Wednesday, June 27, 2012

A Year Later, Part I

I'm feeling a bit nostalgic these days.  July 8th marks our one year anniversary of Kari's diagnosis.  I distinctly remember every single day of the week before her diagnosis. 

I had taken a few days of vacation from work because Gammy had gone on a trip with her sisters and mother.  The first two days the kids and I played outside in the pool and had picnics in the yard.  We went to the park, got ice cream, lit sparklers at night time, planted new flowers around the porch, and just enjoyed being together at home.  I remember at one point Kari said, "Mommy, I wish you could stay home with us all the time."  And with all my heart, I wished it right along with her. 

The entire winter had been tough.  Kari had, at one point, passed out on Matthew and I.  We rushed her to the emergency room only to be told by two different doctors (including her pediatrician) that it was normal for kids to pass out at times.  Oh, okay?! Pardon me for not realizing that my 3 year old could pass out and be considered normal.   We did not return to that particular pediatrician. 

Both Kari and myself battled 3 rounds of strep throat and I was eventually treated for mono.  A month later when Kari showed the same symptoms (fever, sore throat, extreme fatigue), they immediately treated her for the same.  Only, her symptoms continued for a month after her treatment.  Fever and extreme fatigue were happening weekly with Kari.  I spoke to several members of my family, co-workers, doctors and such...they ALL told me not to be paranoid and that Kari was fine and healthy.  But deep in my heart, I knew something was wrong.  I had felt it the day she passed out even though her leukemia couldn't have possibly been detected at that time.  But even if it couldn't have been detected, I still don't understand why the doctors didn't listen to me when I repeatedly told them that I felt like something was wrong.  So what if nothing showed up in the blood work?  Why weren't they just a tad bit more concerned when my then 3 year old was so sick all winter?  What about preventative testing?

The weekend following my vacation from work, we left on Saturday with Chris, Lacey, Gammy and Pappy to travel to Hollywood, Alabama for homecoming there.  We had such a fun time and the little video clips we took on our phones are hilarious!!  I'll see what I can do to get them posted on here at some point.  We were there for church on Sunday and were going to head back home Monday morning, July 4th.  However, Kari fell out of the hotel bed early Monday morning and the knot over her eye from hitting the night stand was gruesome.  She looked like an abused child.  I was very concerned about it but was told, once again, to not worry about it.  It wasn't that Kari had never had a pump knot.  It was the fact that it looked so horrible and discolored. 

Another clue that Kari wasn't exactly as healthy as she had always been...her pale face.  She had been swimming numerous times, played out in the sun almost daily but didn't have a touch of sun on her face.  Kari had always tanned quickly.  Why was she so pale and sickly looking?  Once again, I was told that it was a result of her sickness all winter. 

I returned to work on Tuesday as normal.  I remember sitting at my desk thinking about how much I loved being at home with my kids but at the same time, thankful that I had a good job and wonderful co-workers. 


These pictures were taken almost exactly one year ago and about 4 weeks before diagnosis.  You can read this post which was the last post before her diagnosis.  It sounded so normal.  So carefree. 

I'll admit that my nostalgia has extended to other things that have changed for our family.  We've been at Memaw's house this week and staying in Jackson County brings back a load of memories.  Some good, some bad.  I see those that I went to school with and their lives seems so normal.  Husbands, wives, kids, a house, vacations...at times it seems that my life has stood still while everyone else's has continued to move on as life does.  And I don't say that to sound like I'm having a pity party!  I'm by no means doing that.  But there are times when I wonder if, someday, things will change for the kids and I.  I have some pretty serious things that I'm praying about right now concerning where we need to be and God's will for us.  I keep reminding myself that God has a plan and He will work it out for our good.  Bro. Davy said that God will work it out for our good even though it may not be how we had it planned.  It may not be for our financial good or for our physical good because christians go through financial hardships and physical hardships too.  But it may be for our spiritual good. I can't remember exactly how you put it, Bro. Davy.  I may need you to do a guest post soon because I'll totally mess up what you said. :)

So, this is the first post of my reflections on this past year.  I'm going to attempt to finish before July 8th.  It's emotional for me to remember all the changes that have taken place in our family but I also think there's a healing in sharing what is becoming our testimony. 

We love you all! Thank you for your prayers, friendship, and support! Don't forget the Light the Night walk in September! If you would like to donate to Team Kari to help us reach our $200 goal or join our walk, please email me at kariandmalachi@live.com.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Team Kari

I think I've posted several times now about Kari being the Honored Hero this year for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society's Light the Night Walk.  We feel so honored that they would choose her and let us be a part of a worthy cause!

The walk will be September 22nd at the Whitaker Bank Ballfield in Lexington.  I know many of you live out of state and wouldn't be able to be there.  But we have developed our own team this year since we are playing a big part in this year's campaign!  Team Kari is going to be comprised of our family and friends who have been with us on our journey.  I've set our fundraising goal at only $200.  I think it's a reasonable goal considering we know so many people!  If anybody is interested in being part of our Team Kari goal, $1 or $5 or $10 will go a long way in helping us meet our fundraising goal for the walk!  I have 3 months to reach $200 and I know with your help I can reach it!

If any of you are interested in giving even just $1, you can email me at kariandmalachi@live.com or send me a text message and I'll give you directions for sending the money!  Also, if you would like to be part of the walk, I can get you the info for registering! We would be so honored to have you with us on that special night!

I'm going to try to post a video of Kari.  It's my first so I hope you're able to view it.  She is so serious about the bug in the swimming pool. 

video

Thanks for your prayers, support and friendship!  We love you!