First some blog business. Addison has a blog. I started it in the summer and never mentioned it, then when she was born I thought about telling you, but I forgot. Then I thought maybe I won't because I think only family reads Garrett's anyway and lets be honest, it's not super interesting and its mostly just for me. But I decided I'd tell you in case anyone would like to keep up on more of the details of the kids and not just the stuff I put on my blog. Having said that, both of the kids blogs will be going private (to 'invited' readers only) at the end of the month. If you care to keep up with them, I'd be happy to invite you to read them. Leave a comment on this post (I wont publish it) with your email address and I'll send you an invite before the end of the month. If I don't know you, don't be scared to request an invite, just maybe tell me who you are, ie. friend of a friend, cousin of a friend, mom of a cousin of a friend, etc. Ok, that's all. I'll remind you a time or two before they go private. Garrett's blog is littlebabypaw.blogspot.com Addie's blog in littlebabypaw2.blogspot.com
Now to my "friends" little boy. The blogging world seems so small to me. And I love it. I also love facebook usually. I hate talking on the phone and I never have time to. So FB and blogs remind me that I have friends. I love that we can have a couple over for dinner and I can say to the wife, "how did your job interview go today?" Even though I haven't spoken to her in 3 weeks, but I saw on FB earlier, "Wish me luck, I'm on my way to a job interview!" I love that I know that my friends son comes home from his mission in two weeks even though I haven't talked to my friend since before her son left on his mission (over two years). I love that I can call Melanie and ask her about croup, because I remember her blogging about her son having it a few months ago, even though Melanie and I really only talk when we have something to discuss about the kids. I love that I know Sarah is pregnant, Kelsey got married, Heather got a new job, it's not snowing in Utah, Sephra is on an anniversary trip, Elizabeth's and Kilene's babies are almost due, Aron passed his CFP test, Angela had a baby, Baby J is home from the hospital, baby Kate had a great 1st birthday with a cake that took 3 days to make, Morgan has to put her dog to sleep today, chick-fil-a is having a free entree rainy day special, etc. etc.
From time to time I wish I talked on the phone more and kept up with people better, and maybe I would if it wasn't for the internet. But I'm old enough to remember life without the internet and I think we're much better off with it than without it.
Moving on... I put "friend" in quotations because the friend I'm talking about? I've never met. Another reason blogs make the world feel smaller, and make me feel like we're all somehow connected. I often find myself saying things like, "My friend is finally pregnant and she's been trying for 3 years!" Or, "Oh you're from Chicago? I have friend in Chicago." Or, "My friends little girl has to be in the hospital over Christmas." And really, all these "friends" are people I don't know in 'real life'. They're fellow bloggers. People I've found over the years through friends, or friends of friends, or cousins of friends sister-in-laws brothers wifes moms friend. (Do you see now why I'm fine if you read my blog, and you want to read my kids blogs?) I've read so many blogs that have helped me get through a rough day, or a rough bout with depression, or the struggles of living far from my family, or a stupid fight. Mostly because I've found people I can relate to, and it makes me feel better to know there are people going through what I'm going through. It makes me feel less alone. I also love reading about fun trips, cute things kids say, funny things that happened that day, new traditions I want to start, cute crafty ideas, and that I'm not the only mother of a child who has licked a toilet bowl cleaner. We're all just trying to do the best we can, and blogs help me see that, and remind me of that when I'm having an off day.
So finally, the actual reason I'm writing this. The friend I'm writing about is actually my cousin's wife's friend's friend, and I've read her blog for a while. Her little 4 year old boy, Atticus, was diagnosed last friday with a brain stem tumor. This next bit is from Atticus' mom:
"Atticus has a Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG). Its a tumor located in the pons (middle) of the brain stem. The brain stem is the bottom most portion of the brain, connecting the cerebrum with the spinal cord. The majority of brain stem tumors occur in the pons (middle brain stem) and are diffusely infiltrating, (they grow amidst the nerves), and therefore are not able to be surgically removed.
The median overall survival of children diagnosed with DIPG is approximately 9 months. The 1 and 2 year survival rates are approximately 30% and less than 10%, respectively. These statistics make it one of the most devastating pediatric malignancies.
The standard treatment for DIPG is 6 weeks of radiation which often dramatically improves symptoms. Unfortunately, problems usually recur after 6 to 9 months, and progress rapidly. (Source: St Jude Childrens Research Hospital)."
I can't even imagine getting news like this. My heart aches for this family. I've cried several times this past week just thinking about them, usually when I'm holding Addie or playing with or reading to Garrett. I'm overwhelmed with how blessed I feel. I've become more patient this week with my impatient, attention demanding son, and my daughter who won't nap. The parents of Atticus are amazing. They are being so strong for their little boy even though they're dying inside.
So, if you're the praying type, please send one up for little Atticus. His mom is requesting specifically for prayers that his symptoms will decrease fast. Atticus has lost sight in his right eye and he can't balance anymore. He's a little athlete and his parents want him to be able to kick a soccer ball, run, and play sports again.
If you'd like to read the rest of their story and follow little Atticus' progress, you can find their blog HERE.