Sunday, December 6, 2009

Grant's Pre-Thanksgiving post (sorry it's late!)

Give thanks to the Lord,
For he is good.
Give thanks to the Lord,
His love endures forever.

Over the past week, we've been having a tough time dealing with all of the painful memories from last year. Every day reminds us of the events that happened a year ago, the week before Thanksgiving. But this morning we woke up grateful. Tammy and I are grateful to be sleeping next to each other in our own bed. We're excited about going down to Fresno to be with family. Tammy spent a good chunk of yesterday cooking up a storm.
What are we grateful for?
We're grateful for God for helping Natalie get better. She had her 6th checkup and she is still in remission. Dr. Clay, her oncologist, said that 6 months is a big deal and he was happy that we made it.
We're grateful to be together as a family. Yes, the kids fight more than we like, but they fought a bit in the hospital, too. The point is, we are home together.
We're grateful for our family:
Mom and dad, thank you for coming as soon as we needed you and listening when I needed you to.
Troy, thank you for praying.
Ma, thank you for watching Sean and spending nights in the hospital. I know it was hard for you.
Ba, thank you for letting ma help us. We know it is a big sacrifice.
Tracy, thank you for giving us a whole month. You helped us through a tough spot. Sei, Cameron, and Ava, thank you for letting your wife and mom go.
Dinny and Jason, thank you for spending your vacation on us. We needed all the help we could get.
Scott, thank you for coming and for the Cinnabons.
John, thank you for staying with Ma and playing with Sean. We worried constantly about Natalie and frequently about Sean. We didn't want him to be neglected and bounced around from people to people and place to place. Keeping him home with family relieved a great
Natalie, thank you for being a trooper. You made the best of a terrible situation and you kept your spirit throughout the whole ordeal.
Sean, thank you for praying every night for Natalie. Thank you for vehemently reassuring your mom that Natalie is going to be all right.
Tammy, thank you for thinking of me even when there were so many other people and things to think about. You made me feel important.

Medical staff:
Dr. Clay, thank you for being sincere, honest, and optimistic.
Robin, thank you for the 2 minutes. If I had to pick my most positive healthcare experience ever, that would be it. We needed to know that someone would give us 2 minutes.
Dr. Matthay, thank you for your sense of humor.
Dr. Bannerjee, thank you for standing firm. We really wanted to go home, but you were right.
Amber, thank you for taking the initiative and cutting Natalie's hair. It hurt, but it needed to be done.
Felix, thank you for the candy.
Tatiana, thank you for the expert blood draws.
Nancy, thank you for always taking your time. You help us feel relaxed.
Dr. Smith, thank you for your youthful vigor and cheer.
Yolanda, thank you for all the elephant journeys, and especially for not being easily hurt. You'll make a great pediatrician.
Christine, thank you for teaching Natalie and Tammy to bead and for telling
us all the good restaurants around UCSF.

Weizhu and Patty, thank you for teaching Natalie the recorder.
Zach and Becky, thank you for coming and playing Pokemon sushi with us.
Elbert, Stella, Jonathan, and Elliot, thank you, thank you, thank you for letting us share your house and washing machine and kitchen. A huge piece of home.
Ray, thank you for coming.
Sam, thank you for aggressively listening.
DJ, thank you for helping us coordinate and clean our place.
Geno and Maritza, thank you for talking to us as a couple.
John and Michelle, you understood what it means to be in the hospital. Hospital socks were an extra special touch.
Scott, thank you for talking it out and giving me perspective about our suffering.
Margo, thank you for the CD and study. The CD can still make us cry.
Thank you for everyone who prayed for us, brought us meals, cleaned or decorated our house.
Juan, I still have your Pyrex dish. Thank you for being patient with us!
Gregory Gardens, thank you for the 100 rolls of tape, wonderful letters, and especially the origami crane mobile Natalie has it hanging in her room and we look at it every night.
Miss Danna, thank you for the special trips.
Lisa, thank you for watching out for us at school.
Terry and Art, thank you for the camera!
Mitel, thank you for the DS and games.
Thank you for all of you who donated blood.

There are so many other people we are grateful for and we apologize for not personally thanking everyone. We've thought about way more people than we have entered above, but we need to go to sleep so we can stay healthy.


Yolanda said...

I think I need to thank you! Thank you for letting me get to know Natalie and love on her and play with her. =) It's been such a wonderful time for me - both in my personal growth and in having fun =). You're parenting has taught me a lot and Natalie's resilience and joy has inspired me so much. So thank you Natalie too!!!!

Anonymous said...

Grant, Tammy, Natalie, and Sean,

Thank you for trusting me with Natalie and Sean. I will never forget the times that I spent with Natalie at the hospital; making dolls out of clay; painting t-shirts and trying to sell them to the hospital staff; and the numerous trips that Natalie sent me to the cafeteria because she needed butter for her science experiments.

Poor Sean, I feel bad that he was separated from his sister, mama, and papa. However, the lord managed to watch over him and blessed him with many talents!
I miss Natalie and Sean very much and hoping to see them soon!

With Love,
Auntie Tracy

Anonymous said...

I am a mom a an AML M5 chemo only survivor. I am happy to hear your daughter is doing great - Just want to send you a note that kids do get through this and do well - my baby is 5 and 1half years out from finishing treatment. He is happy, smart and loving life as a 2nd grader. I wish you all the best and a great new year!!
Jenny in Niagara Falls

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matt malmgren said...

Tim Crose referred me over to your blog and I'm happy to see your daughter is doing so well after going through such an ordeal. My 18mo daughter is undergoing Chemo currently for Whilms (kidney cancer)and its good to see there's some light at the end of a very dark tunnel.