Thursday, July 9, 2009

Happy Birthday Jerad!

Today we celebrated Jerad's 37th birthday. He felt really great when Evan informed him that he was almost 40. Ally was not feeling like doing much again today, but I did get her to do a few things for her Daddy. We all made him a big chocolate chip cookie for his "birthday cake". He has asked for that every year since I have known him. Look at what a mess it makes when you let the kiddlings make the cake.
I also had her help wrap all of the presents and make her Daddy a card. I know it doesn't sound like much, but I push her all the time to try to do stuff. Otherwise, we end up with a day full of TV. I am thinking that she hasn't read a book since sometime mid-May, and that bothers me. We are in the process of getting her set up with an in-home instructor....our neighbor and friend who is also a retired school teacher, Judy Brower. Ally will get an hour of instruction for every day that she misses school. Which I don't know what the next six weeks will bring, but she does not seem ready to be able to handle a school day yet.

Our babysitter Jackie came and stayed with the kids tonight so that we could go out to eat with our friends for Jerad's birthday. What a treat that was for the both of us. Just to get out of the house is really a treat for me. I am feeling increasingly more trapped and like these walls are closing in on me. It is summer and I don't think I ever stepped outside all day until we went to dinner. That gets to me. The kids did fine for Jackie, which also made me really happy. We came back and had presents and cake. Here is proud Daddy with his three biggest fans... (and thank you Lisa Bauer for that Wisconsin hat for Ally, which Carly promptly stole)

And thank you Mr Booher for helping Ally to take her oral chemo medicine tonight. Every night we find a different way to get her to take it. Medicine taking is not so easy in this house. Lots of people have had their turn doing a shot of something out of a syringe with Ally. Brave Mr Booher wins the award for doing a syringe full of Fricker's Buffalo Wing Sauce tonight, without hesitation I might add.

Here's a little wish from me that the Barnetts get some sleep tonight. Last night did not see much rest in our house. Ally ended up crashing on our bed for the night. So I slept in Ally's twin bed. Jerad on the floor next to me. Evan woke up and was already getting upset about us going to the hospital so he ended up sleeping in the twin bed with me. Carly was the only one who spent the night in her own room. Weird. Not to mention that Jerad's parents called at 6:25 am!! to wish him a happy birthday. They get earlier and earlier every year. Note to Anne and John: Jerad said next year he will be unplugging the phone on the night of July 8th.

Tomorrow is treatment day. She gets another (another!) spinal tap....I think she has at least three more this month. They will also start her ARA-C chemo...this is just a push into her port and doesn't take very long. They will keep her accessed and we will have the home health care coming on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday for the daily chemo. I am thinking we may only be there a half day, but as soon as I say that she will need a bag of blood. Evan will be quite happy if we are home early though. He has really come to dread Fridays, poor little guy. For me, on the other hand, they end up being one of the easier days of the week because so many people are taking care of her. And the responsibility is not resting solely on my shoulders and weighing me down.

Please pray that Ally's doctors know exactly what to do to make our little girl better and with the most minimal of side effects. Please pray that God will take this disease away from us, never to return. Please pray that we all have the strength to climb this mountain and get to the other side, where normal days will await us.


  1. Ally...

    Praying...every time your name passes my lips a prayer...each time i think of you in a day a prayer...a prayer for your family...a prayer of hope...a prayer for strength...a prayer to stay on the sunnyside of the street...a prayer of gratitude that I am allowed to be a part of this army...a prayer that you all know how much you are loved...


  2. Terri Barnett ShumakerJuly 10, 2009 at 8:06 AM

    Happy Birthday Jared! I have tried 3 times to post this message this morning my computer is being so weird. I had better tell Miss Carly Happy Birthday now because with my intenet connection it may not get there until then!
    I wish that I had something very inspirational to say to help with all the down feelings that you having now but I can not think of anything magical to say.
    We think and pray for you all everyday and am hoping that brighter days are ahead.

  3. Janel, set aside a cyringe full of rocket fuel for me next time I am up there!

    As you approach yet another Friday of treatments, know that each time represents another step towards healing and ridding this from her body. Stay positive, set goals, stay active, and above all keep dreaming about a future full of success and happiness for Ally!

    "I like the dreams of the future better than the history of the past." - Patrick Henry

  4. Happy Birthday Jerad! Aint nothing wrong with being almost 40!! :) So glad you all were able to get out and celebrate. Praying for a good Friday.

  5. Hang in there you two! Bad days are ticking away and the more good ones are coming!! Happy Birthday Jerad. You two need some good times with friends. Glad you could do it!

  6. Praying . . .

    Not trying to be pain, but does anyone have an address where I can send a care package for Ally and the fam?

    queenbeedesigns (at) cox (dot) net

    Queen Bee Designs by Amanda

  7. Good Morning to all!

    Happy Birthday Jared almost 40 is nothing coming from an older woman who just turned 45. I think about you all everyday. Janell I was listening to the River this morning after Tara gave me this website and as I was reading your message the lady on the radio said " Remember your busy because your blessed" I realize things are very tough right now but just look at the wonderful family and friends that you have just waiting to help, pray or just listen. Praying you all of your daily. Love, Angie Buzzard PS give Ally a kiss and hug from all the Colombini's

  8. I ran across your blog today by accident. I sat here all morning and read the whole thing! Just reading your blog made me look at my 7 year old daughter in a different light. Ally is so brave. I live in Vandalia, not too far away from you. You can bet that I will be checking back and reading about her journey. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.

  9. Happy birthday to Jerad--glad you guys were able to get out for that. And way to go Mr. Booher on taking that syringe of buffalo sauce. If you ever need anybody else to take medicine with Ally, you know we're just across the street!

  10. Jerad--happy birthday, may you have at least 37 more and even more than that, now that is when you will be old?!?!?! glad dinner was good and Ally was able to help with the cookie and card. Sleep, what is it??? I see you are learning to sleep wherever and whenever, Good luck on Friday, my thoughts and prayers are with you every day, several times a day.

  11. Happy Birthday, Jerad! Hope today goes well for Ally....Janel, you can do this. I know you can. I started to write this yesterday, but then thought I was just being emotional in reaction to your very personal, scary post. So I stopped myself. Then today I was thinking the same thing, so here it goes. Please do everything you can to stop thinking about how other's treatments went or their disease progressed or stopped. Ally is Ally, and no one else is her. I had a dream last night of Ally as a mom, telling her kids about what a great mom you are and how strong she was when she was little and beat this thing called cancer. Really, I had that dream. And lately (I'm pregnant), my dreams have been pretty please take care of yourself.

    One less Friday.

  12. What a special birthday!! Even from far away we have a group here praying for and staying strong for Ally. You ARE going to climb all the way up the mountain and and just like in Rocky IV when he gets to the top and screams the big Russians name - - you can stand up there and say F U disease - - - we beat you - by a knockout!!!! That day WILL come!! (excuse me for making a cuss word reference but not sure something milder would suffice) :))) Sending prayers from Wilmington - - Jenny G