Gabby Turns 8!

Frozen Cake

She wanted “Frozen” and she wanted to be surprised.

She wanted an ice-cream cake with “Anna” and “Elsa” on top.

She wanted lots of beautifully wrapped presents.

She wanted to play games like “Pin the Tail on the Donkey”.

I love a girl who knows what she wants!

Except when her real birthday passes without adequate recognition, and she’s more than a little bummed.

It was hard on this mama to wait-it-out without the slightest suggestion that there might be something more to come.

So I reminded her that we would eventually celebrate. ;)

[Read more...]

5 Years Seizure-Free!!

I have surrendered the life and future of my sweet Gabrielle many times over.

I have released dreams and relinquished expectations.

I have placed my trust in Jesus.

8 Years Old!

 

In a way, I think deep down, I always felt like I was settling for something less good.

A less desirable life for my daughter, not just a different one.

A more difficult life for my daughter, filled with struggles and overcoming, perhaps even dependency.

A more difficult life for me.

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Hands and Feet

Hands and Feet

Have you ever noticed that emotional arousal creates incredibly vivid memories?

When your body’s stress hormone is released, memory making is kicked up a serious notch.

That’s why when something really amazing, terrifying, or shocking happens, you often remember what you were wearing, where you were standing, the music that was playing, and the smells that surrounded you.

I have many intense, detailed memories from the years when my Gabby was her sickest.

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2014 Dreams on Wings


2014-DOW-5-2

 

This was our first year participating in Dreams on Wings as ‘Team Gabby Faith’.

We were running to celebrate our miracle daughter, Gabrielle, who underwent a right hemispherectomy almost 6 years ago.

We were running to celebrate the amazing 4 1/2 years of seizure-freedom we’ve been given and all of her accomplishments that have come with that.

We were running to raise awareness of this radical brain surgery and to support the Hemispherectomy Foundation, an organization that does so much for these special individuals and their families. [Read more...]

Betsy Murphy, MPT

Betsy and Gabby Girl

 

We’ve had an amazing physical therapist working with Gabby for the longest time now.

She’s very good at what she does.

She’s smart.

She’s knowledgable. [Read more...]

Hope in One Hemisphere: Team Gabby Faith

Happy 7th Birthday

A child walking around with half a brain…

Who’s ever heard of such a thing?!

Not me.

I studied the brain in college.

I learned about Phineas Gage, a man who survived a horrific accident in which an iron rod was driven completely through his frontal lobe.

I understood how brain trauma affected personality, behavior, memories, speech, emotions, and sensory/motor function.

I read about cerebrovascular accidents and the resulting deficits depending on the location of the bleed within the brain.

I listened to lectures about the use of electroconvulsive therapy for depression, corpus callosotomy for seizures, and we even covered the use of lobotomies in schizophrenic and manic-depressive patients.

Yet I don’t ever recall learning about hemispherectomies.

I mean I suppose it’s possible that I missed my professor’s brief explanation of this radical procedure because a cute guy was sitting across from me in my neuropsychology class, but I honestly have no recollection.

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Homeschooling

 

Homeschooling my Gabby was not an easy decision, nor one I took lightly.

I have no special training.  I did not feel equipped.

Singing Along

I worried she might have learning disabilities.  I was concerned I’d limit her potential.

I feared I wouldn’t push her hard enough.

I feared that I would foster dependency.

I feared it would be too hard.

I feared frustration. [Read more...]

Four Years Seizure-FREE

Prayer Blankets

 

He carried us through the darkest of valleys.

He never left our sides.

He gave us peace when it surpassed all understanding.

He provided hope when despair was our only other choice.

 Sleepy Time

He renewed our faith with miracles when we struggled to trust that His ways were good.

He  tested our faith, strengthening it and drawing us closer.

He provided the very best doctors, so dedicated and determined to help us.

He taught us all about surrender, and His amazing faithfulness. [Read more...]

Green Eggs and Ham

 

P1040774

 

 

So we have this large bookshelf in our master bedroom that leans against the wall closest to my side of the bed.

 

When little people in our house awaken ridiculously early, they often plop themselves down in front of the assorted picture books and quietly flip their way through them.

 

That is if they know what’s best for everybody concerned.;)

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Mondays

Gabby at Work

I never really made an association between the days of the week and my children’s behavior until my mother-in-law connected the dots for me.

(Hey look, cut me some slack here. I never claimed to be the sharpest tool in the box. ;) )

Ever since that earth shattering moment, when Nana told me how it was, I have been acutely aware that Mondays are the roughest, toughest day of the week in this house.

Without fail. [Read more...]