Monday, April 14, 2014

The Gift of Life

We knew before we arrived at Texas Children's today that it was definitely time for another gift of life!

Caleb was in big need of another blood transfusion.  He has been very pale and hasn't felt like getting out of bed the past two days. 

Cal did not get his doctor's approval to play t-ball over the weekend, which ended up being a blessing in disguise - as he wouldn't have had the energy.  He says his legs are "just so tired". He was able to at least get pictures taken with his team yesterday, but he did ask us "How far will I have to walk from the car to get there?"  He made it & with a big smile on his face!  :)

As Caleb was opening some of his mail, he said, "Mommy, you should really blog about this." All-righty then... here we go!   :)  

This is a picture board that highlights one of the biggest distractors of cancer for everyone in our fam. 
Caleb wants you to meet "Little Al", a funny little lavendar pig, who is quite the adventurous soul and comes to visit us multiple times though the mail each week.  He has been very busy "competing" in "the Winter Olympics".

Cal loves Little Al's snow boots and all of his antics.
We never know what Little Al is going to do next! 
He's quite the downhill skier, as you can see.  :)
We were gravely concerned when Little Al had an unfortunate accident...

It was a big crash, but he survived this awful snowbank.
 ha ha. 
 This brilliant idea is all courtesy of one of David's long-time friends, Mike Bleier.  Caleb thinks he needs to write a book!  Thanks for the laughs, Mike.

Caleb also wants you to know how amazing his school is!  They have been sending him cards constantly since September... and EVERY SINGLE DAY the past 3 months, to help him get through the roughest rounds of chemo.

There are no words strong enough to thank Heather Mize for her efforts to mail these day-in & day-out and make sure they arrive on time.  I CANNOT imagine mailing something EVERY SINGLE DAY.  It's an incredible effort that has raised the spirits of our lil' man more than you could ever imagine. 
 Caleb has more amazing pen pals, who've been with him throughout this challenging time, and we'll try to introduce some of them in the days to come.

Speaking of September... it's hard to believe that seven months ago today, Caleb was diagnosed with leukemia.  (Though we knew the night before -the infamous Fri the 13th, it was probably cancer.)  

This was Cal, looking out his hospital room in September.  He had to be wondering - what in the world is going on?  Now he knows. Or perhaps he was just being a kid and thinking - wow, cool cars 9 floors below.  :)
  Our lives have changed so drastically since then.  Our social lives have come to a standstill.  We spend almost every spare second at home, mostly alone.  It probably sounds lonely, but honestly it hasn't been at all.  I can say we've had more happy days than sad ones.  I'll attribute that to the immense support from all of you, who read this blog & pray for us.

Caleb still struggles with his hair loss & studies this lil' guy, who is also a hairless cool dude. 

This is such a great learning tool for children. It's from an amazing young lady who encouraged toy makers to design these Bald & Beautiful dolls for young cancer patients or people with Trichotillomania, like her (which is the compulsive urge to pull out one's own hair). 
 I interviewed Chloe several years ago & never realized at the time how much she'd end up helping our family.  A special thanks to Chloe.  She has turned her struggles into a passion to help others.  I've learned so much from her.  Her story means more to me than ever before, because a few of the boys, who shaved their heads in Caleb's honor, are being made fun of, outside of school, from kids who don't know the meaning behind their bald heads.  It breaks our hearts.  If you ever have a chance, you can watch Chloe's & Emily's inspirational story from one of my newscasts:  

At the hospital today, we sandwiched Caleb between two special prayer blankets.  Every square inch & stitch was prayed over during the making of them.  They make Caleb feel very happy and safe & secure.  A special thanks to my cousin, Gerri & her church for one, and an amazing teacher at Cornerstone Christian Academy for the other.  Caleb's strong faith lets him know that God is helping take care of him, just as much as his loving nurses.

Caleb's nanny Nicole joined us for added support today.
 It's touching to see how much these blankets mean to this little boy.  He takes the prayers very seriously and wants to make sure he's "covered up in the prayers" each night.  The fact that Caleb's faith is so alive in his own little heart has been one of the biggest rewards in this cancer journey.  We may have never witnessed it so clearly, if he hadn't been diagnosed with cancer. 

His attitude reminds me of a song I used to sing in Sunday school when I was a little girl, "Hide it under a bushel - No!  I'm going to let it shine!"  

"You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house.  In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father."  Matthew 5:14-16

We're going to continue to let our lights shine & also shine the light on the amazing, caring people in our lives whose great deeds deserve it.


  1. Love y'all and always praying. Thank you so much for the updates!

  2. Prayers for your baby.

  3. Always thinking of Caleb and the family. May this holy week be a week of an abundance of the things that make Caleb happy. May he be uplifted with energy to be able to possibly play ball with his team. God listens, praying for Caleb.

  4. Prayers continue for Caleb and all of your family. My heart breaks for ya'll at times. Your courage and strength is so inspiring to all of us.
    Jim, Sandy, Kelsey and Lauren Thomas

  5. ~~~~~~~~~~~~LOVE~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Thank you for all the updates, Melissa!!
    Love, The Green's

  6. Sweet Caleb, I pray for you many times during the day, and I receive a blessing each time. God loves you and assures us you will get through this storm. I only wish I could take all the pain and suffering away from your little body, but I have the faith that God has a plan for your life, and this is part of your journey. I love you, Auntie Donna

  7. HAPPY EASTER CALEB AND FAMILY!! Because we serve a risen Savior, we have hope, we have peace, we have JESUS!!

    Always praying!!!