Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Cancer Sucks

Ashley last August before we knew that Mr. Oaklen was onboard
This month has been rough. August 10th forever has changed my life. My baby sister that has always been a part of my life as far as I can remember was diagnosed with cancer. Through out this month I have seen examples of her strength and courage as she faces the unknown. I have shared hugs, tears, and laughs as we talk about all of the different aspects of her surgery and upcoming fight. One person that has reminded me on more than one occasion that everything happens for a reason has been my amazing little boy. On the day after I found out that Ashley was "sick" I had a very profound conversation with Bronson.

Putting Bronson on the dryer to get his shoes on I asked him to please try to be good and respectful for the day because mommy was quite sad, here is the conversation that followed:

Bronson: Mommy, why are you sad?
Me: She She is sick
Bronson: Did she die? (I literally shuttered when he asked this)
Me: No baby, she is just very sick. We need to pray for her
Bronson: Mommy, I already prayed for her last night and she will be fine, but you want to know what? I have a brother that lives in heaven and I am fine with that too.

My son just gave the quick synopsis of his life in that profound statement and helped me to realize that none of us know God's plans, but we have to believe that He knows and loves us and will take care of us. Some may question why our son already knows about his brother, but we have always felt that Bronson needs to be brought up knowing his story/testimony and the awesome power of prayer that helped him to survive. My little man is a fighter and believes more than anything that his "She She" will be fine. As a family we have been spending a lot of time praying together and I cherish every moment that I hear my little child of faith pray to God to ask him for help for his She She or to thank Him for his brother.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

August 2011

This month has been extremely busy. I think that next year we are going to maximize time spent at home during the summer rather than spend so many weekends away from home. I am not complaining about the wonderful opportunities we have had, but literally every single weekend we have been gone.

The beginning of August my mom treated all of us girls and our kiddos to a weekend at the Beach. It was pretty nice despite my baby sister not feeling well the majority of the time. The highlights were time spent playing on the beach while Oaklen took a nap with the ocean in the background and a long day at the pool.

The following weekend we went to Family Camp for Grace Community Church. As always it was a wonderful time and it was nice to catch up with so many people as we have been busy and gone pretty much every weekend this summer. I love the young women that have became such a strong presence in Bronson's life. It is nice to know that I have wonderful people that can help me with Bronson.

Last weekend Kyle and I left Bronson at Ann and Bill's and headed to Sunriver with our friends, Jim and Michelle. It was a very crazy and busy weekend. We participated in several first opportunities including hiking Paulina Lake to try to find natural waterslides, swimming in waterfalls (Jim and Kyle), and a very long river float trip. It was beautiful over there and even though I have more bug bites than I care to count it was a great weekend away.

This weekend is our weekend to celebrate the anniversary of my in-laws. They have been married for 35 years and asked to celebrate by spending the weekend at the beach with us (their family). It will be nice to go away with them for the weekend and have a chance to catch up. It also means that Bronson gets more time at the beach which is his #1 favorite activity.

I have spent this month thinking a lot. It has been a time in my life that I will never forget. Honestly, I don't think that anyone imagines watching their baby sister be diagnosed with cancer. The biggest thing that it has reminded me is that don't take a single day in your life for granted. Hug more, listen more, and of course love more. Also always make sure that you go to bed each night right with not only God, but those loved ones in your life.
Oaklen and Bronson after  a long day at the coast
Olivia and Bronson after playing outside at the beach
The boys that have captured my entire heart
Olivia and Bronson playing at our most sacred spot on the beach
Sisters at Nye Beach
Bronson doing a dance outside the girl's tent (Family Camp)
Bronson with Lily and Alex at NICU Reunion
Bronson with his new style at the Abby's Pizza Car Show

Daddy and Bronson at Car Show
Kyle and I in Sunriver

Jim and I in Sunriver

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Pulling Your Hair Out?

There are times in the life of a mommy that you truly want to pull your hair out. This morning was one of the times that I could have easily drove to work without all the detours of a demanding three year old and his latest grumpiness. He takes after his father in the way of not being a morning person, but I seriously ask for a little break of his bad morning moods.

All of these terrible mornings are all too soon forgotten when my son's little kiddo hands reach up for my face in the evening hours to let me know that, "I am gorgeous and his lovey." He has a great sweet side; just wish that it would come out when I needed it to in the morning?

The grumpy face
Do you find yourself stressed out in the mornings when you are getting ready for work? I would love to hear suggestions from other working outside of the home mommies. I lay out his clothes the night before, wait until the last possible minute to get him dressed, and don't do too much talking; however 9 out of 10 times I find myself irritated at his sleepy and whiny behavior.

My Amazing Sister, Ashley

My sister's #1 calling in life has been to be a mommy. She exudes such strength, happiness, and patience when it comes to the love of being a mother. I am beyond proud of her and hesitate to try to minimize my respect for her in words. On August 10th our life was rattled when we learned that my baby sister (age 28) has cancer. She is keeping such a positive outlook on the entire situation and gave me her mantra today...feed the Faith, starve the fears. I will continue to be amazed at my little sister than once aspired to be a professional boxer (age 2) and has always had a fierce capability to fight whatever comes her way.