Monday, March 7, 2011


Part of my desire to document all that goes on with Abigail's leukemia is to be able to keep track of all the positive things that will come from this new adventure. It's funny how you can hear statistics and see things happening around you without ever believing that it could happen to you. Having a child with a disability certainly never entered my mind. I guess I thought that since I wasn't considering it as an option that it just wouldn't happen. I felt that way about Leukemia. I read the statistics after their births--20 times more likely to have Leukemia. That certainly didn't mean they would right?

Over the last few months I kept having some strange thoughts enter my mind (I only wish this was unusual). When I had some quiet moments thoughts would come to me on how I would handle a child who was very ill or hospitalized. Everyone does things differently when they ponder on their ideas. I plan. I don't know if I am just a control freak or what but I actually planned what I would do in this situation. Who I would need to call, how I would talk with the kids, what I would change to accommodate the situation etc. (I know I'm a geek because I have also mentally planned several talks, funerals, and lectures). Looking back I feel like God sent me these thoughts to help me know what needed to be done when the diagnosis came. Managing a family of 9 requires some preparation. I am so grateful that I already knew what I needed to do at home so that I could make a few calls and then focus on Abigail's needs.

I was also blessed to have remembered a story an acquaintance told me about 8 years ago. She knew a boy who complained that his legs hurt and he turned out to have Leukemia. Of all the random things I have heard, this one seemed to stick and came into my mind on Wed. the 23rd. My sister watched my 4 youngest while I helped out at a school activity for my 9 yr old. When I returned I hung out with her for a while and had lunch there. Abigail was acting tired and wouldn't stand up. I had just taken her to the pediatrician the day before for her lethargy and he said she just had a virus. That had been the 3rd time that month she had been in to him. I had taken her for an ear infection and a rash which he called dry skin. (turns out it is called petechiae and my doctor should have caught it). Anyway, Cassie said that I mentioned I was concerned about Leukemia. I didn't remember this. I did remember mentioning it to my mom when Abigail woke up screaming inconsolably after her nap. I called and took her in AGAIN to my pediatrician and mentioned to him that I was concerned about Leukemia and relayed that same story. Finally he send me to the local hospital for x-rays and blood work.

As I look back, it's funny how things work. I remember sitting in the hospital praying that the phlebotamists would be able to hit her veins on the first try. She is a tough stick for a lot of reasons and as they were digging for a vein I was begging God to let them hit it. I had some things I really wanted to do that night and driving 25 min. to the local Children's hospital wasn't one of them. I am embarrassed to admit that I was angry when my prayer wasn't answered. Why couldn't he just extend a little mercy to a situation that was not a big deal? When I got home to make arrangements to go up, Abigail's fever broke 101. The doctor had told me to call if that happened. He sent me to the ER at the children's hospital anyway.

Leukemia would have been discovered with the blood tests at either hospital. The difference is that one would have been over the phone the next morning to just me, and instead my husband and I were able to hear it together and Abigail was admitted right away. That led to her being available for the cancellation that afternoon that expedited her much needed treatment. I need to remember that God's view is greater than mine. If I am going to believe in Him I have to believe that He knows what He is doing. Except for my breakdown at her first visit to the chemo clinic (sleep deprivation probably) I have just felt an overwhelming sense of peace. I wish I knew the outcome or the challenges we will face with this trial, but I know that we can learn so much from it if we choose to.
We have already begun to see why we are here in Utah at my parents' home. Having extra adult hands have been essential. This neighborhood has been amazing to our family and they act as if they were just waiting for a big service project. I have never eaten better or had a cleaner home to live in (let's face it--housekeeping has never been my thing). Josh's new job is filled with some incredibly compassionate individuals. We were visited in the hospital, given a generous collection, and Josh was hired on full time. (He was previously a contract employee for his first 90 days.) If they hadn't offered to hire him on we would have gone April, May & June with no medical insurance. The tender mercies of the Lord have been astonishing and we have seen His had in so many places we had never recognized.


  1. I am speechless. and crying. I'm just in awe that you can see Gods hands in the mishaps, like the blood draw,, and see that yes, He was there guiding you.
    Abigail is so beautiful.I'm so glad I found your blog.

  2. Kim- you are one special spirit yourself and God is leading you by the hand :)

  3. So heartfelt, honest & articulate. Thank you for sharing. This helps us all deal with our own trials a little bit better and be grateful.

  4. It is amazing to me all the tender mercies that our Heavenly Father gives us, even in our toughest times. I admire your strength and faith in seeing those mercies from the beginning. We will be praying for your little girl and you and the rest of your family.

  5. We'll be praying for your sweet girl.

  6. Ever since Tate cried wanting the twins to come home with us, we have held a special place in our hearts for them. We hope and pray that everything goes well for Abigail. We think you guys are awesome and wish you all the very best. I'm so glad to hear about all the blessings you are receiving. Please know that we are praying for all of you!

  7. We love your family so much. I am so touched to hear the gentle whisperings the Lord gave you to help you prepare for these events. I know that He lives and is aware of your needs. And though there always seem to be those difficult times of discouragement, He is there. We have been and will continue to pray for your sweet family. How I wish we lived closer! If we can do anything from So Cal- please let us know! Love you guys!!!