to share or not share on social media. Now that we are slowly putting this chapter behind us I feel more comfortable letting you into my head during this whole ordeal. Here are a few details that we had decided to keep between us that I am now sharing with you. From day 1 we knew this was a “tumor”. I hate that word. I hated hearing it, I hated saying it. So, I didn’t. We also knew that after the ultrasound showed increased vascularity that per the doctor “increased vascularity is often a sign of malignancy”. Another sentence I never wanted to utter. We knew why there was a sense of urgency. We knew what worse case scenario was and we were prepared for the next step in this nightmare of a journey. I knew that that phone call with the doctor was going to end much differently than it did.

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A million “thank you’s” could never be enough from me to each and every one of you. I truly believe that it is because of all of you lifting us and my sweet baby up in prayer that we are able to dance in the rain! We praised him through the storm, we had faith that he would prevail and he didn’t disappoint. I feel like my faith has been tested so much over the past month and I know God used this situation to remind me that he is in control. I questioned him, I praised him, I was mad at him, I praised him, I was disappointed in him, I praised him. I have never been on such an emotional, physical or spiritual roller coaster in my life. I am so glad to be “over the hump” so to speak. Dixie is still recovering from surgery. The first 4 days home were very hard for her, and us. She wouldn’t eat much, she slept all day and all night, she ran fever and she cried the most pitiful cry. I started to wonder if she would ever be my normal baby again. The doctor’s called it an “anesthesia hangover” from what I understand it is very hard for their little bodies to process all that it went through causing them to be out of it for a while. Then, this happened…

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She came back!! On day 5 post op she was back to her old self. We are still managing the pain but for the most part she is acting very much like Dixie, pre surgery. Yay!!! Tomorrow, we go to get the stitches removed and I am hoping it will all be downhill from there..
{warning: if you have a weak stomach, keep scrolling past the next 2 pictures}

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The tumor ended up being larger than we had thought so the incision is also larger than we had hoped. We used a plastic surgeon so I am anxious to see how beautifully it heals and will just be a distant memory.

At this point I know I sound like a broken record but I seriously cannot say thank you enough. We have been so overwhelmed by the outpouring of love showed to our family. With so much bad in this world it has been wonderful to see all the good out there. Maybe that was the point in all of this? We may never know what God’s plan was for this bump in the road but I know there was a reason. And for that, I am forever grateful.

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Last but not least, living in Memphis (the home of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital) I am painfully aware that not everyone’s phone call ends the way ours did. Did you know:
– 46 kids are diagnosed with cancer every day
– cancer is the leading cause of death by disease in children (more than AIDS, asthma, cystic fibrosis, and congenital anomalies combined)
-Two-thirds of children treated for childhood cancer will suffer long term effects from treatment including loss of hearing and sight, heart disease, learning disabilities, and infertility
– there are 12 major types of childhood cancer
– childhood cancer is different than adult cancer and responds differently to treatment
– less than 4% of the National Cancer Institute’s budget is directed toward childhood cancers

Those statistics shake me to my core. Thank God my child was not called to be one of the 46 on October 18th. But there are 46 children and families EVERYday that deserve just as much if not more love, support and prayers that have been shown to my family.

You can donate to St. Jude here.

XOXO,
Paige

Waiting for Wednesday

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9

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To say things have been crazy busy and a tad bit overwhelming since my last post would be an understatement. The mother in me has felt very guarded about what to share or not share on a social media platform and still very reserved about putting our story out there. With that being said, the positive part of sharing this chapter in our lives with all of you is the abundance of love, support and prayers we have felt and experienced over the past 3 weeks. So… I’ll start where I left off:

Since my last post we have had 3 doctor’s appointments/weight checks and examinations of the nodule. We have met with another pediatric surgeon who confirmed to us that his recommendation would also be to have the mass removed and tested sooner, rather than later.

Incase you missed it and for those of you who don’t follow me on social media, at our first weight check/examination the doctor’s decided to move the surgery up a week to this Wednesday, October 16th.

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As I stated in my previous post, the doctor’s are not treating us as an emergency but still with a sense of urgency. Because our biggest risk factor on Wednesday is the anesthesia, we still wanted to wait until Dixie met what the doctor’s like to call the “Rule of 10’s” 10 weeks, 10 pounds and 10 grams of hemoglobin. Tomorrow D will hit the 11 week mark. At our appointment with the surgeon today, she weighed in at a whopping 10 lbs. 10 oz. and the doctor’s are confident that her hemoglobin is fine. Yay!!

These last few weeks have been very emotionally draining. I keep coming back to the saying “An idle mind is the devil’s playground.” We’ve seen countless waiting rooms and doctors and still walk out with a lot of unknowns and “it could be scenarios” I’ve really found myself diving more into scripture everyday. 1 John 5:14-15 says “And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him.” I truly believe God not only hears my prayers and pleas but he has heard your prayers too. I can’t thank each and everyone of you enough for not only the prayers, but the meals, the help with the boys, the cards etc. I assure you not one thing has gone unnoticed and we are humbled by the kindness of not only our friends but also that of strangers. I realize that we are all fighting our own battles each and everyday and the fact that so many of you have added us to your prayer lists is so heartwarming. I am forever grateful.

I ask that you continue to pray for us this week. I do have a few specific prayer requests:

Although I know it is common procedure and it will be just fine, the thought of my itty bitty baby having a tube down her throat makes me sick to my stomach. For some reason since the explanation of the procedure, this is one part I just can’t get out of my head . If you could pray for me to shake that image and know that it’s just what they do and not harp on it so much, I would greatly appreciate it.

Dixie will be NPO starting at midnight tomorrow night. She is used to having a bottle when she wakes up every morning. I ask that you pray for us as we try to soothe her until surgery time without her being able to understand why she is hungry and we cannot feed her. I often joke that she is an emotional eater. 🙂 but in all seriousness, she is very soothed by her bottle and I pray that her pacifier will suffice until after the surgery.

Please continue to pray for her surgeon and surgery team. Pray the surgery goes quick and smooth. We are only anticipating about a 20 minute surgery.

Pray that Dixie wakes up from anesthesia okay and is soothed by the precious nurses in recovery until they allow us to see her.

Please pray that she is in minimal pain and that we all easily adapt to new ways of picking her up and holding her.

Above all else, please pray that the next time you hear from me it is with good results from the pathologist and we can move past this part in her and our lives.

I was talking with a friend the other day about how I was more worried about the surgery than the results and how I really hoped that I don’t just have my head buried in the sand but that I truly have a peace about it. I was expecting her to say like I’ve heard a million times “I’m sure it will all be fine but if it isn’t…” But she didn’t, she looked at me and said “Paige, I truly believe that God gives us a sense of discernment. Actually, I don’t believe it, I know he does.” Those words have stuck with me more than anything these past few weeks and have really kept me strong in believing that this is all going to end just fine and just be another part of our testimony for Him.

I have worn this song out since it was sent to me a few weeks ago. As much as Will and I would give anything to trade places with Dixie on Wednesday, Jesus is the one we need…

“But Jesus on hearing this answered him, “Do not fear; only believe, and she will be well.” Luke 8:50

XOXO,

Paige