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Facing Fears

Here’s a shot of yesterday’s homecoming:

Homecoming

All of our other children went to play at their cousin’s, so Nat and I got to spend the whole day with Max! It was such a joy! The peace in our home is so rejuvenating. Max’s voice has been a whisper. We talked for over an hour after dinner, and Max got his voice back! He shocked himself when he heard his normal voice again.

Max definitely has his appetite back, too! He had some of his favorites today: omelets, deviled eggs, and Café Rio burritos!

At dinner, he shared his perspective on the accident, and we got to share ours. We took a walk outside, and he said, “I want to go look at the place where it happened in the garage. I need to face my fears.” And he did it.

Home

Miracle of miracles: HE’S HOME!!!!
We brought in a bed so we can care for him. We are in our own beds in our own home rejoicing that our sweet family can be together again! Miracle of miracles. So grateful for this new stage of healing. 

Praying that the healing will continue.

impossible

Everlasting Kindness

Natalie and I were asked to speak on Strengthening Testimony in sacrament meeting today. It was a sacred gift to be able to share the miracles with our ward family.
Natalie’s Talk: Audio | Text
Andy’s Talk: Audio | Text
In between our talks, a young man sang a moving rendition of My Kindness Shall Not Depart from Thee

Then we rushed to the hospital to do wound care. We celebrated these miracles:

  • Max ate 1200 calories yesterday!
  • Max had his best physical therapy session yet – thank you Mark!
  • Max has hit every benchmark and is healing so well!
  • Nat and I are now certified to do his wound care, and (drum roll please)
  • MAX COMES HOME TOMORROW!!!! He starts a new phase of his healing.We are all super excited to be together again!! So so so grateful!!!

Love

Nat and I want to thank the army of angels (seen and unseen) who have supported our family:

Susan, Kathy, Mason, Lorene, Markus, Anna, Daniel, Mindy, Katelyn, Laura, Andrea, Bryan, Kathleen, Angela, Quinn, Randy, Cara, Danny, Nicole, John, Narelle, Matt, Seantay, Brianna, Ashlee, Justin, Eric, Julie, Nick, Tiffany, Kelly, Brittain, David, Tammy, Carol Ann, Christy, Mark, Roy, Marjorie, James, Chelsea…

Nurses:

  • John-Nathan
  • Mary
  • Colby
  • Laura & Laura
  • Lisa
  • Julie
  • Martina
  • Amy
  • Alex
  • Jennifer
  • Jason
  • Mary
  • Barbara
  • Halle
  • Jenn
  • Jill
  • Liz
  • April
  • Brad

Doctors:

  • Dr. Lewis
  • Dr. Cochran
  • Dr. Morris

Other Angels on Staff:

  • Kristen
  • Walter
  • Daphne
  • Bret
  • Ray

All who brought meals, sat with Max, watched our kids, prayed for us, fasted, shared our posts, visited, sent cards…

Max has inspired us beyond words. He gets to prove his strength through daily physical therapy over the next 6 months. Thank you in advance for your prayers for him to have the will power and patience to endure.

Hug

Miracles today:
- Receiving this “hug” from our boy! Feels so good to be learning and doing life with our boy!
Hug
-I asked Max what he was thinking at one point today. I was thinking his response might be a little discouraged or disappointed or depressed. Instead he replied, “I’m so grateful for this moment with you.” I will spare you from describing the moment, but it was less than comfortable or desirable and for his mind and focus to be on gratitude is an amazing miracle to me.
-Amidst the frustration of just wanting to go home & meeting all the benchmarks and still remaining there, I am so grateful for Andy and all of our children and the family connection that we share that makes any moment apart one of longing and moments spent together so sweet!
-Grateful for sweet friends who bring hope, smiles, and distractions:)
-Grateful for the gifts of the earth (whether diffusing, doing foot soaks, or just rubbing on Max’s feet) these essential oils support Max’s mind & body so beautifully.
-Grateful to make it through our 1st dressing change all by ourselves.

Thank you for your prayers for Max’s growing appetite & a sweet return home.
- Nat

Joy

Hallelujah for the miracles of today:
- Max started out the day walking laps to avoid his blood thinner shot
- Max’s last oxygen issues were miraculously resolved after a good nose blow
- Every major body function working well!
- Decrease on all meds & Max is handling very well
- Eating & swallowing well with soft foods
- Time together with Max outside
outside
- Feeling joy for the first time in weeks. I’ve felt grateful numerous times, but just today I felt joy again as Andy walked me out to the car and we reflected on the sweet relief that Max’s progress brings and just looking forward to being together as a family again just fills my heart to overflowing!
“Find a place inside where there’s joy, and the joy will burn out the pain.”
-Joseph Campbell
We are all surviving & the joy is burning out the pain!
Praying for: an appetite & calorie intake, strength to walk tall and straight & do physical therapy, help for Mom & Dad to do wound care on our own, and our family together with Max home soon!
- Nat

Katie

Miracles today:
-Max enjoyed fresh air & the great outdoors!
Screen Shot 2014-07-25 at 12.15.54 AM
-Max’s classmate, Katie Hancock, was in a car crash and finished her journey on earth today. If Max’s accident gave them any increased awareness or gratitude in their time together, we would call that a miracle. I don’t know why Katie went and Max stayed but I know it’s all by divine design. Oh Heaven bless her family!
-Max watched fireworks from the helipad that they life flighted him in on. So grateful to be on this end and be blessed with more time on earth together.
-Max walked all the way to the therapy gym and is rockin’ there. I’m so grateful he’s a fighter.
-Time together with the rest of our family while angel friends & family stayed with Max.

“Knowest thou not, that thou art A SPARK OF DEITY, STRUCK from the FIRE OF HIS ETERNAL BLAZE, and BROUGHT FORTH in the midst of ETERNAL BURNINGS?” John Taylor

This is my new favorite quote. I love how it confirms that it’s God who’s making us through the spark of deity that we are, and that his eternal blaze and burnings are what is bringing us forward to more of who we truly are! Love. love. love

Praying for: strong swallowing, breathing, & urinating capacity, and the cast process to go well for Max’s left arm mobility. Home on the perfect timeline. Katie Hancock’s family to be comforted.
- Nat

Love or Fear

3 weeks ago today Max had his accident.
Today he had his first real shower during wound care in the tank room.
Today they pulled out the PIC line. (He can do pain meds orally as needed.)
Today he walked (grateful for magnesium & Epsom salt foot bath)
Today he stretched more than ever.
Praying to pass the swallow test, have lungs totally strengthened, more standing & walking tall right home.

wall

I hear that some people don’t believe in miracles. Some people even choose to throw stones at those of us that do. No worries. They simply don’t know what I know. I can totally see how they could feel that way AND I choose to believe anyway. Drawing strength from the Light! So grateful!!
- Nat

“I can see laughter, or I can see tears
I see a choice, love or fear
I choose to feel the whole world crying
For the strength that we can rise above
I choose love”
- James Gallaway

Courage

Miracles of today:
-Totally done with IV
-Sooo grateful I can put natural solutions on Maxs feet and in his air (I feel so empowered when I listen to the dr & nurses each day and address potential issues before they turn into issues)
-Third times the charm on successful life without a catheter (I’m confident those muscles will be ready with a little more distance from sleepy meds and a little Juniper Berry support)
-Lungs are getting stronger and stronger. Hoping for oxygen free tomorrow
-Physical therapy is kicking all of our trash (despite his incredible courage- this hurts- Max cries a few times and then I find myself tearing up. It is easier when Max is in the therapy gym thinking of how he can strengthen and encourage others
-We are processing this experience and the real emotions that come with it one moment at a time (sometimes talking through it, praying a lot and breathing in lots of aromatics, and sometimes just distracting Maxs mind with a phone call or a movie when he needs it)

-Love & gratitude to a loving Father on Heaven who loves us enough to give us this experience.

-Grateful to hear and follow the impressions from within. Without a doubt, the capacity I call upon the most to make decisions is intuition. I do my due diligence, we do projections, we do a bit of research to get the facts. But at the end of the day, the driving force in our life comes from listening to that inner, instinctual voice. Our natural knowing that isn’t bound by logic, fear or past experience. Thank you for natural knowing!!

-Hallelujah that when a nurse says MRSA or pneumonia or whatever else they inevitably will say in their sick care process that we do not identify with it and roll forward trusting God and the process.

-Countless amazing nurses, Drs., physical therapists, burn care team, and so many more! Amazing angel care here makes each moment more human and doable.

Please pray for Max’s legs to be strong and done cramping, body to remain strong (especially lungs and swallow for real food tomorrow), for max to believe that he can do it all :)
- Nat

Compassion

Max walked to the end of the long hall and back today – twice!

Max Walking

Max and I watched Elder Holland’s conference talk, Lord, I Believe. We heard a baby crying, and I told Max about the 18-month old baby girl Emery in the adjacent room who was burned on 100% of her body. She has been here for over 3 months and most of her right hand is gone. Max started to cry and said, “Dad, can we stop this video so we can pray for her.” He plead for Heavenly Father to help that sweet baby.

It is so like Max to “turn on a light switch in the other’s room when his own is for now so dark.”

Deliverance

Miracles today: 
1) Max sleeping peacefully for a few hours now, dozed right through his shot, and up for his first night of sleep protocol(the closest thing to real sleep in the hospital:)). 
2) Watching Max fold his arms for every prayer. 
3) Reading posters from school friends & being in so much gratitude for all the love & prayers.
4) Christ is truly our captain and championing Max through this whole process. From the first nights when I couldn’t sleep I held this little stone in my hand to remind me of my mantra: I trust. I believe, help thou mine unbelief. It’s still serving me well. “…If ye will turn to the Lord with full purpose of heart, and put your TRUST in Him, and serve him with all diligence of mind…He will, according to his own will and pleasure, deliver you out of bondage.” He’s delivering us out of bondage and bandages… (I love this thought Ashlee Miller) one day at a time.

Please pray for: support through his last tough dressing change on Monday, swallowing and exit body functions to return completely, strength for physical therapy, and deliverance home to heal.
- Nat