Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Almost two years later...

The first video is of Ainsley right before she was diagnosed with leukemia in February 2013.  The second video is from a few weeks ago when we got a little snow here in Oklahoma.  It brought tears to my eyes to see Ainsley so carefree again!  I didn't catch all the fun before but there was a lot of twirling and throwing snow!  

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Disney World!!! Part 1

Let me just say that this trip was AMAZING!  I am not great with words, so I will just show lots of pictures!  Thank you so much to Make A Wish.  We will always cherish the memories that we made.
                    Christopher, the Christmas Elf came to wish Ainsley a happy Make A Wish trip!

 The first character we saw when we walked into Disney World was Pluto!  It was so tender to see Ainsley feed Pluto biscuits just like she had wished!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Make - A - Wish

Although we try to see the silver lining in Ainsley having cancer, the truth is cancer is still a very dark cloud.  But one of the bright lights of this experience has been Make A Wish.  They are such an amazing foundation.  They have let us be a part of some very fun activities that let Ainsley and the girls forget the harsh reality of cancer.  Over the summer, Ainsley met her two wish coordinators, Lindsey and Amy.  They are such sweet girls.  They asked Ainsley what her wish would be if she could have or do anything.  She told them, "I want to feed Pluto biscuits!" (And if Mickey didn't have any biscuits, she would bring some of Mavis and Lila's biscuits:)  So, Disneyworld?!  I love how unique Ainsley is!  
We were able to go to Disney on Ice in September!  Ainsley and the girls had an amazing time!

I love that Ainsley is looking up at Mickey!

This is Erin!  She is one of the amazing angels at Make A Wish!

In October Amy and Lindsey dropped off a little surprise for Ainsley!  It was so fun because we had just finished up a four night stay at the hospital, and Ainsley and I were ready for some excitement!  
Ainsley got a basket of fun with a sign that said, "Ainsley, Your wish to go to Disney World will come true in February!"


The Milk Man

So, I wanted to just write a quick update.  Ainsley has been doing really well the past few weeks.  At the beginning of January she got a stomach bug, but other than that she has been very healthy!  Tender mercy:).  Ainsley was able to begin the next phase of treatment called maintenance.   We now go to clinic every other week and she takes a variety of chemo drugs at home.  It has been a welcomed change!  Although I was joking that I think I have a little bit of post traumatic stress disorder.  I think you just put your head down and keep going, and when things start to slow back down you realize you probably haven't dealt with all the emotion that comes with cancer.  One day at a time....

Ainsley is getting a lumbar puncture today (just finished).  Daddy got to take her there, and then Mommy and Hudson joined after taking sisters to school. We are so grateful for propofol!  It's the white "milky" medicine that they give her through her port that makes her fall asleep.  The anesthesiologist has become known to Ainsley as 'the milk man.'  

Last  month Ainsley was a little loopy after waking up from her spinal tap.  When the anesthesiologist came in to check on her she sat up and said, "Are you my milk man?"  He said, "yes"!  She then said, "You are SO cute!"  It was hilarious to see the doctor's face turn bright red!  I sure love the spice Ainsley brings to every day!!!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Throwback Thursday!

I swear, every time I go to post something, someone is crying, throwing up, or I am throwing up!  It has been a long week!  As I looked back on my pictures I thought it would be fun to do a Throwback Thursday!   I wanted to highlight some of the many visitors we have had since Ainsley's diagnosis:)

My Sweet friend Becca!  Oh how I adore this girl!  She came and helped out from Arizona, while Bryan had to be away at a conference.  I was SO grateful to see her!  She has been such a rock for me! She has also gone above and beyond to make sure our needs have been taken care of!  LOVE...

Our dear friend Jeff, also from Arizona, was able to make a quick visit in the spring.  I swear, seeing Bryan with his best friend was like magic.  I saw a light in Bryan's eyes that hadn't been there in a long time.  (Bryan and Jeff went to medical school together:)

My AMAZING Sister and my AMAZING Mommy, who had just had hip surgery tow weeks before, drove across the country with FIVE kids to come and help out!  My Sister took care of 9 kids, 2 of them being under six months, and 3 dogs while Ainsley and I were in the hospital! Now that is love!  They were just what the doctor ordered!

One of our most unexpected visitors and friendships came from the Tubbs and Steed families.  (Cheryl or Cheryld as Ainsley likes to call her, is a Steed!)  Cheryl contacted us from Pocatello shortly after Ainsley was diagnosed and said she wanted to help!  She has been a rock for our family ever since!  She, and her husband Jordan, and her family have gone above and BEYOND with helping our family. Cheryl came to stay in Oklahoma over the summer and was such an amazing help.  Cheryl's Dad, Randy,who lives here in Owasso,  has also been...  just...  amazing!  I am so humbled to have such Christ like examples in my life.

My friend Tiffany was the perfect visitor at the hospital!  Never underestimate the power of bubbles and love!

Sara, and so MANY other friends came by to play, cheer up and hang with Ainsley!  (MANDY, LINDA, CHRISTY, to name a few!)  I have some amazing friends in Oklahoma!

This is our friend Kayla from Emmy's Heart- Oklahoma!  She spearheads an amazing non profit group that brings tutu's and capes to kids who are suffering from cancer!  She is amazing!

GRANDMA SUE...  She deserves her very own post...  (I will have to do that!)  Bryan's Mom has been amazing throughout this trial.  I think she has been in Oklahoma half the year, and she always brings a smile!  My cup runneth over...

Bryan's Dad, Terry has also been a real trooper!  Not only did he selflessly let his sweet wife come and stay with us so often, he also went through cancer treatments of his own while Sue was here.  How do you express enough gratitude?

My sweet Daddy took almost two weeks off to come stay with us during one of Ainsley's rough stages.  He is such a bright light!  He was so fun, comforting and loving to all of us!  We needed it!  XOXO

One of our stay at the hospital, a group from the Navy came to visit the children.  It was SO touching to  listen to those brave soldiers tell Ainsley that she was their hero and that they knew she could beat cancer.  

My amazing, loving, tuna fish head, childhood and lifelong friend Lindsey and her family came to visit in November!  I LOVE this family!  I have known Matt and Lindsey since we were teenagers, (Lindsey since I was eight),  and I am SO grateful to have them in my life.  The are both so loving and selfless.  There is never enough time when we see each other! 

Uncle Matt and cute Annie!
 Wow....  I am just blown away!  And this doesn't even count for all those who have loved and supported, and prayed and cheered, both near and far.  I really want to thank all of you!  You have all been such amazing examples of Christ like love...

Just a little update on Ainsley...  Ainsley, Hudson and I all got a stomach bug on Tuesday.  Poor Bryan was up all night taking care of us all.  He is a real trooper!  Bryan took Ainsley in to the Doctor on Wednesday.  Her blood work looked good.  We were so relieved!  I have a lot more to update on Ainsley, but that will have to do for now!  Thank you so much for all of your continued love and prayers!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

My heart stopped.....

Last week, Ainsley's platelet count had been low.  It wasn't quite low enough for a transfusion but we were watching closely for severe bruising and petechia, which are little dots of bruising.  I had tried hard to do everything short from wrapping her in bubble wrap to keep her safe!  With her platelets low, it can be very dangerous if she were to hit her head, because it would be hard to stop any bleeding.  I could tell she wasn't feeling very well on Sunday.  She slept most of the day, didn't eat or drink very much and she was complaining  of stomach pain.  It progressively got worse as the evening went on.  I felt so helpless.  She would scream out in pain, and I didn't know how to help her.  Around 8:30, Ainsley's face went pale and I could tell she was going to throw up.  I dumped out the Halloween bucket and ran to her.  My heart stopped when I saw blood.  I started to scream for Bryan.  I was SO scared.  I think I was more afraid at that moment than ever before.

We called the doctor and he said to bring her in.  We called our sweet friend and neighbor, Robert and he came and helped Bryan give Ainsley a blessing.  Bryan and I were both crying but I felt so comforted by blessing.  I am so grateful for a loving Heavenly Father who knows our needs and helps calm our fears.  I am also SO grateful for a husband who is worthy to give her a blessing.  This is what Bryan posted on Facebook.  

This is Bryan. We are so thankful for all of your prayers and the opportunity to give Ainsley a Priesthood blessing after she had thrown up a stomach full of blood. She and Jenny are finally sleeping. She is getting a platelet transfusion. Her hemoglobin (oxygen-carrying part of the blood) is low but stable enough for now. The blood in her vomit has stopped. I have never been so thankful to be puked on, because this last round got all over my shirt and was NOT bloody. I'm still wearing that vomit-covered shirt because I am so relieved that it is not blood. Miracles happen, we've witnessed one tonight. Some of the words of the blessing were: "We rebuke the Destroyer and command the bleeding to stop." I'm grateful that I was able to give my daughter a blessing when she needed it, and that within minutes of my call there was a fellow Priesthood holder (and dear friend) there to help. The power of the Priesthood, to act in God's name here on earth, is great. Not sure what tomorrow will bring, but so grateful to have these girls resting for now. The Savior healed when He was on the earth and He continues healing by the power of His Holy Priesthood today.
Robert stayed with the kids until our other amazing friend, Christy came and stayed the night.  We are blessed with amazing friends, who help at the drop of a hat!  The next morning, Christy got the girls off to school and another friend Mandy picked Hudson up and kept him for the day.  I am amazed at how well the girls did the next day.  We made sure to call the school to give the girls an update later in the day.  Their teachers knew about the circumstances and took good care of our girls!  They have such loving and amazing teachers!  

Once we arrived to the hospital, they checked her counts with a blood test.  Her platelets were still low and so they gave her a transfusion.  The next morning they told us that her hemoglobin was low too.  (Red blood cells)  So she received a blood transfusion too.  As soon as she got blood, I could tell she was starting to feel better.  She went from a pale gray, to a warm pink in skin tone.  They told us the bleeding was likely from a ulcer caused by the steroids she has been taking.  She now takes medicine daily to combat acid.  I am so grateful for AMAZING nurses and doctors who are for my girl!  I am also grateful for the love and prayers of so many.  We feel them and we are strengthened by those prayers.

             This was the day before we went to the hospital!  I love that my girls are so creative!
                                                    Ainsley receiving a blood transfusion.
                                                       The next day!  Hooray for blood!
Playroom fun!
The view from our room.  I love Oklahoma!

This is one of the games we play to pass time when we are in the hospital!  We walk ALOT of laps around the hospital halls! 

Ainsley has been doing well since we have been home.  I have kept her away from large groups of people and out of stores.  I am pretty nervous that she will get sick.  We go back on Wednesday to see if Ainsley's counts are high enough to start the next phase of treatment!  We are 9 months down in a 2 1/2 year journey!  Pretty crazy:)