Here's the deal

On February 4, 2012 Wesley was in a skiing accident and broke his neck. He is 16 years old and is planning to graduate high school this year. There are not many 16 year old boys as amazing as he is. He is kind, thoughtful, and good date on his progress. I will make sure Wesley gets to read every comment this blog receives. My siblings and I will try to keep this blog current.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Eat More Chikin

Happy Tuesday Everyone.

I have some time to write today because I didn't go to work. I am a wimp. Ben and I went and got our adult vaccinations yesterday. He got six; I got five. I can barely move my stinkin' arms. Ben is a champ... he's at work. I actually really enjoy working. It's one of my favorite things to do here in Louisiana.

Well, Wesley had quite an amazing Monday. This post is brought to you by the letter 'W' and Chick-fil-a... Eat More Chikin. Oh yeah, and my dad. He's the one that gives me all the info. I will be directly quoting him a lot today because he has a way with words.


Monday started off rocky. Wesley had barely slept at all the previous night and felt terrible Monday morning. His stomach was upset. He was too sick to go to his morning therapy and could not keep any food or drink down. He was able to do one hour of 'easy' therapy. He spent a lot of time trying to rest. One of the highlights of the morning was to have our older brother, Dallin come visit him. He and my sister's husband, Nate, have been in Guatemala for the past two weeks on a medical humanitarian trip. It was fun for Wes to see Dallin. Dallin is one of those guys that can laugh at his own jokes, he's usually the only one laughing. He likes to make others happy and he loves his family so much. It made Wes happy to see Dallin.

My Dad writes, " I, the Dad, need to remember patience. Sometime I still run in a mode that I want to fix
everything and that mind over matter always works, even when experiences in my life have taught me differently. I have a tendency to outline the day and expect for that day to go just as I have planned it. I had it in my mind that Monday would be a very productive day for Wes and that much would be accomplished in therapy, especially since there were no workouts on Saturday or Sunday. I was a little anxiety driven because what I thought would happen, did not happen. It is good for me to have these types of days once in a while to teach me and remind me what really matters most. It also gives me time to reflect and thank Heavenly Father for our blessings.

Wes has made enormous strides and already many miracles have happened. Over the last 48 hours Wes has dealt with the most excruciating pain since his accident. He has asked for priesthood  blessings each day as he has dealt with these difficulties and instantly the blessings have brought relief in pain and mental anguish. Three different times in the last 48 hours Wes has asked me for a hug.   He says, "Dad will you hug me." Of course I will, you are still my little boy and I love it when you ask me to do this. I realize there is some fear in the unknown and yet I can only imagine what is going through his head. I don’t think his fear is based on what lies ahead of me in the future but in the here and now.

I feel compelled to share some of what I perceive is going through the mind of this 16 year old young man, who is wise beyond his years. Wes has always been a very modest and moral young man. He does not
watch R rated movies, if a TV show is to provocative he will turn the channel or TV off. Repeatedly I will start to watch something and he will tell me I don’t think you will like that show. It was kind of rough and I
had to turn it off. He treats young women with kindness and respect. To put it simply in a Latter-Day –Saint standard he is a priesthood holder and he honors his priesthood. With that understanding into his morals,
think how uncomfortable it is to have a nurse shower and bathe him or put a catheter in, or to have her clean him up after he has had a bowel movement. All of these things cause him sever stress and strain. He wishes
he could run and never look back. He has me put a wash rag over his head during these processes so mentally he can hide. I don’t share these things with you to embarrass Wes but to give you some insight into what all young people deal with who might find themselves in such difficult circumstances.

For Wes this is as debilitating mentally as his injuries are physically. He will come to live with these mental conditions for a while but they will get better. It is comforting for Wes to have both Karen and I near him during all of his care. There are still certain things that he still tries to protect Karen from but for me there is a
certain amount of comfort that comes, having me involved in almost all aspects of his care, even if it is to only hold the washrag over his face so he mentally can run and hide. During the last 48 hours they had to
remove his catheter because of the physical pain and suffering and yet there is even a blessing in this because it appears he is able to urinate on his own without the necessity of the catheter. This morning one of the
head nurses told us it was hard for her to believe he was doing this on his own so early in the process. The jury is still out on this but it appears that is the case. 

So even on difficult days if you are looking we are finding amazing miracles in this process. I think I am learning more from Wes’s opportunity than I ever imagined possible. It’s OK if things happen on the Lord’s time table and not mine. I never would have thought this early in the process he would have some control over his bladder. I am learning to work as hard as possible and be content in letting the Lord steer the ship. We are doing the right things, and the Lord is blessing us because of that righteousness and because of the 1000’s of prayers being offered daily in Wes’s behalf. Miracles have happened, Miracles are happening and Miracles will continue to happen in Wes’s life. It is a beautiful blessing that so many are united in prayer for our little boy.
(I’m sorry he really is not a little boy, but he is our little boy)."

Well my friends, Monday ended with quite the surprise. Jim and Penny, some fabulous family friends, helped to arrange a little get together in the hospital. They were able to reserve a family room in the hospital and told my Dad to bring Wesley in around six. My dad and Dallin wheeled Wes in and to his astonishment there was a cow in there... pets are allowed in the hospital, but Wes doesn't have a pet cow. The astonishment came because the cow was standing up on two legs and was wearing a shirt. Strange. They also saw a table set up full of food from Chick-fil-a, more food than they could even think of eating. The only people in my family that were not there was my little brother Trevor, and Ben and me. Jim and Penny were there, so were a few members of the staff from the Tatum and Cactus location in Phoenix.

Jim and Penny had told them about Wesley and about the blog. They have been following it and wanted to do something for Wes. They felt that they wanted to help Wesley feel better and so the owner, Lourdes
Hatten, had a staff member, Sylvia, and her team put together this amazing feast for Wesley. It was such a random, generous act of kindness that did more than they knew in lifting his spirits on such a down day.

They brought so much food that we were able to invite other young people who were in rehab in to eat and all of the nursing staff on the evening shift was able to come in and eat. There was still enough food left over
so that Wes could graze on his favorite food for the next couple of days. In Montana we do not have a Chick-Fil-A  and this was one thing that Wes really missed about our move from Arizona to Montana. We cannot thank Chick-Fil-A enough for their kindness. This is a company that is much like Wesley. They have integrity, they try to give back to the community and they are not open on Sunday. They believe that Sunday is a day to worship and spend with your family. Our hats are off to Chick-Fil-A, we will never forget this and will always be a fan, especially to the Phoenix location at Tatum and Cactus.

Dear Chick-fil-a at Tatum and Cactus,

Thank you so much for your kindness and generosity. Wesley's spirits were lifted more than you will ever know. As Wesley's sister, I am grateful for the smile you put on his face. I loved watching the videos my family took. I have watched them over and over today.

Thank you,
P.S. I know my family feels the same.

Now onto some pictures. I apologize, I forgot to turn some of these pictures before uploading them so you are going to have to tilt your head.

The Cow and the Children

Handmade card from the staff

My two sisters are going to kill me for saying this but just for your information the two little boys in this picture are, in fact, boys. Not girls. This is an aunt's petition for a hair cut.
 Wes and the Cow

The delicious table of food

Jim, Cow, Penny and Wes

group shot

My Dad wrote, "Tonight we met a few other courageous young women who are on the road to recovery and are extremely brave. They are overcoming all expectations. If you are ever compelled to see a side of life that is seldom seen come to a rehab center and spend some time with the champions who are accomplishing miracles every day.

You most likely will never see them on the basketball court or football field; they are waging battle quietly and courageously and their personal successes out number any achievements by the worlds best athletes. The athletes training in Rehab are the best of the best(everyone in rehab is an athlete that overcomes extraordinary odds everyday)."

In bible times there were prophets and apostles. Our church is that same church restored in latter days. We still have a prophet and apostles. We are uplifted by reading and studying what the prophets and apostles have told us.

My Dad wrote:

"A very dear friend of our after hearing about Wesley’s accident reminded us of a church talk we had heard last year. I would like to share with you a few passages from this talk. These thoughts are some of the principles we live by and help us look to the big picture.  We hope you find comfort in these thoughts like we do.
The talk was given in October 2011  and the title of the talk is “The Songs They Could Not Sing” by
Quentin L. Cook, an apostle.

Sometimes tragedies are very personal. A son or daughter dies early in life or falls victim to a devastating disease. A loving parent’s life is taken because of a thoughtless act or accident. Whenever tragedy occurs,
we mourn and strive to bear one another’s burdens. We lament the things that will not be accomplished and the songs that will not be sung.

Among the most frequently asked questions of Church leaders are, Why does a just God allow bad things to happen, especially to good people? Why are those who are righteous and in the Lord’s service not immune from such tragedies?

While we do not know all the answers, we do know important principles that allow us to face tragedies with faith and confidence that there is a bright future planned for each of us. Some of the most important principles are:
First, we have a Father in Heaven, who knows and loves us personally and understands our suffering perfectly.

Second, His Son, Jesus Christ, is our Savior and Redeemer, whose Atonement not only provides for salvation and exaltation but also will compensate for all the unfairness of life.

Third, the Father’s plan of happiness for His children includes not only a premortal and mortal life but also an eternal life as well, including a great and glorious reunion with those we have lost. All wrongs will be
righted, and we will see with perfect clarity and faultless perspective and understanding.

From the limited perspective of those who do not have knowledge, understanding, or faith in the Father’s plan—who look at the world only through the lens of mortality with its wars, violence, disease, and
evil—this life can seem depressing, chaotic, unfair, and meaningless. Church leaders have compared this perspective with someone walking into the middle of a three-act play. Those without knowledge of the Father’s plan do not understand what happened in the first act, or the premortal existence, and the purposes established there; nor do they understand the clarification and resolution that come in the third act, which is the glorious fulfillment of the Father’s plan.

Many do not appreciate that under His loving and comprehensive plan, those who appear to be disadvantaged through no fault of their own are not ultimately penalized.

However, righteousness, prayer, and faithfulness will not always result in happy endings in mortality. Many will experience severe trials. When this happens, the very act of having faith and seeking priesthood blessings is approved by God. The Lord has declared, “The elders … shall be called, and shall pray for and lay their hands upon them in my name; and if they die they shall die unto me, and if they live they shall live unto me.”

There are many kinds of challenges. Some give us necessary experiences. Adverse results in this mortal life are not evidence of lack of faith or of an imperfection in our Father in Heaven’s overall plan. The refiner’s fire is real, and qualities of character and righteousness that are forged in the furnace of affliction perfect and purify us and prepare us to meet God.

Some challenges result from the agency of others. Agency is essential for individual spiritual growth and development. Evil conduct is an element of agency. Captain Moroni explained this very important doctrine: “The Lord suffereth the righteous to be slain that his justice and judgment may come upon the wicked.” He made it clear that the righteous are not lost but “enter into the rest of the Lord their God.” The wicked will be held accountable for the atrocities they perpetrate.

Elder Marion D. Hanks said: “There is no chance, no fate, no destiny that can circumvent or hinder or control the firm resolve of a determined soul.”

He acknowledged that this doesn’t apply to all the challenges we encounter
but is true in spiritual matters.

A unique challenge for those who have lost loved ones is to avoid dwelling on the lost opportunities in this life. Often those who die early have demonstrated significant capabilities, interests, and talents. With our
limited understanding, we lament the things that will not be accomplished and the songs that will not be sung. This has been described as dying with your music still inside you. Music in this case is a metaphor for
unfulfilled potential of any kind. Sometimes people have made significant preparation but do not have the opportunity to perform in mortality.

When we look through the wide and clear lens of the gospel instead of the limited lens of mere mortal existence, we know of the great eternal reward promised by a loving Father in His plan. As the Apostle Paul taught, “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” A line from a beloved hymn provides comfort, solace, and the clear lens: “And Jesus listening can hear the songs I cannot sing.” The Savior said: “Therefore, let your hearts be comforted. … Be still and know that I am God.” We have His promise that we with our children will sing “songs of everlasting joy.”

As for Karen, Wesley, Myself and our Family we know these principles to be true. This understanding helps us through challenges and keeps us grounded and focused on what is most important during prosperous times. It motivates us to reach out to others during challenging times in their lives like all of you have reached out to us. Service to others brings out the very best in us and draws us closer to God. We thank all of you for your kindness to us.

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