Mitchell's 5th Birthday

Mitchell's 5th Birthday

Mitchell's 4th Birthday

Mitchell's 4th Birthday
February 2011
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Nov 2010

Mitchell's 3rd Birthday

Mitchell's 3rd Birthday
Feb 2010

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Share Mitchell's Smile

I know many are anxious for an update on Mitchell since things are always changing.  He has seriously declined and as of the last couple of days has not been able/willing to swallow food and drink.  This is common as our bodies slow down and prepare for death.  He sleeps almost all day and is almost completely unresponsive/communicative.  Obviously he no longer "feels" like our little boy, but it does feel like we're holding an angel and we are cherishing these days.  While this is obviously painful and heart-wrenching, we are trying to focus on what we know to be true.  Death is not the end, but another glorious beginning.  Just as when we come into this world, death is the portal to move into the next; a world of peace, free from pain and sorrow and full of joy and love.  We have felt angels administering to us and Mitchell in our home and it has been so special to participate in such a sacred sphere.  Even still, there are moments of intense sadness, fear for how I can ever let his little body leave my arms--and I KNOW it's just a body!--and pain watching his little body deteriorate.

One thing that keeps us going is our Mitchell's ongoing service to us.  While he can't talk or move, he still tries so SO very hard to smile for us.  It is truly inspiring and heartwarming.  He has done this all through these past two and a half years and we never cease to be amazed at how he knows we need this and how much it lifts us up.  He is totally amazing!

After weeks of prayer on various issues, one of which is a way to honor Mitchell and who he is, we received a very (and I mean VERY) strong impression that we are to hold a day of service in Mitchell's honor.  September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and we feel it is fitting to honor Mitchell as well as all of these amazing souls who have both succumbed to or survived cancer.  This service can be big or small; individual or as a large group.  We plan to wear yellow and feel that this service will make a big difference for both those who serve and those who will be served.  We are working on a website:, which should be finished later this week.  We also should have some publicity materials, ie video, out soon too.

The day is SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 15th, but if for some reason that date doesn't work for you, please make an effort on a day of your choice in September.  We are hoping for people to email us via the website and we'll post your stories: what you did, how you felt, how it impacted your community, etc.  We hope this will be an ongoing annual event, and possibly might have a facebook page with monthly ideas of service activities to keep us all going.  We believe service more than anything else can change the world faster and more effectively than anything/anyone else and to this end we strive to honor Mitchell's legacy!

Mitchell's greatest desire in life was to be a missionary, which essentially is a life of service.  We know this is how we are supposed to honor him and his smile.  PLEASE get out there and "Share Mitchell's Smile" on Mitchell's Day!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Our Mitchell Boy

We have had a wonderful month of family time.  We were able to see extended family members at a family reunion as well as our cousins, aunts, and uncles.  Mitchell has a difficult time in crowds because of noise, so we stayed home part of the day so he could relax.  We also spent a lot of the month going on and off of medications trying to find something that would bring him relief.  He was spending approx. 6-8 hours each day screaming.  He couldn't respond to questions so we didn't know how to help him and he didn't like to be touched so we pretty much just had to sit there feeling helpless and frustrated that he has to go through such agony.

As always we continued to pray for direction in how we can help him and for him to feel how much we love him.  We also prayed for at least a level of relief to come to him so he would not feel such suffering.  Knock on wood, but we are hoping we've found the right equation of meds for him to feel a bit of comfort throughout the day.  It will be a constant evaluating process as to what level of intensity he should be at, but at least we know these particular meds can work.

We started hospice a couple of weeks ago.  They come in twice each week to check vitals and make sure we are stocked with the necessary medications.  They also have a person who comes in to talk with Jackson, making sure he is emotionally healthy and well.  I feel our family has been blessed with amazing strength through all of this. I do think overall Jackson is doing well, but I also want to make sure he is able to express his deep-down feelings to someone because he doesn't always like sharing them with us.

Both of our families have been amazing helping us through this.  We're very fortunate in that regard.  I feel a large part of this trial is learning to allow others to help us, but I am really struggling with how to make that happen.  I truly do spend time each day thinking about how someone might be able to help me, but I end up feeling a lot of stress by the end because I can't come up with anything!  That is why it is so wonderful when little "treats" show up at my door or random forms of service because I feel the love and it was something someone else thought to do.  Does that make sense?  We have learned a lot about service and supporting people in trials from so many who have done so much for us.  It is a priceless blessing.  Just last weekend some amazing individuals spent hours and hours putting on a garage sale fundraiser for our family (and another dear friend going through a similar trial) and it was so touching to see the time and thought put into us.   There are so many wonderfully kind-hearted people in this world!

These are some of the beautiful pictures our very talented friend, Mary Thompson, took for us about a month ago.  She captured our family beautifully.