Monday, March 30, 2009
But when we left, we weren't ready to go home. Instead, we went to a local small lake. So did all of Canada's geese population. And apparently they eat well there. The proof was on the bottom of our shoes.
It was nice to get out into the sunshine, and get honked at. C'mon spring, I'm waiting for you.
Sunday, March 29, 2009
Russell touched a lot of lives in his just-short-of-fifteen years.
Diagnosed with leukemia the day before his 4th birthday and then with a brain tumor a few weeks after his 13th, Russell has had what most people would call a rough life. Well, most people except Russell. During his 4+ years of treatment, faced with some of the most painful and unpleasant conditions and procedures humans ever experience, Russell riveted all who came near him with his courage, patience, and of all things, inexplicable grace.
Doctors, nurses, friends, family, even strangers. Most of them walked away from their time with Russell and report similar feelings. Why isn't he complaining? How can he be so willing? How come I feel better after being with Russell? For those of us close to Russell it is so obvious.
Russell knew Jesus.
Russell met Jesus face-to-face at 1:26 this morning. He was peaceful.
Make no mistake. Those of us left behind here at the hospital with Russell's empty body are hurting deeply. We feel a great loss. But make no second mistake. We have been blessed beyond words by the experience. At his side, we have laughed out loud and cried 'till we were dry. But we have known the Real Deal! We've been touched by greatness. We have known, right up close, a real hero in our lives. We have known Russell.
"Thank you" does not seem enough to say for your sustaining words and care but we do feel and mean it from deep inside.
Update: This was written by Russell's parents, not by me. Sorry.
Saturday, March 28, 2009
This quilt was so fun. My son John was two when he started drawing and writing. This quilt has pictures he drew from the ages of two to four. I took white muslin, traced his pictures onto it, and colored them in with fabric markers. He supervised the entire thing *rolls eyes*. I quilted around all the pictures and words, by hand, about 1/4" between lines. It only took four years.
So, John has had a quilt all these years, and Sam has not. He needed one, right? But I told him sorry, I'm not hand quilting it! I quilted John's by hand because at the time, I didn't have a sewing machine. Now, I have my dream machines. Well, not THE dream machine - that would be a Gammill long-arm, lol. But I dearly love my Viking D1's.
Russell is still fighting, surrounded by his very large family. This time with him is a gift from God. Please keep them in your prayers.
Friday, March 27, 2009
Look at those illustrations - lovely! I don't know anyone who has a figure like that, but it's nice to dream.
And lastly, a purse that will really come in handy at the American Sewing Expo in September. Nothing like planning ahead. It's leather, and has loops on the back so you can wear it on a belt. I don't wear a belt. Maybe I can clip my keys to the loops.
Unless God decides a different course in these remaining hours, Russell is going to be with Him very soon. It has been difficult beyond words to tell Russell there is nothing else we can do to “protect” him from leaving us. It is heartbreaking and unforgettable. There is no doubt we are all at peace (including Russell) about where Russell is going and that he will be there waiting for us. But the separation of the moment and the sadness of what Russell will miss, with us, on earth is a bit overwhelming right now. God knows of course, what it is like to lose a son and He knows the glory of the big picture. We are praying for His strength to help us endure the sadness and walk through this chapter in our lives. There is a joy and peace that passes our understanding, in knowing the Lord’s goodness and larger loving plan is beneath our sadness.
The neurology assessment based on all the brain wave data collected yesterday is that Russell is completely paralyzed on his right side and the remaining brain areas have profound and irreversible damage caused by the tumor and the 40+ minute seizure the night before. The doctors have exhausted their knowledge and skills. The Lord will decide where Russell goes from here. Unless God provides differently it is expected that shortly Russell’s body will be unable to sustain itself. Most everyone in the family is here at the hospital together and although we are torn up that Russell will soon be gone, we are at peace knowing he will be free of pain and standing aside Jesus joyously awaiting all of us.
Your prayers, love, and care continue to be so valuable.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Russell had a major "episode" Wednesday night at 11:00pm. It was either a seizure and posturing or most likely a combination of both. The posturing is due to a build up of fluid or pressure in the brain. The episode was quite long, emotional and very scary.
At this point he is in ICU, he is intubated and at this point not breathing totally on his own. He is getting for morphine for comfort, but is not in any pain. They are in the process of backing off on the breathing machine to see if he can breath on his own and so far he is.
Specific prayers are needed for Russell's comfort, our peace and decison making.
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
By the way, if you like to drive your Rav4 through great big puddles, close your sunroof first. Just sayin'.
I made this bag yesterday.
If anyone can tell me how to add a link, and use a word instead of the whole link, I would greatly appreciate it!
Anyway, this bag went together very quickly and easily - great pattern! I like zippers in my purses though, so I added one.
Monday, March 23, 2009
And now to dust off the camera batteries, ask for Photoshop for my birthday, and get busy! I look forward to getting to know you creative people out there!