Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The Men in My Life (a very long post)



Today I am more grateful for my husband and my own father than I ever have been.  And I would be totally remiss if I didn't add my father in-law, too.  Both my father and Erik's father taught us how to be husband/wife and have set such a great Christian example for us to follow.  Erik's father has given up his own life this past 18 months to raise my children.  He walked away from his life in retirement, never looking back, with the responsibility of making sure that Ella and Jack kept as much "normal" in their lives as possible.  My own father has held my hand, kept my spirits lifted and provided much needed compassion when I was at my lowest.  He has helped me keep my eyes looking upward when I was at my lowest.  Most importantly, he has stepped up his involvement at work to make sure that Erik was able to spend as much time with me and Lucy as possible.

And today, I am so grateful for the wonderful husband that I have been blessed with.  I could not imagine living my life without him.  I especially could not imagine going through this sometimes insurmountable trial without him as my help mate.  We are partners.  We are true mates.

It was September 1995 when we first met.  We were at a meet and greet for the Leadership Scholarship that we both were awarded at the University of Memphis.  In a cheesy little "get-to-know-you" game I found my husband.  I was mesmerized immediately.  I left that night, hardly knowing his name, and called my Mom to tell her that I met my husband.  It was November 2009 until I ever really spoke to him again.  Up until that point I would see him walking on campus and my heart would literally skip a beat.  Our first date was the 1995 U of M Homecoming football game.  Pretty much after that we were inseparable.  We dated almost 5 years until June 24, 2000 when we were married.  I can honestly say that I am the luckiest woman in the world.  I absolutely LOVE my husband.  I still get butterflies in my tummy when he holds my hand and when he kisses me.  Sometimes I feel like a school girl again in his arms.

And in case you ever wondered, he is the most amazing father I could have ever hoped for for my children.   My children adore him and he is so attentive to their needs.  I have already begun to pray that my girls will marry someone as wonderful as their daddy and I pray that Jack will learn so much from him, too. 


His love for our family has been made evident (if there ever was any doubt) since Lucy got sick last year.  He has made it his life's mission to keep our family together.  His words exactly: "cancer might have taken my daughter's health, but it is not going to take our family."  How can you not love a man with that much devotion and determination.  


I wanted to share with you something he wrote a while ago.  I debated whether or not to ever publish it.  After all we have been through the past 15 days I asked for his permission and he agreed.  I want my children to read this one day and understand how much their father loved them.  While the topic is Lucy, I think his love for his whole family is transparent through his words.  







March 9, 2012
  
It kind of caught me off guard this week when I saw the pictures of Lucy that had recently been done. I knew Kate had taken her for pictures, but I didn’t really know any thing about it.  But the one where Lucy is holding the Hope sign will always mean something more to me. Because a year ago today I truly learned what hope is.

A year ago today I was at the hospital alone with Lucy.  It was just 2 weeks after her first diagnosis and surgery to remove the largest tumors in her back and spine.  I had finally talked Kate into going home for a night and spending some time with Ella and Jack as well as to get some things from home for her and Lucy to feel more comfortable in the Hospital.

We had an ok night.  The day before had been good, but overnight Lucy had some significant pain episodes. Lucy’s Neurosurgeon came in by 6am, like he did on every morning we were in the hospital.  I had something on my mind that I had been wrestling with for a few days.  We had never been given Lucy’s pathology reports.  We were told before surgery that they would biopsy her tumors and we would know the type of cancer within a few days.  Well it was now 2 weeks later.  Of course I was starting to over analyze the situation. Many of you know I had previously worked at St. Jude for about seven years. My lab had worked on pediatric tumors. I had even done some studies with medullo. I knew the score.

We knew she had medulloblastoma, but we didn’t know the subtype.  There is a wide variety of outcome based on the subtype. Well I had noticed that one of our favorite nurses hadn’t come to see us in several days. So I start to think the worst. But I was afraid to say anything to anyone, especially Kate. But since I was there alone, when the surgeon came in, I just asked him. I caught him off guard, he looked down first. Then his words confirmed what I already knew. The initial path report said she had the worst kind.  Basically all who have this type of cancer eventually succumb to the disease.

He quickly leaves. And it is just me and Lu. I feel like I was just hit by a truck.  It is the most desperate and lonely feeling.  My words can’t convey what that felt like.  I had no hope.

Lucy slept fairly late.  So I had a few hours alone with my thoughts with her right next to me. I prayed like never before.  Begging God for a miracle.  Like Jacob, I was wrestling with God.  I cannot admit here many of the thoughts that I had that morning. But I was in a state of panic and desperation. And mostly just pain.  Pain for Lucy. That she would never get a chance at life.  That she would miss out on so much.  How this could impact or even destroy my whole family.  I begged, pleaded and negotiated with God like this until Lucy woke up.

When Lucy woke up she was different.  She was in more pain the ever before.  She had been so sore from surgery that we were having to make her turn her head a ¼ turn every few hours so her muscles wouldn’t stiffen up. Well this morning, Lucy would just flip around in bed.  Literally turning somersaults. Something was going on. She was in agony. We had the lights off and the windows covered, Lucy couldn’t stand light,

The quietness of the morning was quickly turning into hell.  She was in excruciating pain.  Nothing would calm her.  She was on pain medicine. Nothing helped. Morphine was useless.

She was screaming and flailing. She couldn’t talk or communicate. I began to change my prayers from the morning.  I started to ask God to just take her.  Don’t draw this out God, if you want her, take her now.  I prayed those words maybe a thousand times.  From about 11 to 12 that day Lucy was dealing with more pain than anyone can imagine. It was like she was being electrocuted. She had no control of her muscles. Her whole body would spasm. One episode caught me in the middle of begging God to take her. It was by far her sickest most painful moment of the last year. I believed at that moment that God was taking me up on my prayer.  All I could do was hold her hand. One of the nurses had come in the room. She held one hand and I held Lucy’s’ other. Occasionally we would look up from across the hospital bed and catch each others eyes. I knew she was emotional too. I will forever have her face etched in my mind.  She was doing her job. I was glad she was there to help me and Lu through this.  She may never know how much she meant to me.  She was my Angel for that hour. Thank God for good nurses who genuinely care.

Finally a Nurse practitioner came in and recommended Valium. In about 30 minutes that worked.

Kate called a couple times during the day.  I desperately wanted her to get to the hospital.  But I couldn’t share this news over the phone.  So I decided to wait.

Lucy drifted in and out of consciousness for the next few ours.  A hospital volunteer brought a dog by the room and Lucy did get out of bed to pet it.  After that she laid in my lap. Just me and her. I was still praying, but by this point I was just numb. I was almost paralyzed with hopelessness. My phone rang a few times. Lots of friends left text messages.  I couldn’t respond to any of them. Josh Pastner called and left a message. The Tigers were getting ready for the CUSA tournament that day. Just like they are today. The outside world hadn’t stopped like my world had. Nobody knew what I knew.

When Kate got to the room around 2, I couldn’t bring myself to tell her right away.  I wanted to let her have a few moments with Lu first. I’m pretty sure she saw right through me.  She came around the bed and sat by me on the chair and asked what was wrong.  I told her. And then we balled our eyes out together. I’m not sure I cried all day until that moment. We walked out of the room and left Kate’s mom to sit with Lu.  We just stood in the hall and held each other and cried. People walked by and we never looked up. 

The neurosurgeon and his assistant called us into the office to discuss and try to comfort us.  But Kate and I both knew the truth. Our baby had no hope of growing up.  Neither one of us liked the idea of putting her through chemo and radiation if there was no hope.

By the time we got back to the room it was well after 3.  I don’t remember talking after that. We just stood around Lucy’s bed in disbelief.  For the next hour or so we were in total despair. Hopeless.

Kate’s dad came up to the room sometime during this hour, but I’m not sure when.  But the four of us stood around the hospital bed and just looked down at Lucy. One of the nurses came in and I’m not sure what she asked, but Kate reached down to Lucy and touched her pillow. It was wet. Lucy is leaking spinal fluid out of the back of her head. I think it is about 4:30.  Nurses rush in and we all quickly realize that Lucy will be having emergency surgery. I decide right then that God has answered my prayer.  He is going to take her on the operating table. I absolutely knew it to the core of my soul.

Once the decision for surgery is made, the four of us stand around the bed and say some prayers preparing for the surgery. It is now about 5:30. I just remember it being so dark in the room.  The window shade never got opened all day long.  We couldn’t turn the lights on.  The sun was setting or had set outside.  It was just dark.  And for me quite hopeless.

I should tell you now that almost every day around 5:45, the food service called to remind us that we hadn’t ordered dinner yet. Lucy wasn’t eating anyway. And truthfully neither were Kate or I.

Well the phone rings. It is on my side of the bed. I pick it up and slam it down. I was frustrated. Didn’t they know what we were going through? Of course they didn’t.  I was telling my precious daughter good bye.

The phone rings again.  Nancy grabs it first and answers.  It’s the neurosurgeon’s assistant.  I really didn’t want to talk to her either.  Kate and I were thinking about hospice. They encouraged treatment.  I didn’t want to fight with her about it anymore on this day. I reluctantly take the phone. She says she wants me to talk to the Dr. from St. Jude and quickly puts her on the line.  I don’t want to talk to her either. 

She says that the final and more thorough pathology report came in.  The initial path report was incorrect. Lucy did not have the worst kind of Medulloblastoma. There was hope. Lucy had hope.

I know that the Doctor was still talking. But I don’t know what else she said. I was crying like I have never before or since. What had been the worst, most grueling day of my life just took a 180 degree swing.

Lucy still has a nasty cancer. But we now have a fighting chance of beating it. I was overjoyed. But emotionally spent.  I couldn’t control it anymore.  I wept for over an hour.

Of course like everything else in our journey, there was no time to sit around and contemplate. They came to get Lucy for surgery. It was her second one since her major surgery to remove the largest tumors. The surgeon needed put in a spinal drain to relieve the pressure in her brain and spinal column.  It was the pressure that was causing her pain earlier in the day. Her nerve endings had been misfiring all day long.  She had post operative meningitis.

We went with Lucy downstairs.  Her surgeon grabbed me and hugged me.  I swear I saw him tear up. It was an incredible moment.  He handed me a copy of the pathology report and said to frame it. Surgery went well. And the day closed with a hopefulness that has stayed with us ever since.


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97 comments:

  1. hi lil one's what a good picture, i'm so happy for all of you...woohoo

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  2. Lucy and Ella and Jack are so blessed to have a dad like Erik. I'm praying for many more joyful times for all of them with he and you.

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  3. this is so beautiful and I am sitting in tears reading this! What a wonderful story of hope and faith and strength and grace and mercy. Beautiful. Praying for Lucy!!

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  4. Wow......just WOW! I could feel the pain and despair in that like it was happening to ME. I just cannot imagine the emotional roller coasters you guys have been on. I don't see how you can just keep going and going like you do. Wait, yes I do know. GOD is giving you the strength you need. Still praying for all of you! MUCH MUCH LOVE!

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  5. Praise the Lord for godly men praying and guiding their families! I pray that hope Eric felt that day continues..Lucy has hope! Our Father in Heaven hears all of our pleas for your sweet little Lu!! Praise to our Lord and all glory and honor be given to HIM who sits on the throne!

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  6. Thank you for sharing this! Sending continued prayers and definitely holding on to hope and Gods healing powers!

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  7. i have been reading your blog since before the beginning of this journey with Lucy, but I have never commented, but I could not help myself today, that was the most heart touching post I have ever read!!!!! i can not possibly imagine what you all are going through, I pray for you all everyday and pray for a healing touch to be placed upon Lucy. Right now I am praying for strength for you and Erik. God Bless you all!!

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  8. Your family is the most selfless family I've ever "known". How you go through this and share such personal details with the rest of the world....please thank your husband for sharing this with us, I'm going to get off the computer now and not clean anymore today and just play with my kids and pray for Lucy and your family. I'm still shaking from reading this post!

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  9. Amazing! Thanks for sharing that with us!! What a awesome father & husband!!!! Im so glad Lucy is doing better! Beautiful picture! :)

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  10. Gina SzczodrowskiJune 20, 2012 at 1:52 PM

    I found your blog through another blog I read and am praying each and every day for the miracle that your family deserves. Lucy and your entire family are just beautiful and I have hope for that little girl's miracle to come!

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  11. Kate, you are a very blessed woman. Thank you for sharing this with us, I am just crying as I read it. Erik, thank you for giving the go ahead to share. :) No matter the outcome that people give us, we always have hope in God's Word. God's Word is true and if He says there is always hope then there always will be.

    Praying and praying for NED for life!!

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  12. Wow - that was a very powerful letter from Erik. I pray that this hopefulness may stay with you forever.

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  13. bawling.

    love the picture ... so sweet.

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  14. You both define what it means to say "I do" at the alter, especially when referring to "in sickness & in health." God speed to your amazingly strong & courageous family ... continued prayers to all of you! Lucy = Hope!!!

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  15. I literally got goose bumps reading this post. Such honesty is rarely shown by men, but Kate you have a rare one. I've prayed daily for all your family and I have to be honest when I read your post that Lucy's cancer was back I was in a pure state of shock. Then I prayed, then there was peace. None of us know the path God has laid for us, but I know that we must truly believe and have hope because he is in control. Your faith in God has truly been a blessing and inspiration to me and even on my worst days, I know my worst days are nothing compared to yours. Thank you for this blog and for showing others the Love of Christ thru it all. We offer up prayers for you daily and await the daily news updates.

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  16. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and story and Erik's writings as well. I have read all yours posts and have been emotionally touched by everything. I have to say, though that his raw emotion hit me and brought tears to my eyes. You both are wonderful people to share these personal things with all of us.

    Thank you again for sharing your story and the highs and lows.

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  17. That's just so powerful! Amazing. I'm praying for sweet Lucy EVERYDAY! God bless!

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  18. Even though you are going through so many "hard times" God has blessed your family to be there for each other , unconditionally. You are always in our prayers.

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  19. Thank you so much, Kate and Erik, for sharing that beautiful letter with us. The words will not come to me now but it is just so powerful and inspiring. Lucy and your whole family are in my thoughts so often...I too am praying for another miracle.

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  20. There are no words other than I'm praying for a miracle for beautiful Lucy and peace and hope for all of your family!

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  21. HOPE. Such a small word, 4 letters, yet they have such an impact. Without it there is nothing! It has gotten you this far in all your decisions for Lucy and I believe it will get her through to a permanent remission of her cancer!

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  22. Thank you for sharing that with us.....I've been checking your blog everyday....amazed at Lucy's progress.......praying for a miracle for you and with you.

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  23. What a moving letter. Thank you both for sharing the feelings of a tender, loving husband and father who was so heartbroken. Erik is truly a Godly man who loves his family so much. God is so obviously holding your family close, and He is once again showing those of us who read your blog how powerful and loving our God is. One day Lucy will have an opportunity to read this letter that her Daddy wrote about his precious daughter and her fight for life. I still pray daily for her fight to live, and my Hope in Jesus is that he does allow her to live. What an amazing testamony she will have to share with others. I know God has a plan for her life. Love to all who love a little girl named Lucy! Pat Williams, a grandmother in Tuscaloosa

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  24. What Cancer Cannot Do
    Author: Unknown

    Cancer is so limited...
    It cannot cripple love.
    It cannot shatter hope.
    It cannot corrode faith.
    It cannot eat away peace.
    It cannot destroy confidence.
    It cannot kill friendship.
    It cannot shut out memories.
    It cannot silence courage.
    It cannot reduce eternal life.
    It cannot quench the Spirit.

    Saw this years ago, and remembered it after reading this post. Your family is proof this is true.

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  25. I am in tears and unsure of what to say. "Sorry you all have to go through such horrible times" is what comes to mind, but doesn't sound like enough to say. So happy you have hope now!!! I think all five of you will have special places in Heaven one day - and I pray it's 70 years from now!
    Thank you for sharing. And God bless you all, Kelley

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  26. Oh Kate, thank you for sharing your family's experiences and being honest. I am sitting here with tears streaming down my face and the only thing I can think is how awesome our God is. He brought hope in your darkest moment. Still praying for Lucy and everyone, not a day goes by that I am not thinking of her and the family. (((HUGS))) and prayers to you all!

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  27. WOW... that's all I can say! WOW!!!!

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  28. Amazing.........simply amazing!!! What else can I say? Hold onto that HOPE!!!

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  29. Thank you for sharing Lucy's miracle.

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  30. Kate, God knew from the very beginning that you would need a strong husband and father for your children like Erik. I'm so glad that you are going through this journey with someone like him. Thank you, Erik, for sharing such a personal letter with us. I believe each person who reads it can see what a man of God you are and how very much you love your family. Praying without ceasing for sweet Lucy's healing.

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  31. As I finished reading this I have tears running down my face. You see, I have a teenage son that has rebelled against his father and I and I have felt so hopeless these past few months. After reading your miracle, I have hope that the God of the universe will grant me the desire of my heart and restore him to us. Thank you for sharing your story, God has touched me through it.

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  32. I keep thinking of the words in the song (you introduced me to) Thou O Lord... the lifter of my head. He continues to keep lifting your head, lifting Erik 's head, and over and over again he lifts sweet Lucy's head... Our God 's love is amazing indeed...

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  33. HOPE IS AMAZING! Love your post.

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  34. Thank you Kate so much for sharing this. Your family has witnessed several miracles and I believe with all my heart by your husband praying to God that it was HE who changed the report. I still have goosebumps just thinking about what your husband wrote. What a testimony to give to someone in need of God's love. Thank you again.....We continue to pray for that sweet Lucy and your family. Thank you for taking the time to post :)

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  35. Melodyshulse1009June 20, 2012 at 4:04 PM

    In tears. What a heart-wrenching road to hope. I'm so happy your family has such an incredible bond of love and support to get you through all this. I continue to pray for hope and God's miraculous hand on Lucy.

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  36. SingletonabigailJune 20, 2012 at 4:13 PM

    hope she get well soon and that store made me what to cry

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  37. WOW!! Miracle after Miracle!! Erik is an awesome dad and God heard is prayers that day and He answered. This story really moved me. Continually praying for Lucy and your family!!
    GO LUCY GO!!!

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  38. WOW - so POWERFUL & RAW!! I so remember that day Kate but you told us after the fact. Erik is an amazing daddy. All your kids are lucky to call both of you - Mama & Daddy!! Thanks for sharing. I'm glad you have each other. You're both the BEST!!! xoxo

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  39. Such a beautiful story. Not beautiful in the sense of Lucy almost passing but beautiful in the sense of HOPE. Never give up on HOPE. LUCY. HOPE. Four letters a piece. Coincidence? I think not!
    Still praying....

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  40. Elaine Butler, Chattanooga, TNJune 20, 2012 at 5:41 PM

    Erik and Kate, this story went from totally heart wrenching to totally inspiring!! You both are wonderful parents with a long road ahead of you. It's very obvious where your faith and trust lies. I pray for your precious little Lucy every day!! Our God is an awesome God, He reigns from heaven above, with wisdom, power and love. Our God is an awesome God!!!

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  41. Amazingly written....very powerful! You are such an inspiring family and thank you for sharing your very personal story with us! Tears streaming here in Virginia..

    Annie

    Go Lucy Go!

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  42. H.O.P.E. - Hold Onto Prayer Everyday... God will make a way. Isaiah 43:19

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  43. So very refreshing to know there are still very functional marriages out there full of love and respect. I pray for you daily and am still holding out for the ultimate miracle for Lucy.

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  44. God knew when he put you two together! Thanks for sharing your life.

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  45. Kate, thank you for posting your post and for Erik to allow you to post what he wrote. I am so thankful that God is still working in Lucy's life and continue to pray that he will do so. My 8 year old little girl has been so concerned with Lucy and has cried many of times when she has thought about what Lucy is going through. I cry with her at the thought of what you all were being faced with. My mother was diagnosed with Cancer last year three days after my birthday of which was extremely hard but we have made it through it and are in remission. I am still praying that God's will be done in sweet little Lucy's life along with the rest of the family!

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  46. I am speechless. I'm only trying to respond because something so beautiful deserves a standing ovation; and in blogland, we can only do that with a comment!

    Parenting, the highest of highs, the lowest of lows. Creating in us the true feeling that we would do anyting, ANYTHING, on behalf of that child. True selflessness, where you care nothing for your own needs. Thus is the lot of the mother and father.

    So, as exceptional as Lucy is, I see where she gets that grit, and determination, and grace! Well from her momma! And from her daddy! Of course!

    Bravo, both of you. What a treasure you have created.

    Hope. Keep it up. That's the truest, rarest gift you can give her now. And, its the gift that she returns to everyone around her, and to all of us, so distant.

    Faith, hope and love, these three.

    Still praying for all of you,
    Tonia



    Tonia

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  47. God bless you Erik & Kate. This is a beautiful post, thank you for sharing. I love the picture of Erik with the kids - Lucy looks great! Continuing to pray from Michigan!

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  48. Wow, talk about turning on the water works. Tears are streaming down my face as I write this. Erik and Kate you both are incredible people. Incredible parents. Incredible spouses. Things like this rip families apart all the time, and the devotion you both show for your family. Its a shame more people don't respect their families in the way that the two of you do. Kate make sure you tell Erik thank you for letting you share his letter with us. We will continue to pray for your family mulitple times a day, every day. With love from Idaho.

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  49. I know how you feel about your husband. I feel the same about mine:) When you marry your best friend life together is incredible. It doesn't mean you won't have problems, but it means you have someone to help you face the bad times, and celebrate the good ones. I cried like everyone else while reading Eric's story. And the picture at the top of the post is beautiful. Jack is getting so big!! We continue to pray for your entire family-including both of your parents and all the people who help you get through each day. Thank you for sharing with us strangers.

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  50. Reading this... I felt like I was there in that dark room, just looking at Lucy, watching Erik hold her hand and praying over her. Even though I cannot imagine the hell you guys were going through. Erik's words are so powerful, honest and pure! Thanks you for sharing this. Hope is an amazing thing and we do serve an awesome God! I love seeing Lucy with her sister and brother... such a great picture! Hoping and praying for more miracles!! Hugs!!!

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  51. Amazing story and what a great testimony your family has , God can certainly do any thing,and answering prayer is one I have seen Him do over and over again,He has been so faithful in bringing you through this raging storm in your life, and He will carry you all the way, just trust in Him.

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  52. I am praying very hard for healing of this most beautiful child of yours! And of courses the rest of your amazing family! I found you through Texas Bloggers...someone there wrote a post on their blog about Lucy....and I had to find you! Blessings, Healing and Hope!
    Tif
    Ramblings of a Southern Bell
    http://www.her-southern-ramblings.blogspot.com

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  53. All I can say is thank you God. You have Lucy here on earth and You are are still using her here. I pray for complete healing and I pray we will all see Lucy overcome this!! Lucy has one heck of a testimony and I strongly believe through that God will speak to others through her. Kate, I love reading your blog everyday. You have a beautiful way with words and I am so inspired to be a loving and caring mother and wife.

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  54. Erik and Kate,
    I am in awe and praising God daily for Lucy and your entire family. I am checking my computer daily so that I know how to specifically for you guys. My family and I pray for your sweet baby and her siblings without ceasing all through the day.
    We are so enjoying watching God work in your lives and the life of your precious one. His miracles are obvious .
    We are praying for strength for both of you. Thank you for taking your time to continue to update us and letting us be a part of your lives.

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  55. Your family is so very blessed. Even in this time of hardship the blessings show through. I think about Little Lucy every single day. Go Lucy Go!!!

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  56. Thank you for sharing. I think of you and your family every day, hoping for a miracle and for love to lift your spirits

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  57. I read this post this afternoon at work during my lunch break. Oh, boy I was so close to tears and had to keep the emotions at bay. What a sweet, wonderful, lovely man you have, Kate. Erik is a great guy, rare to see a man bare honest emotions. He is one strong man and you are very lucky. I have been married 26 years and have had to be the strong one during difficult times. You have a great guy ! I am hoping the best for all of you, despite never meeting you or your family I truly care for Lucy, Ella and Jack. Having only boys I know THAT look in Jack's eyes, little devils they are. I will be hoping and praying for more miracles to come your way. Be sure to tell Erik I think he is one great man !

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  58. God is good! He is the ultimate physician. Praying Lucy continues to feel better :)

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  59. Juaacklyn CunninghamJune 20, 2012 at 10:10 PM

    Still praying for your family.

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  60. Against all hope, in HOPE I believe...Romoqns 4:18

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  61. The most beautiful post I've ever read.....

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  62. WOW!!! Sounds like you have an amazing family! They have taught you both well. And it continues in your children! Miracles are evident as is your faith and hope! Praying ceaselessly! Never have I met your family but I feel I know you well. Thank you for sharing your life. GO KRULL'S GO! It's not just Lucy's fight ! Love you all!

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  63. Just checking in and wishing you all the best of luck. Don't lose hope!

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  64. Amazing, truly amazing! I can just feel Erik's love for Lucy and his family. There is nothing like our Father's love or a father's love. How wonderful your family is. Thank you for sharing your worst and best moments with us. Lucy is in my thoughts and prayers every day. I keep wondering how I can love someone I've never met and you keep posting reasons why I can. God is so good.

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  65. "Our God is so big, so strong and so mighty. There's nothing my God cannot do!" Praying.

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  66. Wow - What powerful writing by your husband. I agree - the love for his entire is evident in this note. God's healing as well. How Great is Our God!

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  67. Every post I read moves me more than the last. Gosh, what a way with words you both have. Such raw emotion put on paper is just amazing. And such a wonderful way to capture your lives so your children can someday read. I know this is for them, but thank you so much for sharing with us. I hope you have some idea what it means to us to go thru the ups and downs with your family. And might I add, what a beautiful family. Ella, Jack and Lucy, I HOPE that when you are reading this many years from now, that you are all loved by so many. And I HOPE that during that time, the bad memories of this time will all have faded. GO LUCY, GO ELLA, GO JACK. Prayers everyday for you all..

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  68. Sorry, my fingers got away from me.. I HOPE you ALWAYS KNOW that you are loved by so many.. :)

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  69. that is absolutely beautiful-

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  70. Amazing!!! Praying for you all!

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  71. Speechless! What a special thing to share, you guys, and what a special, HOPEFUL, journey you have all been on!

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  72. Once again, your family amazes me. Such love for one another. Thank you for sharing such a personal post.

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  73. Dear Kate,
    I sit here with tears in my eyes after reading this incredible story written by your dear husband. What a heart wrenching story he has told and yet it shows the love that he has for all of you so well. I am so glad that you have a husband that loves you so much and that your children have a father that loves them unconditionally. I am a mom to three children and a foster mom currently to two children...my husband and I have been foster parents for 7 years and every day we see children who have not felt this love that your children feel every day. Lucy, Ella and Jack are so blessed to have you and Erik as their parents...their lives are so rich and full because of your love and your faith in God. They will always have hope because of you both. You are amazing people and even more amazing to share your story with us. Thank you for sharing and know that your "friends in NJ" will always pray for each one of you. Hugs to you all...Lisa

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  74. I cried through the entire recap from Erik. Unbelievable pain, and unbelievable love. I saw a quote in Job yesterday that made me (still makes me) think of your family every time - 'my joy in unrelenting pain'. I'm astounded by the courage, the spirit, and the journey. I don't really know how, not knowing you guys in person, your story can live so fully, so real through so many people, but we live Lucy's fight through you. I pray for your daughter as I would for my own. It's a road no parent wants to walk on, but know yours is lined up with thousands of people to whom Lucy's life, and your family's hope, matters so very much. More than once I sat in my car bawling, pleading with God for your girl's comfort and healing. We love you.

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  75. If your story doesn't make people believe in the power of prayer, then I don't know what will. I am so hopeful for Lucy and her future! What a blessed and beautiful family. Through all the pain and suffering, you have clung to the Lord and remained strong through Him, despite the weakness that this illness has inflicted upon all of you. I pray for Lucy's continued recovery and that she never has to go through that kind of pain ever again. May she continue to inspire many others!

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  76. Thank you for sharing your heart and your life with us Kate and Erik.
    prayers and hugs

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  77. I have a lot I want to say to you.....when I feel able to express it. However, it is enough to say that this mother's heart is bleeding for you and your family. I pray for you each day, some days it's like de ja vue for me.

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  78. I have never met your family but I have been reading your blogs. I want you to know that there is hope and I am praying for Lucy and your family. Stay strong.

    Philippians 4:13
    "I can do all things through Him whi strengthens me."
    Please hold onto this verse. With God, anything is possible. Please don't give up. Have a great day an remember that God is with you through it all; even when it doesn't seem like it.

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  79. I know I dont know your family but I have been praying for Lucy and your family. I know the journey must be hard but remember Philippians 4:13- All things are possible through Him who strengthens me. Please hold onto that verse. God is on your side. In life, things happen that we don't understand, but God has a purpose for everything. Please hold on to hope and remember that God is able.
    Praying for y'all,
    Kelsey

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  80. Happy upcoming anniversary! I too married the most amazing husband on June 24, 2000. Since then we have had 4 beautiful children and he has proven to be the father to them that I could only dream of. WE ARE BLESSED for such great men! My family is praying for you and holding you all in our hearts. -From Oregon, Andrea

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  81. For me, the picture of Lucy holding the 'hope' sign says it all....there is always hope...even when we don't think there is. Thank you for sharing Erik's words...and thanks to him for allowing you to do so. I remember your blog post after you found out there *was* hope...such a day for thanksgiving and celebration. Doesn't make this journey any easier on most days, I wouldn't think. But I am thanking God for your family and that you have one another. The men in your life are tremendous and I am sooooo thankful that you have them, Kate!!!

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  82. I have never met your family, but I have been following along Lucy's journey for months. This post left me in tears. Please know so many people pray daily for Lucy.

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  83. That was really beautiful! You are lucky Kate! Still praying!

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  84. Praying, praying and praying for you, precious Lucy and your family. We read your blog daily and offer up prayers to our great healer. What a sweet letter from Erik. You both are so blessed to have each other. Love to you all, Julie and Bob Gerken

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  85. Wow .. what an awesome testimony of your husbands heart. That is gut wrenching and inspiring at the same time. I can't even imagine the agony that y'all have been through in the waiting. THe little bit of waiting I did when the Lord was healing my granddaughter, Mercie, pales in comparison. But I know that we have HOPE through our precious Lord. He hears our cry. He responds to our cry. He truly cares about what we are going through. Praying praying praying....

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  86. A gorgeous post. Thank you, Erik, for letting us in to that moment. Those moments. So scary beyond my human understanding. You all are Mighty Warriors.

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  87. God working behind the scenes, amazing story. Lucy is so blessed to have such a wonderful family, and you also have an amazing Lil Lucy.

    Love and Prayers from KY

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  88. "Cancer (or ______) might have taken my daughter's health (or ___________) but it will not take our family." Now I know where your family gets their strength. Go Krulls Go!

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  89. Thank-you for sharing such a special intimate story with us. It is not just Lucy's bravery and special spirit that you share with us but the strength and love of every member of your extended family. It shows us all the importance of giving each other support and kindness. Lily. xxx

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  90. I just found your blog and wanted to tell you I will say prayers for you and your family. Your daughter is so beautiful and so strong, as are all of you. Take care and God bless. Your husband's words will be with me for a long time to come. xoxo

    ~ Wendy
    http://Crickleberrycottage.blogspot.com/

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  91. Holly RichardsonJune 22, 2012 at 8:31 AM

    Last year on the day that Robin, Melissa, Lisa and I came to LeBonheur to visit, you were out for a bit and we spoke with Erik. He shared this story with us and we all watched with tears in our eyes as he described the utter loss of hope he lived with throughout that day--then the unbelievable, unheard of chance that the phone call brought. I have since thought of that day so many times...times when your blog posts were filled with bad news, when things were seeming so bleak and my flesh would allow me to start feeling hope slip away. I would remember Erik's face that day as he told us of losing all hope and then having all hope restored in one day, and I would remember just how big our God is...and my hope and belief that He was in control and that He would bring Lucy through this would be restored, and I would pray with 100% confidence in that fact. I'm so glad everyone now can read his own recount of the feelings and emotions he--all of you--experienced that day. It was a miracle, and the events of the past two weeks are miracles, and I'm believing God for more miracles in this special child's life. Love you guys...thanks so much for sharing this.

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  92. Where are the tissues?? I have tears running down my face. If Erik was in front of me, I would have to hug him too. Thank you for sharing it with us. Lifting you and your family up in prayer.

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  93. I just found your blog a few weeks ago and have been following it and praying for your family. My 4 year old talks about Lucy in the hospital as if we know her. God has amazing ways of connecting all of us as his children.
    Thank you for sharing your story with such honesty and emotion! I walk away from your blog crying, prayerful and ever so thankful for every single moment God has entrusted me to raise my own precious blessings. We will continue to pray for His mighty healing!!

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  94. Wow, thank you for sharing and being so vulnerable. I sobbed at Eric's journal and the feeling I felt in my heart, trying to imagine the deep agony. Then to read the part where he gets the phone call, and the news that the results are not what thought initally, and there is "hope". To GOD be the glory! Thankyou Jesus! I watched too the video tonight of her, and continued to cry, and just feel in such awe of the Lord's miracle He is doing in Lucy. I know she has a long road ahead and there are so many unknowns, but she is here, and there is "hope". He loves her so much, more then any of us can imagine. He is here working in every detail. Even the smallest of faith as small as a mustard seed can grow into amazing things. God can do the impossible. Shame on the person who responded that you didn't have "faith" in the doctors. The Lord definitely uses them through their wisdom, etc.. but it is He who is the ultimate doctor. The ultimate physician. Your faith as a family is amazing, and a true testimony and light to all that read your blog. Thankyou for sharing. Our family continues to pray for Lucy, and all of you too during all the transitions in your new place. Our hope is in the Lord, the anchor of our soul, the One who holds us steadfast. I pray you feel encouraged and sustained in all this.

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