Wednesday, September 28, 2011

a prayer for chloe

one of our dear friends from college,
a prayer.

becky and our friends from minneapolis
have supported us
from afar
in a weekly prayer group
in little hellos
and daily prayers.

please check out becky's poem
yet another celebration
of the Body of Christ
which surrounds
and enfolds us
in this journey.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

tangible reminder


He drew me up from a desolate pit,
out of the miry bog,
and set my feet upon a rock,
making my steps secure. Psalm 40:2

some neighbors and church friends
made some rocks for people
to take as a tangible reminder
to pray for chloe.

feel free to stop by our back porch,
take a rock,
and whenever the rock catches
your eye,
take a moment
to lift up chloe
in your heart
and in prayer.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Preschool Days

Chloe has 2 weeks at First Presbyterian Preschool under her belt. Today she had to go into the clinic at DeVos Children's Hospital, so she had to miss a day of preschool. Fortunately, thanks to a program called Monkey in My Chair , whose mission is to help pediatric cancer patients stay connected to their classmates, Chloe has a child-sized monkey who sits in a chair at preschool when Chloe is out due to a cancer related absence. Chloe has her own little monkey who goes with her to the hospital.


Before school started, Chloe and I took the monkey to school.




Here is the monkey with Chloe's teacher, Miss Megan. The monkey also sat at the snack table.


In addition to the monkey, another way for the Chloe's classmates to connect with her is through hats. Kendra, a fellow preschool mom, came up with the idea for all of the children to make hats. She found the hats and fabric paint and came in one morning to assist with the project. The hats are so cute. Now Chloe won't be the only one in her class with a hat.
We are so thankful for our friends and teachers at preschool!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

back to school

life is intense right now
two kids going back to school
two teachers going back to school
one kid going back to preschool.

and then there is cancer.

cancer means
weekly trips to grand rapids
vigilance
daily medications
worry.

with the return to school
it also means
entrusting chloe to someone else,
foisting the vigilance and worry
on other people.

i am thankful for our parents
for miss megan, chloe's teacher.
it is not easy to be the decision maker.
is she okay?
how is her energy level?
should i take her temperature?
where is her hat?
did she use sanitizer?

i am happy to be back at school part-time.
i have a great teaching partner
supportive colleagues
an amazing class.
it is a challenge that makes my brain work hard.

i know that it is good,
yet sometimes i struggle.
between the worry and vigilance,
the trips to grand rapids,
the papers to grade,
lessons to plan,
the astounding amount
of student information
to organize and record,
loving and attending to
my own children,

there really isn't much time left
to attend to myself
or my relationship with kip.

there is little enough time
amidst the worry and vigilance
to communicate the most essential details.

when and how do we
communicate our feelings,
our love for each other?

we just forge ahead.
we try hard to take a moment
to create a moment
to share our successes,
our failures,
our tears
and anger.

and pray for god's guidance to push us through.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Chloe's Day at the Clinic - The Movie

Many people have asked us what it is like for Chloe to go to the clinic at the DeVos Children's Hospital to get her chemotherapy treatments.  We've talked about putting together a movie for a while, but now have finally done it.

Here's a 4 minutes and 45 seconds glimpse into our eight hour day yesterday.