The best kiss I ever got

The best kiss I ever got

Monday, August 15, 2011

#27 Where do we go from here

Where do we go from here? I hadn't been without Brooklynn by my side since the day she was born. I didn't know what to do, I was almost in a panic. For almost 11 years we did everything together, when I ate..she ate, when I slept...she slept, everywhere I went she was with me and now I would have to learn to live without her....but how?
That day after they took Brooklynn so many came to pay their respects. It was so nice to have that comfort of people who cared and loved her so much plus we were not to thrilled with having to be alone. We were all looking at photos of Brooklynn and talking when I heard the phone ring. Someone looked at caller id and said, "oh no, it's Jeremy".( Jeremy was the little boy I mentioned earlier who was in love with Brooklynn). I told them not to answer because I didn't know how I would break the news to him of her passing, little did I know I didn't need to. The answering machine came on and there was his little voice, "Hi this is Jeremy...I know where my Brookie is...she is gone to heaven." No one had told him Brooklynn had passed away, it had only happened a couple of hours earlier but God had let him know and allowed him to somehow understand.
I got out some letters and read them from Brooklynns classmates to pass the time. The news soon came on and Brooklynn again had made the top story with her passing. It was then I began to realize that not only had she changed our life but she had changed a whole community's life.
Soon it started to get dark and people began to thin out. All I could think of was how can I sleep without her. So finally I grabbed my Bible, gripped it as tightly as possible and cried myself to sleep and thats how I slept..not just for one night but for weeks and months.
The next day we had to go make funeral arrangements. Pastor Mark and some friends and family went with us. We wanted her service to be at the church because that is where she served and she loved it there. We had a friend put together a video of pictures of Brooke and the song we picked out was "take your candle and go light your world.". At the end of the video I had him to insert this, "Brooklynn took her candle and light the whole world....now what will you do with yours?" I wanted people to know that if she could serve God in her physical condition so could they. We picked out her remembrance cards and had candles placed on the front of them.
Now it was time for the hard part..the casket. I remember them opening that door and it felt like all the oxygen in that room had been sucked out. My knees felt like jello and my head was swimming. Pastor Mark held mine and Timmys arm and said, "I'm right here praying". I glanced over the room and I saw a sweet ivory and pink casket. I knew that was the one. We quickly scurried out the door to where it felt like we could breath again.
 Brooklynns layout was on Memorial day weekend so we would have to have a funeral on Sunday with a private burial that Tuesday. The next day the funeral home called and asked who we wanted to do Brooklynns hair. I immediately said, "I will, I did her hair for almost 11 years and now this was a day to honor her and I was not about to let her down.
My sisters and friends met me there.  I curled her sweet little hair...she looked like an angel. And I know what your thinking...how did I do that??  So many times I wanted to just lay down there beside her in that funeral home floor and die, I can't lie. It was all I could do to keep myself together, it was truly the grace of God that held me there. But all I could think was, "it's not about me, its about Brooklynn. This is her day to be honored."

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

#26 Her last day on earth

In just a few minutes Monica was there. The morphine had increased from every 30 minutes to every 15 minutes. It was also becoming more and more difficult for her to swallow. I was mentally and physically exhausted. My legs cramped up from dehydration where I had cried so much. Monica told me that if I would lay down there by here and take a small nap that she would wake me in 15 minutes when it was time for her meds again. About 4am I fell asleep and at 5am I woke up in a panic. I was sure that I had forgotten her medicine but sweet Monica had given it to her just like clockwork and written down the times for me.
My sisters called all of our family and friends to let them know that she only had hours to live. My dad who was a hermit but was absolutely crazy over Brooklynn was on his way there. He became so overwhelmed in fear and panic attacks that he had to turn around and gone back home. I was so disappointed that he wasn't there but just in a few minutes he made it there. That meant so much for me because he truly was a hermit. He was very nervous around people and seldom ever left his home. I knew it took alot out of him but he did it because he loved her so much.
With her oxygen turned as high as it would go and morphine every 15 minutes to keep the seizures down Brooklynn just slept so angelically. The presence of God was so strong there in her room. It was almost like you could see heaven begin to open up and angels surround her. I have never experienced anything so spiritual in my entire life. With only me, Timmy, Tab, Dr Fackler and Monica by her bedside I held her hand with tears barrelling down I began to sing in her ear this song...tenderly lovingly Jesus is calling, calling for you and for me...come home...come home.. I wanted her to be at peace. Now don't get me wrong I wanted to kick scream fight and beg God to make it stop but it wasn't about me. It was about Brooklynn and this was her time not mine. I began to feel sick so I stepped into our master bath and leaned over the commode when I heard that sweet little girls voice say "Bye Mommy". I rushed back in there and she took her final little breath. She was now in the presence of her sweet Father who was about to give her everything I couldn't. I would imagine that her crown was so big that it barely fit her sweet head.
Our Pastor stepped in to say his goodbyes. When he stepped back out Monica told me to step out and her and Dr Fackler would clean her up and dress her then everyone could come in and see her. I immediately said no. I would clean her, dress her and fix her hair. This had been my responsibility for almost 11 years and I was not about to let her down today.
I got her ready and if you ask anyone that was there that day they will all tell you the same thing...that she looked like a sleeping angel. She had her earrings in, hairbow in, her limited too on and her matching blanket that had Brooklynn embroidered on it. After a couple of hours it was time to call the funeral home to come and get her. When the caretakers arrived (Richard New) they were the sweetest men I had ever met. He asked us all to go outside to the back of the house and he assured me without me having to ask that he would not cover her head up. Everyone left but we stayed. I couldn't bare to let her go without being there. As they rolled out of the driveway we stood there just holding each other. Although Brooke was no longer there  it was as if they were taking her away. All of a sudden someone poked their head out of the garage. It was our Pastor. Brooklynn was his baby and he had hid in the garage and watched just to make sure they treated her ok.
Oh and remember the rose, well, Brooklynn was taken out the front door just past it. By that evening, the dying rose began to bloom. And the story doesn't end here. There will be a few more blogs as God continued to do more things through Brooklynns life and her Funeral.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

#25 The day before

After seeing Brooklynn and begging for strength I knew we did not have long with her. If you ever want to feel Gods presence in a way that you have never felt before go to the bed of a christian who is about to enter Heaven. I promise that it was like God himself was in that room. There was such a sweetness in the midst of the despair.The only way I know to explain it is that it was almost as if you couldnt be sad because you could fill the joy of heaven. Our friends and family began to call other friends and family members to let them come see Brooklynn. We had a lot of visitors that day and most all of them said the same thing, that is was the most peaceful thing they had ever seen. She simply just slept.
We gathered some photos for a video that one of our friends was working on for the funeral. It reminded me of how many good memories we had. We had so much fun and just had lived every day just like there would be 1000 more. I never woke up and thought "what if Brooklynn dies today." I can honestly say up until these past few weeks the thought of her dying had never ever entered my mind and I'm so glad it didnt. Because if I had woke up with those glooming thoughts every day we would not have had those pictures or those memories. Brooklynns life would have been lived in a bubble. She would have never heard the sounds of the ocean, felt the sand in her feet, rode on a merry go round, swung at the park, made friends at school, greeted at church, or touched any lives. Noone would have knew she existed all because of fear.
We all sat by Brooklynns side, holding those sweet little hands that had now turned completely grey and remembering what a good life we all had together and being so thankful that God had blessed  and honored us to be her parents.
After a little while I walked outside on the front porch to get some air and think. As i sat there looking around I noticed a singe rose beside the porch. I thought it was funny that it was there since the year before my husband had tore it down. I remembered that one red rose meant I love you and due to the excessive heat the rose was black and dying. I thought to myself, that rose has some meaning that God is trying to show me. I didnt know at the time what it was so I just placed it in the back of mind.
God blessed us with such a good day with Brooklynn but that night she took a turn for the worse. A about 7pm or so the seizures came back and were violent. The one thing that we didnt want to do we now had to and that was give her morphine. We started out giving it to her every hour but that wasnt enough. We soon had to give it to her every 30 minutes. Monica her Hospice nurse and Dr F who had been there all day helped us give the meds.  A little while after that they went home. Brooklynn progressively grew worse but I hated to call Monica because she had spent so much time with us and away from her family. Finally at 2am I called her. She picked up on the first ring. I said," I am so sorry to wake you" and she said you didnt wake me God did and I"m dressed and on my way, he told me it was time.....

Sunday, June 26, 2011

#24-The Last Days

The next couple of days seemed to creep by slowly. Our home was filled with dear friends, family and the sounds of Jeremy Brooke's little friend calling and leaving messages on the answering machine that rung out through the house. He would say in his little Forrest Gump voice, "Brookie, this is Jeremy. I was just calling to see if you were feeling better. I'm building us a log cabin and I'm going to take you fishing when you get better." It seemed like everyone just froze and listened when he called. He wanted to come see her and the teachers had asked numerous times to bring him but he lived with his grandmother and she was very old and backwards and was scared to let him go with anyone.
Timmy and I just stayed by Brooke's side, holding her hand, letting her know that we were there with her. Our hospice nurse stayed right there too along with Dr Fackler who had cancelled all of her patients to spend Brooke's final days with her. We were setting by Brookes bed talking when suddenly Brooke sit straight up in the bed. Brooke could never sit up alone so we all jumped up. She was having a seizure. One so violent that it had threw her straight up in the bed. I leaped on top of her and began to pray as hard and as loud as I could. Finally after what seemed like a good 10 minutes it stopped. We then realized that all of the swelling had gone out of her legs and feet and had traveled to her brain. We propped her up in the bed to reduce most of the swelling and prevent anymore seizures.
I could never ever express the pain I felt to think that Brooke would ever have to suffer. So far up until now she had just slept, she had no pain, and def no seizures. It was as if she was fighting so hard. Becky was there with us and I was expressing all of this to her of how she continued to fight and immediately she said, "Millie, that is all you and Timmy have ever taught her." I said "what do you mean." She then began to remind me of all of the times I had told Brooke to fight, and how strong she was, and how God did'nt teach her to swim to let her drown, and that she could do all thing through Christ who strengthened her. She said "Millie, she doesn't know how to stop fighting." That hit me like a ton of bricks. She was exhausted, her little body was wore out..and yet she was still fighting. Not for herself but for us.
Timmy and I knew what we needed to do. We sat down by her bed and held her little sweet hands. Hands so sweet that they looked like they were lightly covered in pearl dust. I began to tell her how that I knew I had told her all of her life to fight but now she could rest. I told her she didn't have to fight for mommy anymore because I was a big girl. I would be fine and Jesus would take good care of mommy and daddy. It was time for her to just rest.
That night we had very little sleep. My husband who as you know by now is a big jokester took the stethoscope we had used to listen to Brookes heart and put them in his ears and placed the other end on the bible. He said, "I need to hear from you Lord maybe this will help." About 5am, Timmy woke me up. He said, "Mommy Brooke woke up and when she looked at me I heard her say that she is tired." I jumped up out of the bed, looked at her and her little eyes were circled in black. Her hands were dusty grey and her lips the same. The selfish part of me wanted to just scream as loud as I could NO!!! You can still heal her Lord! There is still time... but looking at that little girl who had fought all of her life and was so tired...all I could say was God please have mercy on me...

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

#23 Our last Mother's Day

The days were narrowing down. Brooklynn was barely drinking any liquids, I would try to get her to drink by taking a medicine dropper and giving her sips of Pedialyte. Her little chest sounded so rattly. I've often heard that before people passed away they would get what is called a "death rattle" and despite numerous patches placed behind her ears it was undeniable that was what we were  hearing. Other than that she just seemed to peacefully sleep. Our concerns about her getting bedsores began to grow. We got her up and bathed her everyday, turned her every hour but the lack of nutrients in her skin from not eating was breaking it down and would soon cause a bedsore. I've always heard that they are very painful often exposing the bones, a horrifying thought for a mother who's child was in Brooke's condition.
With our sleep schedules going in shifts days seemed to run into each other. Saturday was almost over and I realized that Sunday was Mothers Day. Not only was it Mothers Day but for me it would be my last Mothers Day with Brooklynn. I began to pray and ask God to please not take her from me that day. To please wait and let us spend that day together and being the good God that he is he answered my prayer.
At 3 am Brooklynn woke up. It was Timmys shift to set up with her and he was ecstatic to see those big brown eyes. He immediately grabbed the camcorder and began recording me a Mothers Day present, one that i would cherish for ever. There she was with those little brown eyes sweet as can be staring at the camera. Timmy said, "Brooklynn lets tell mommy happy mothers day". With all of the strength she could gather up within her she tried to smile and it was precious. A little time went by and she was off to her sweet sleep again.
Sitting by her bed that Mothers Day gave me lots of time to think and I had so many thoughts racing through my mind. It was like the devil was on one shoulder and an Angel on the other. I would think, "next year I'm going to have to spend Mothers Day at the cemetary mourning over a grave" but then I would say to myself  "Stop! You cant think that way, yes you will be a the cemetary but Brooklynn will be in heaven with JESUS! She will finally be healed. Dont deprive her of her reward!" I told Jesus when Brooke had her stroke that whether he chose to take her or let me keep her I would serve him no matter what. He had more than lived up to his end of the deal and now it was time for me to live up to mine.
The thoughts went on and on. Then I thought of all of the good times and there were soooo many. Brooklynn didn't talk,  but God had such away of allowing us to communicate with each other. For instance..I would wake up in the middle of the night from an intense dream of Brooklynn and I having a conversation. The strange thing was...she would be awake looking at me too. Then there was the time when her hip trouble had began and she was having to sleep propped up on the love seat, I slept beside her on the couch. It was the middle of the night and I heard a little girls voice wake me up and say, "mommy I'm sick". I woke straight up, looked at Brooklynn and she vomited everywhere. But the time I will never forget is when we were in the parking lot at Wal-Mart. I had been in deep conversation with God on the way there about Brooke. I said, "Lord, I love her so much, I've never in my life loved anyone like I do her. Is there anyway that you can let me know that she loves me to." It was a silly request I know but non the less it was a desire of my heart and God says he will give us the desires of our heart. I parked the car there at WalMart to do my Saturday shopping, got her stroller out, went around to her door, lifted her out, placed her in the strolled and all of a sudden she looked me straight in the eyes and in that same little girl voice I had heard so many times before in my dreams the words, "I love you mommy" came. They didn't come out of her mouth but I heard them as if they did and I wept like a baby. God had answered my prayer. I knew that day there was more heartache to come but there was also much to be celebrated. It was once said it was better to love and loss than to never loved at all and how true that is.
Our last Mothers Day together was such a special one. Timmy bought me the sweetest gifts, Tabetha made me the most awesome scrapbook ever, my sister sent me cheesecake packed on dry ice, My sister in laws and sisters bought me several gifts but the best gift of all was holding her and having her there with me. What more could a mother ever ask for.

Monday, June 6, 2011

#22 Preparations

Every second of every day that we had left with Brooklynn was counted a gift. We kept our same routine, every morning she would get a bath, get dressed, and we would accessorize with her matching earrings and hairbows. And every minute those big brown eyes would open we would try to do as much with her as we possibly could. We would set her up in  her wheel chair and roll her to the front door and let her watch as her daddy planted flowers for her. Or sometimes we would just open the bedroom windows and let her look outside and listen to the birds. But there was no denying that she was become weaker by the day.
Her heart rate would go from 55 to 145. It was very sporadic and I know it was wearing her out. Sometimes she would wake up shaking almost convulsively and we would cover her in warm blankets, then 10 minutes later she would be sweating so bad that we would have to turn the temperature down low and put fans on her.
One thing that she would always do is look around the room as if she saw something and she would follow the objects with her eyes and smile. Her nurse said she was sure that she was seeing angels and I fell the exact same way. There was always so much peace in that room as Brooklynn  just laid there in sweet sleep. With time narrowing down Timmy and I had some tough decisions to make. Decisions that no parent ever wants to make. We had to decide where she would be buried. We had no idea where to begin to look. After reeling the ideas over and over in our minds we decided that she would be buried at Lakeside Memorial Gardens. It was so nice there and she loved to go to the lake so it was fitting that she be there. When we called to check on the lots the owner said that we both would have to go there so that we could sign all the necessary paperwork. Goldie stayed with Brooke while we went but before I left I informed Brooklynn that mommy and daddy had to go purchase some lake property but if it ended up that we didn't need it then mommy would put her real estate sign on it and sell it. She just smiled.
When we got to the cemetery the man took us out to show us the available spots. It was so hot that spring, unseasonably hot. I stood there at the end of that cemetery and just gazed across. Everything looked so dry. I remember thinking over and over that I didn't want to be there. As I stared at the dry crisp grass I thought why cant I just lay down here, it isn't natural for a parent to out live their child. Why do I have to go on? Just then I looked straight ahead and there was a large white angel with her arms stretched out. I asked if there were any lots near the angel and he said yes so that's where we decided she would be.
Later that day it was time to pick out her burial clothes. I had climbed those stairs a million times at our house but this time honestly felt like slow motion. I can remember every single stepped as I felt like I was marching to my doom. It was as if I was spiralling down hill and couldn't stop but...at the same time I felt God was holding my hand. It was as if he couldn't keep me from the pain but he would be right there with me and carry me through it.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

#21- The suprise party

Time flew by so quickly those last four weeks. But one thing that seemed to stop time was a holding Brooke. I can never explain the way it felt to hold her. It was as if time did literally stop and you knew that moment would have to be a memory that would need to sustain you the rest of your life. Brooklyn steadily grew weaker to the point that she needed to lay in her little hospital bed almost all of the time. She had never slept alone so that was quiet an adjustment...for me not her. She probably loved the freedom but me being mother hen parked the bed right next to mine and set a chair between them. We would take turns sitting in the chair spending time with her and watching over her. I sent Timmy to Wal Mart to get her some Dora sheets and a comforter because she was her favorite character.
It was truly the most peaceful thing I've ever seen. She simply just slept. While she slept we sat with her and visited with friends and relatives who came and went. A couple of our good friends Carson and Becky literally moved in with us and what a blessing we were. Becky brought so much laughter into that room. At bedtime, we all piled in the bed. Some of us slept, some laughed and some cried. Timmy is such a jokester, he said he had never slept with so many different women in his life.
One Saturday morning was a little different. I looked up and there was two big beautiful brown eyes staring at me. She was awake! And suddenly the thought struck me... she wasnt going to live to see her birthday so today would be her birthday! I jumped up and looked at Goldie and said, "I cant believe you didnt tell me Aunt GO GO." Goldie just glared at me like I had lost my mind. She never knew what to expect with me. When it came to Brooklynn I would climb the tallest tower just to see her smile. "Told you what", Goldie said. "You forgot to tell me that today was Brookies Birthday!" "Oh it is?" she asked. "Yes, and if you will sit here I will be right back." I jumped in my car and made a 5 min trip to Walmart. I ran through that store as quickly as I could clearing out every piece of Dora Bday supplies they had. Then I swung by the deli and grabbed a big birthday cake. I was about to have an anxiety attack waiting in line praying so hard that she would stay awake.
I came through the door and there were those big brown eyes. I shouted Happy Birthday Brooke! My brother in law and sister in law had just came in the door. I said you are just in time for our party. They knew it wasn't really her birthday but neither even blinked an eye and just jumped right in and played the part. I hung a banner up over the door that read "Happy Birthday" in bright letters. We lit the candles and we came through there like a small parade blowing bubbles singing her favorite song..Happy Birthday. The smile on her face still is fresh in my mind. She opened all of her presents, smiled the biggest smiles and just as if God had wakened her from a coma for just a short time...peacefully back off to sleep she went.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

#20-Week 1 from Diagnosis

It was the first of four weeks that Brooklynn lived after we received the diagnosis that she only had a day to live. So many of our family and friends gathered there faithfully with us to offer prayers and support of any and every kind. Teachers from her school would come by there everyday. Some would share stories of things her friends would say and their great concern for loosing their sweet little friend. One day we received a call from a local Tv station. They had heard of a special project her little friends had came up with to remind people to pray for Brooklynn and he wanted to interview us. The children had made special bracelets of pink, purple and yellow and had spent hours weaving them together. Pink represented love, yellow friendship and purple happiness. The weaving represented all of the friends that had been woven in her life. After the news interview over 500+ were requested on top of the others that had already been made. (we joked with Brooklynn that since she had been on TV she had now became a movie star).The outpouring of love from her school and her friends was  overwhelming. It touched our hearts so much and Brooklynns too to know that they loved her so much and was continuing to believe with us for a miracle.
As the week progressed so did the visitors and the gifts. We were so thrilled to have so many people spend the last days of Brookes life with us. Our doorbell rang constantly with gifts flooding in of food, cards, flowers, blankets. You name it and it was there. I can never express enough how much all of that meant to us knowing that people would take time out of their busy lives to help us or just set and talk to us.
One of the most precious keepsakes I have is letters from her school mates, letters that I hid for a year before I would even read them again. Most every letter contained this: Brooklynn, you have always been my best friend, I told you all of my secrets and you never told anyone. I cant wait to see you again in Heaven where you wont need your wheelchair anymore. Their little faith was amazing. Now I see why Jesus said to come to him with the faith of a child.
I read all of these to Brookie and she just smiled, I even placed a bracelet on her little hand. Then I joked with her about how all of these years she had carried the burden of her friends secrets and never even told me. Even tho she was sick we still had so much fun. Being in that room with her was the most spiritual experience in my life. It was as tho Jesus himself was there holding her in his arms............and me to.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

#19- How do I tell her??

The word spread quickly of Brooklynn. Before we knew it there was people every where willing and ready to work and do whatever we asked them. It was the most amazing outpouring of Gods love I had ever seen. Our friends moved in with us, our family took leaves from work to stay with us, breakfast lunch and dinner was there just like clockwork, laundry was done daily and the house cleaned nightly so all we had to do was sit and talk to Brooklynn and take care of her. But in the middle of all of this only 1 person didn't know what was going on and that was Brooklynn.
One of my favorite places at my old house was my back porch. I loved it there. Most of the time Brooklynn and I would sit out there. She would swing and I would pray. It was so peaceful and tho it wasn't an actual closet it was my prayer closet. When I was hurt or upset or needed to have a heart to heart with God that's where I went. Now I needed his help more that ever before so off to the back porch I went. I remember  a saying "God give us the strength and the courage to tell her. She deserves to know what is going on and I want to be honest with her. Please Lord don't let her be scared and don't let me be scared either. I need the words to speak". Then of course I broke down again and begged God to let me keep her. I know it was selfish but my goodness she was all I had! I needed her!
The next day Brooke's Dr told me a story that totally changed how I looked at things. She told me about a hospital that she worked in and there was a girl there in a wheelchair. She was sick and soon another Dr told our Dr that she would soon die. She was so scared that she avoided the little girl. Every time she would see her she turned and went the other way until one day  she caught up with her. The little girl who had wisdom beyond her years looked at our Dr and said, "I want to see you in my room, today!" All day she dreaded going in there but after her rounds she kept her word and went to her room. The little girl looked at her and said, "you have been avoiding me". The Dr said, "yes your right, I have." She then said, "You know that I'm dying don't you. You know I'm dying so you ignored me? Do you know why children like me suffer?.....Because selfish people like you won't let us go..
Brooke's Dr had no idea that story was meant for me. It was time for me to let go. I loved Brooklynn so much that I had to do the selfless thing and let her go. It wasn't about me and how I felt anymore it was about letting Brooklynn finally have the peace and joy that she forever had deserved. I thought no one else could take care of her but there was one who loved her even more than I did, who wanted to hold her just as I did and wanted to give her that healing and pain free life that I had prayed for 10 almost 11 years for. He didn't want to punish me by taking Brooklynn away he wanted to bless me by making her whole and giving her everything her little heart desired.He was giving her everything that I couldn't.  That's the kind of God that I serve.
So laying aside our selfishness, putting a smile on our faces, Timmy and I took her hands and began to explain. We began to tell her all about heaven, we named  all of our family that was there that she would finally get to meet or see again. We explained how that she would finally be able to ride that bike we had promised her but this time it would have golden wheels and a great big fog horn that would let everyone know to get out of her way. We talked about how that she would be given new legs that worked so that she could finally run and play and roller skate. And then finally, we then pinched our hearts and placed it in her little hands, closed them up and told her that tho we couldn't go with her she could take a piece of our hearts with her and we would keep a piece of hers here with us. And, not to be scared because Jesus who we had told her about her whole life would be right there to take care of her until we got there.
 I could never explain to you the smile that was on Brooke's face as we talked to her that day. I know that God had given her peace about what was going on. We wasn't loosing Brooklynn, we know where she was going...... to Heaven

Monday, May 2, 2011

#18- God sends who we need before we can even ask

The next day we were released to go home. But not before they asked us a very important question. Did we want Brooklynn to die at home or in the hospital and the answer was very simple. We didn't want her to die at all.
We took her home and Dr. Cottrill called us and asked if we would let hospice come and help. I immediately said no. I had heard so many horror stories of how that they gave people too much morphine and Timmy and I wanted no part of that but its funny how God will let the truth be known.
I called her doctors office and let her doctor know what was going on. She was very sad and said that she was sorry. But the next day a different doctor showed up at our house, Dr Fackler. She had only seen Brooke a few times but had heard what was going on. I remember her sweet little face and her saying, "I don't know that I can help but I'm here to do whatever I can", and that she did. She spent more time at our house than with her own family, even canceling patients to spend time with us.
After a few days, I was having trouble getting all of Brooklynns prescriptions picked up. Some were out and they had to call Dr. Cottrill for refills. While I was setting in the drive thru at Kroger Dr Cottrill called me. She said, "Millie, please please let me call Hospice. Just let them come and talk to you because you are going to need their help." After much thought and prayer I agreed to let them just come and talk to us. I explained to them how worried I was about the whole morphine thing and they had heard that story before. They promised that if I would let them help us that they would never even mention morphine.Timmy and I talked and a couple of days later we agree to let them come in. That was the best decision we ever made.
The first nurse came out and brought all of Brooke's meds. She was really nice but she gave me morphine and told me to just keep it in the cabinet in case we needed it. I was a little freaked out but I never said anything. The next day there was a different nurse there, Monica. She told me that she had heard about Brooke and had children of her own. She wanted to know if she could take on the case.  Later, I learned that she was over the nurses and didn't even have any patients but felt like God had told her to take Brooklynns case. After only a visit or two I knew that God had sent her right to us. He was giving us everything we need b4 we would even have time to ask.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

#17-The news that no parent ever wants to hear -Part 3

I finally found my way out of wherever I was and I headed to school. I hated telling Ms. Linda as bad as I hated  being told myself. She loved Brooke so much too and I knew this news would probably crush her. I remember walking down that hallway of that school. There were so many good memories there. I also remember thinking "this is it", "this is the very end of everything." I asked Ms. Linda to walk me out to the van and I told her that Brooke wouldn't be back to school, she was only given days to live and  we wanted to spend her last days at home with her. She agreed and just as I expected she was crushed. I slowly pulled out of the parking lot for the last time and we went home where Timmy was waiting on us.
That evening about 5:00pm, Brooklynn spiked a fever of 104. I immediately called Dr Cottrill just like she told me to and we took her straight to U.K. We went through the ER where we were taken immediately to MRI. I went in with her and I remember her laying there so still. She was the best little girl and its like she knew that we really needed that test. I stood there beside her praying that there would be a miracle. That God had allowed her heart and brain to be healed.
They admitted her and the next day the doctor who was on call would make his rounds and tell us the results.
We were hanging out laying in the bed playing and watching TV when  I saw the doctor go by with all of the interns. A few minutes later he went by again, and then again but he never came into our room. We were praying so hard for a miracle. And I thought that maybe he was saving our room till the end, you know..the best news for last. But that was not what God had planned.
The doctor finally came in but this time he was alone. He had made his rounds with the interns but he wanted to talk to us alone. When I saw tears streaming down his face I knew it was time to accept what had been laid before us. It was just like Dr Cottrill had said. Her little brain had deteriorated over the past 10 years. Soon her body would begin to shut down. After he left I walked out of the room to get some air. When I opened my door I saw all of the nurses standing there with tears in their eyes. As I walked away I even heard a nurse say, "there's the lady who's daughter is dying." I have never felt so helpless in my life. I went outside and set on a bench and cried like a baby. I was a mad at God and I just wanted to tell him. I layed it all out before him right there on that bench and I didn't care who saw or heard me.I was sure there had been some kind of a mistake, she was only 10yrs old.  A mother should never outlive her child. I remember praying, "please make this stop, please. I don't want to be that lady who's daughter is dying. You can fix this God, I know you can. Please please Make.. This... Go...Away!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

#16 The news that no parent ever wants to hear-part 2

After our lengthy conversation one thing I remembered Dr. Cottrill  telling me was that if Brooklynn got the least bit sick or ran a fever to call her and they would admit her in UK and do an MRI. If we had just scheduled one then it would take months and Brooklynn wouldn't live that long. She told me that she would probably pass away in her sleep but not to sit up and watch her all night and last but not least to keep her life as normal as possible. To let her continue to go to school as long as she could.
I walked into the waiting room where Greg was. I don't know what my face looked like but he never said a word. When I got Brooke in the car I told Greg that we had gotten some bad news. I didn't want to tell him the extent because you just have to know Greg-O. I didn't want to scare him.
I drove home with my hands gripping that steering wheel so tight that there was no feeling left in them. My sister called and said," Millie is everything ok? I have a really bad feeling?" I cant remember exactly what I said but I think I told her that the Dr had lost her mind and told me that Brooklynn only had days to live. After I said it out loud I begin to cry. I knew what she told me was truth, I just didn't know how to process it.
I then called Timmy and by this time I was all to pieces. He told me to stay there and he would come get me but I couldn't take my hand off the wheel or my foot off the pedal. It was all stuck and I was frozen. I kept looking in my rear view mirror at Brooklynn thinking how can I tell her? How can I tell her that she only has days to live? Did I let her down? Did I not pray enough? And finally, ..How can I ever live without her? She had only spent 1 night away from us in her entire 10 almost 11 years! She slept with us every nite. If we ate she ate, If we went somewhere she went with us. We were nearly 1 whole person. Our whole life was to make her healthy and happy.
Timmy kept calling me and finally told me to stop at Nanna and Poppas and wait there on him. He had called them and when I got there they were waiting outside. I let go of that steering wheel and stepped out and when I did my legs felt like spaghetti. I couldn't walk. I couldn't think. I've never felt so hopeless in my life.
I still today don't remember how we got there but somehow we got home. When we pulled in there were several of our close friends there from church. I think Pastor Mark was there too. I told them the news and how that Brooklynn only had days to live. I remember them saying what can we do and this is what I replied. " I know that Brooklynn will be ok. I'm praying that God will miraculously heal her but if he chooses to take her and leave me here..don't let me die too. What I meant by that was this...Don't let me be left here a dead woman on the inside, locked in my room, laying in bed, living life but not doing a thing for God and his kingdom. Don't let me grieve myself to death and die spiritually.
That night Timmy and I bought a blow up mattress, laid it in the living room floor and we took turns sleeping. The next morning I got Brooke up, got her dressed and Timmy took her to school singing her favorite songs  just like Dr. Cottrill told us to.
 I was in total and complete shock to the point that I was literally out of my mind. I went to the office, walked in looked at everyone and walked straight back to my office. I set there and stared at the wall for an hour. I then got up walked to the front and looked at Nicole and said,"You are never going to believe what the Dr told us yesterday, she told us Brooklynn has days to live." I remember her asking me if I was ok. I think I said, "I'm going home". I cant really remember I just remember crying and seeing tears running down her face too. I have always hated storms especially driving in them. I called my dad to tell him the news.I dreaded calling him worse than anything in this world. Him and Brooke were best buddies and I didn't think he would be strong enough to survive. It was a heart wrenching conversation to say the least. When I hung up the phone with him I looked around and I was lost on a back road way out somewhere in Nancy and it was coming a horrible storm. I've always been very scared of bad storms but not that day.  I looked up at the sky and thought what can be worse than what we are going through..... let it storm.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

#15 The news that no parent ever wants to hear- part 1

As I mentioned in my last blog it was Brooklynns last year at Southern Elem at I was so worried about how she would make it at middle school with Ms. Linda. In was leaning more and more toward the idea of just quitting my job and staying home with her when suddenly things took a different turn.
Brooklynn's hip had become increasingly worse. After 3 or 4 sets of the injections sadly they were no longer working. Her hip was so painful that she had to sleep sitting straight up on the couch with her leg propped up every night and I slept right beside her. She had had her birthday party right before school started and everyone commented on how swollen she was. I hadn't noticed it but now looking back at her birthday pictures I don't know how I missed it, she weighed 105lbs!. People would constantly say, "what are you going to do, she is getting so big?" I would say, "God is going to work it out, I trust him., " Or i would say, " Maybe Ill just strap her to my belt and put roller skates on her". I didn't worry one time about the next day or even that day. God had brought her this far and I knew he would continue to take care of her. As long as he had given us the strength to lift her that's what we would do.
Finally her Dr at Shriners said that we were out of options with her hip. We would have to consult her heart dr to see if she could have the surgery.We were so excited to see her heart doctor. She had been her doctor for years and was in a wheel chair too.She adored Brooke along with all of her patients. After a catch-up session she did an echo cardiogram on her heart and said it looked good, all except for her right valve that was leaking a little. That was minor tho compared to what all had been done to her heart. I told her our concerns and she said something to me that made me feel like all the world got quiet and listened. She said, "Millie, what is worse? Living like she is in this pain or dying? What is wrong with going to Heaven anyway? I thought about that and I said you are right. I mean we live our whole life to get to heaven but then we are scared to death to go there?? It doesn't really make sense does it. Even though I thought that, I knew that God wouldn't let her die. To me, she was indestructible. She had lived through everything under the sun from chicken pox to pneumonia. She was 10 yrs old and had been in the hospital 7 out of those 10 yrs.
I informed her that Brooke was going to live a long life of good health and prosperity according to my prayers,  so she said , "Well then, if she is going to live a long life we need to get her fixed." But before I could even schedule her for surgery things started happening. I picked her up from school that week and she was terribly sleepy, so sleepy in fact that she was drinking...got strangled... and couldn't even wake up to cough. Both of her feet were swollen the size of footballs, and her teachers thought she was having small seizures at school. Just a few months before that she had had a major seizure on Timmy and I that landed her an extensive stay in the hospital.
So,  I made her an appointment at her local dr here to see what was going on. She looked at her and said that she felt like her hip was infected. I know that everyone makes mistakes and doctors really just guess like we do but something was not feeling right deep inside. God allows a mother to know when their children are sick and I knew something was wrong. I called her heart doctor and she immediately told me to bring her in. Timmy couldn't go with me that day so Greg (nanna n poppas son) went with me. After all, we had just been there the week before and everything was perfect. She would just check her out, give her some meds and we would be on our merry way. That's not quiet what happened.
 I will never forget that day as long as I live. Here I was playing with Brooke as usual in a room that was grey with no windows. The nurse walked in, asked me some questions, I answered them. Nothing unusual just the same old stuff. Then came Dr Cottrill, she said "How is my baby and what is going on?" I told her about her sleeping so much and how her feet were swollen. She asked me if she could step out for a minute, I said yes.
I thought that odd but thought there must have been an emergency, no big deal. A few minutes later she came back in but not by herself. This time she had a nurse with her. She said, " Millie,you need to set down.I don't know how to tell you this but there comes a time in children like Brooke's life that Jesus just needs them in heaven and he calls them home." "What???? Are you crazy?" I thought. The only way describe that moment was like this..I felt like I was in a bad dream and those walls were falling in on me and there was no way out. It was as if someone was playing a really bad joke on me and they would jump out any minute and there would be some relief. After I took a minute to really grasp hold of what she was saying I looked at her and said, "what are you talking about?" She then repeated herself. After I listened to the whole thing again and a little more I said," How can you tell me this. How can you possibly know how long she will live? You haven't ran one test on her you haven't even done blood work and your looking at her telling me that she is going to die." I don't know if I was mad, in disbelief or just in total shock. She then looked at me and said something I never expected. She said, " Millie, the reason I know this is because my daughter was just like Brooke and she died of the very same thing."
I was absolutely speechless. At that moment, I knew that she knew exactly what she was talking about.

Monday, April 4, 2011

#14 Boyfriends??? Seriously??

It was Brooklynns 5th grade yr at Southern and I was so sad. I couldn't help but worry about her moving on to Middle School. Especially when I realized that Ms. Linda couldn't go with her. I started praying the first day of school that God would do something miraculous so that I could either stay home with her or Ms. Linda could go. She had been at Southern 8 yrs total! 2 yrs of preschool, kindergarten and now she was a big 5th grader!! We were so proud of her and she had made sooooo many friends along the way and one little boy who thought she was pretty special..make that 2 little boys.
Shelby who is an awesome little boy was and had been her BFF since 1st grade. He was in a wheelchair too and reminded me so much of Brooklynn. The teacher would snap pics of them laying side by side, holding hands!! They cracked me up. Neither of them could talk but the new exactly what each other was saying. One day I picked Brooklynn up and she and Shelby were sitting side by side in their wheelchairs. I released her brake and I noticed that she still wasn't going. I looked down and Shelby had a hold of her. I said, "Shelby, it's me.Can I take Brooke home with me?" He looked at me and smiled and let go. On the way home I said,"ah ah Brookie, you and Shelby love each other." I looked in the rear view mirror at her and she was rolling her eyes!!
Then came Jeremy. He could walk and talk he just functioned at a lower level. When he talked he sounded just like Forrest Gump. When Timmy would take her to school in the mornings he was there to great them. He would say in his Forrest Gump voice and accent,"what kind of van do you Timmy." Timmy would say, "I have a Chevy with a lift for Brooke's wheelchair Jeremy, why?" "Well, I was needing to borrow it. Me and Brookie are going fishing down at the pond." "You are?" Timmy would say. "Yep, she loves me and I love her. I'm going to build me a cabin for us and were gonna get us a van just like yours so I can take her places."
It was the funniest conversations you have ever heard. One morning he met him and said, "I was talking to Brookie yesterday and she said she sure does love you.....now you tell me that she loves me." Timmy said "Jeremy Brookie said she loves you too." It was so much fun just to hear what he had to say every morning and listen to him talk. I told Timmy that even tho Brooke didn't talk I felt like God allowed them to communicate. He is just good like that.
That year started off so wonderful but Brooklynn's health started to deteriorate. We didn't notice it at the time, but looking back at pictures you could see how swollen she really was. It wouldn't be too much longer that we would receive the news that no parent ever ever wants to hear.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

#13 All I want for Christmas is my ...

After Brooklynn' s hip pain had progressed even further we decided to try the cortisone injections. In order to do this they would have to put her asleep at UK and go in with a large needle and insert the cortisone between her bones to keep them from grinding. We were a little nervous and a  little scared but mostly excited for Brooklynn to get some pain relief. We went early that morning and we were out in 45 min. But I didn't realize we had to set in that same waiting room and wait on her to get out of surgery that we did when she had all of the heart surgeries. My anxiety level was high when I opened that door but It's funny how things change. That room didn't look nearly as big as it did the first time I went in. I don't think it was the size of the room that scared me but the size of the giant we were facing back then.
A few months later I was brushing Brooke's teeth and the whole front of her enamel (which had slowly been chipping away due to all of her medicine) came off! I called immediately and got her an appointment with the pediatric dentist at UK. Now, after the stroke Brooklynn had an extremely bad bite reflex. When you put something in her mouth the reflex would cause her to bite down and she couldn't let go! We never dared stick our fingers in there unless it was an emergency and even then I would wrap a wash cloth around my fingers to try to cushion the bite.There was a student there that day, a young girl who was really pretty but a terrible listener, lol. I told her to please make sure that she did not stick her fingers in her mouth and told her why. She said, "oh well we have this metal clamp to hold her mouth open and there is no way she cant bit through this." I said ok and just turned my head. In just a few seconds I heard her screaming help me, get her. I turned around and began massaging Brooke's jaw to get her to release. I still couldn't help but laugh because after all I had warned her and the look on Brooke's face was priceless!
Soon the Dr came in and said that she would need crowns put on those two front teeth and again she would need surgery for that. Guess where it was? UK. Here we go again, the same waiting room but this time the surgery would take 3-4 hours. I was so thankful tho that God had prepared me by letting us set there for the hip surgery a few months earlier, he is just so good like that! We sat down and both of us again were a little scared and nervous.We barely spoke to each other because we were both praying so hard. We had prepared Brooklynn by telling her that she was getting new teeth that day! She was so excited! After about an hour my pager went off and they said, "Ms. King, the doctor is wanting to speak with you, go to the RED phone." "The red phone? The red phone? They still have the red phone? Isn't there a blue one or a yellow one I can use, does it have to be the bad news red phone? (You will have to read my earlier post to know why we dislike the red phone so much). I picked it up and it was the Dr. I stood there with tears streaming down my face. Timmy was scared to pieces. He told me that she had some abscesses so he just pulled her top teeth! Those were her permanent teeth! I know it seems so little compared to all we faced but I had made Brooke a promise, I promised her new teeth and now they are gone! The Dr said it was pretty normal in children like Brooke to pull them because of all the meds she took but again, we were crushed. We walked back to recovery and there she was. Laying with an oxygen mask that was full of blood. It really caught me off guard and I nearly fainted! I didn't think it would look that bad but I had to remind myself that we walk by FAITH and not by SIGHT.
We took her home and my funny husband came up with an idea. I know he said, let's not tell Brooke they pulled her teeth, let's tell her that she got her new teeth. Sooo...the next day she took her little tongue and was sticking it against her front teeth and Timmy said, "woo hoo, look at those new teeth sissy"! She grinned so big. I took her back to school and she smiled at Ms. Linda and she said what happened? I said look she got new teeth! Brooke was so happy with her new teeth and we got the biggest kick out of her smiling and showing them off. Lesson learned: Sometimes in the midst of heartache and trials you just have to smile and  pretend you have teeth even if you don't. Be positive and lift up God even when you think you cant. Don't be devourable to the devil!  The bible says Satin wanders too and fro seeking whom he may devour.What makes us devourable? Our very words and actions! If it were Sat morning and you wanted to go to a yard sale what would you do. Would you get in your car and drive all over Somerset and hope to run into a yard sale? No! You would get in your car and search for signs, yard sale signs. Satin does the same thing. He goes around looking for signs and if he passes by your house and there are all of these negative words coming out like "I don't know why we have to got through this, our lives are so bad, God never does anything for me..."  then Satin hears those words,  slams on the breaks and says, "Ok, Ill be stopping right here!"

Sunday, March 20, 2011

#12-"Brook-land, is that you"

One of Brookie's favorite things to do was go down to the beach and listen to the waves. We would squeeze her in her teeny weeny kini, smother her in 5 layers of 50 sunblock, put on her cool shades and off we would go! Daddy would go before us and lay out her lawn chair and umbrella and we took a cooler for her pediasure. She would lay there for hours and just listen. But this trip to the beach was a little different.
Poppa and Nana had asked us to go to Florida with them one summer and we were so excited! They are always so much fun to travel with and we knew we would have a blast. Poppa made the reservations and when we got there everything was perfect. Our room overlooked the pool, tiki hut and lagoon. There was even a wedding taking place right below us that we got to watch. We unpacked everything and we just hung out and talked the first night. The next day we headed down to the beach. Brookle and Amber had matching bikinis (which we didn't plan). Poppa and Timmy had went down and set up a big tent for Brooklynn.
But when I got down there she was crying. That was very unusual for Brooklynn to cry because she had such a high pain tolerance. She got shots all the time, IV's, finger pokes and none of those ever made her cry. The nurse said one day that she just wished she would cry so she wouldn't feel so bad because those big brown eyes glaring at her made her feel awful.
So, the next day I decided to just lay her by the pool and see how that went. She screamed! But then I would lay her on her other side and she was fine. It was the strangest thing. Later that evening we took her shopping. She was agonizing in pain. Poppa came up with an idea that I could ride in an adult wheelchair and hold her and he would push me. So here we went through the store me riding in a wheelchair with Brookie on my lap and Poppa pushing us, laughing all the way. The whole rest of the vacation I spent in the room with Brooke giving her Tylenol every 4 hours. Then I noticed that it was her hip that was hurting her so bad.
When we got home I immediately took her to her doctor who referred us to Shriner's. We got in in just a few days. We were setting in the waiting room when I heard an African American lady say, "Brook-land is that you?" I looked around the corner and there stood Valerie! She was the nurse in ICU at the hospital when Brooklynn was born who had been so hard on me. I grabbed her and hugged her neck. She was so thrilled to see us. We sat down and talked and she said, "I knew you was going to be a good mom, that's why I was so rough on you." It was such a blessing to see her!
Soon after the doctor came in and ran xrays and there it was. Her hip had come completely out of socket and lodged up against her bone. One of her legs instantly had become almost 2 inches shorter than the other. It was so painful that adults who had it would have immediate surgery but that wasn't really an option for Brooke. If they did surgery she would be in a cast from her waist to her feet making it impossible to change her or move her. That wasn't the bad part, the bad part was that she only had a 50% chance of living through the surgery. The doctor suggested that we do cortisone injections in between the bones so that they wouldn't grind when we moved her. We were so brokenhearted. Timmy and I just sat there and cried in that room. One of the nurses came in and prayed with us. We prayed continuously that God would heal her but God knew his plan. The Bible says His ways are not our ways and his thoughts are not our thoughts. This week I read this in my devotion and its exactly what I've been saying since Brooke was born. Often well, always we walk through things for 3 reasons: 1.) So that we will be able to comfort those who are in affliction-when people know you walked through it they will listen to you. 2.) That we would not trust in ourselves but in God-Anything that causes us to turn to God (sickness, divorce, job loss) is an asset not a liability. 3.)That thanks maybe given-Do you remember where God has brought you from. Instead of focusing on the bad begin to thank him this week and pray that he will in return make you a light to others!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

#11 The Smile

Everyday of Brooke's life had its challenges. One thing we didn't do however was worry. We always thought of the scripture that said take no thought for tomorrow for sufficient is the evil in the day thereof. We knew Brooke would get sick and have to go to the hospital but if we woke up and she was well, then it was a wonderful day, if we woke up and she was sick we just went to the hospital, stayed about a week hung out together until she got better. That was basically our life but it was an awesome one.  Brooklynn spent 85% of her life in the hospital which included some Christmas's, birthdays and other holidays but she never complained. She taught me so much about what it meant to have the faith as a child. Did I think she would ever die? No! That wasn't even an option for us, the thought never ever even crossed our minds. Sure she would get pretty sick but I would always tell her that God didn't teach her to swim to let her drown. He who began a good work in her would be faithful to complete it until the end. We had some close calls tho.
Brooklynn had some major stomach issues. She  had a hiatal hernia along with severe acid reflux disease. It would cause projectile vomiting which we were very use to until the day came when her excessive vomiting turned to blood. She would vomit up 3 or 4 times a day pure blood. She was hospitalized over and over with no clear answers as to why this was occurring. I'll never forget one day when we were here at the hospital they called a local ENT to come and check her. He walked in, pushed her head back, sprayed some numbing med down her throat and then ran a light into her nose. I stood in the corner and cried. Not because I was sad but because I was angry. He had'nt told her anything that was going on, never even spoke to her and there she was looking at me like, "what is going on." I would love to say that God miraculously healed her stomach but that didn't happen. She was hospitalized again and again for the same thing. But one thing I never forgot was this. When I would lay with her in the bed holding her head up while she would vomit bucket fulls of blood she would look over at me as sick as she was and smile.She didn't say, "mommy why me, why is God doing this to me, I don't deserve this." She simply just smiled.
 That smile showed me more things than any Pastor, Teacher of Prophet could have ever told me. She showed me no matter what I faced or had faced God would bring me through. She made me realize that just because life wasn't the way I wanted it to be I could still have the joy and peace of God that surpasses all understanding. But most of all it showed me that if I kept my eyes on him I would be a winner every time.
This week has been a hectic week, full of bad news but we don't have to look at the bad. God never promised us a perfect life, even Paul spoke many times about the thorn in his flesh but he also said whatever state I find myself in I maketh  myself content. My challenge for you this week is to take the magnifying glass off of your problems and began to magnify him. Don't look at any of the circumstances but keep your eyes on God and he will put that same smile on your face that  hell and all of its forces could never wipe off.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

#10-God sends confirmation

I am a true believer in confirmation. God says in his word that he will not do anything unless he first reveals it to his prophets (Amos 3:7). Whenever we felt uncertainty in areas concerning us or Brooklynn God was always there to give us reassurance. It started from the time she was born, I was sitting at the Ronald McDonald house and a lady walked up to me and said, "I don't know your name but God has told me to tell you that you are not to blame for your daughters sickness, he is not punishing you." Then  there was the multiple times we would be in a restaurant or a store and someone would walk up to us and ask to pray for Brooklynn or just reassure us that God was in control of our situation.And we will never ever forget the time we went to the Smokey Mountains and stopped at an old home place to show Brooke and there was a mysterious man who kept following us and smiling. Finally when we go to the end he walked up to us and said that he had been watching us and the way we cared for Brooke and that God had sent him to tell us that she was going to be ok. He said he was there with his wife but there was no one else or no cars there. When we left he was standing in the middle of the hwy waving to us and smiling. I looked at Timmy and told him not to look back again because I was pretty sure he was going to disappear. When we got home Brooke immediately got sick and was hospitalized but God had already let us know she was going to be ok.
When it came time for us to find a new church God again confirmed where we should be. We were driving 2 days a week to Stanford to an awesome church but the drive was getting a bit too much. We had driven by Victory several times but this day was a little diff. As we drove by I heard God speak to me clearly and say, "your families ministry will develop out of Victory." I looked at Timmy and said, "God said our ministry will be developed there, think we should go?" LOL. Our first night there was the night of Heavens Gates Hells Flames (which by the way is coming this month). I was nervous about us being there for the first time because I wasn't sure where we would set Brookie and her wheelchair. Ill never forget that night walking in the door and a tall grey haired man(who later became Poppa) met us at the door. He said, "are you the king family", I said "yes we are". He then said, "Good, we have your seats reserved right up here and we have pulled a chair for Brooke's wheelchair, if you need anything at all you just look at me and I'll get it." Wow, I had never been treated so well in a church in my life. As a matter of fact the last church we went to they had asked us to carry Brooke in so her wheelchair wouldn't be in the way. It wasn't long after that they asked us to greet. I wasn't sure how I could do that and leave Brooklynn up front by herself but that was not what they asked. They wanted all of us to greet, Brooklynn included. She had her very own name tag and I would lay the bulletins on her lap. Every Sunday I would roll her up to her seat and there was a paper on the floor that said, "this spot is for Brooklynn and these seats are for her parents". We found a new family there. Poppa and Nana, Amanda & Amber became family to us. If Brooke got sick all we had to do was call and say we are on our way to the hospital and they would beat us there. God new exactly who and what we needed in our lives and once again her provided. I always wondered what ministry God had for our family. To me at the time it didn't look like we had much to offer. Sure we attended and worked at all the church events, Brooke included but I thought serving God required more. I thought we had to be up on stage with bright lights, be able to play music, sing or what have you but unfortunately none of us possessed any of those talents. One day I prayed and asked, "Lord, where do we fit in, what is it that you have called us to do?" He immediately answered and said, "I have called you to be Tim, Millie, Brooklynn & Tabetha King." I then thought, that's it! Sure we only stand at the door and smile but hey that's what we are supposed to do. God isn't looking for our abilities, he wants our availability! Amazingly enough just from Brooklynn sitting in her wheelchair at that door every Sunday she totally changed peoples lives. She didn't speak, she didn't walk she was just available and God used her. Just this week I was showing a house to an older lady who said, "Millie, I always wanted to tell you something. I have awful health and I struggled to get out of bed every Sunday for church. But I would look at little Brooklynn sitting at that door and think.. God, if she can get up early, get ready, come here and serve in her condition surely I can just come and sit on the pew and listen.
Let Brooklynn be a reminder or a confirmation to you today that it doesn't have to be the big things you do for God that pleases him, it can be the small tiny ones. Brooklynn took her candle though it may have looked broken and shined the light for the whole world to see...now....what will you do with yours?

Sunday, February 27, 2011

#9-All things working together for good..

Romans 8:28 says, And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose, this is the scripture that we seemed to live by throughout Brooklynns life. It would seem that whatever sickness, whatever adversary we faced that day or that week we would place it in God's hands and it would be done. But there comes a time when things catch us off guard and our Fight or Flight kicks in and Flight seems like the quickest and easiest way out, which brings me to my next blog.
Brooklynn was 5 and had started her first year in her new kindergarten class and I was a Headstart teacher at Burnside Elementary. All was well in life concerning our new family but there was always that little voice in the back of my mind that said, "I wonder when her real dad or what we always referred to as "sperm donor" will show back up?" After our divorce because of the abuse he was only allowed 2 hours every other week visitation and that was only if he completed the parenting classes. It wasn't long until he no longer kept up the visitation and soon after we moved to Somerset. Every now and then I would pass him on the road and he would stare at me as to say, "you better be scared of me". But after awhile I just stared back and prayed that I didn't run him off the road for the things he had said and done to us. So I began to pray that God would somehow, someway allow Timmy to adopt Brooklynn. It seemed such a stretch to pray such a thing but look what God had already done for us and after all is anything to difficult for him?
A couple of weeks later while I was teaching class a knock came on the classroom door, it was an attorney. He said Ms.King, I'm here to inform you that you are being served. "Served? For What?" "Well, your ex-husband is wanting visitation ." I said "Why? why does he want to see her now, it has been years since he saw her last and now he wants to see her, this makes no sense?" But then he told me the real reason and it of course had to do with money. I was furious. I said, "Sir, you have no idea who you are representing", and he said, "I'm just getting paid to do my job", and I said, "somethings aren't worth the money". He left and I walked back into my room angry and crying. I couldn't believe that God was allowing this to happen. I reasoned over and over in my mind what would happen. What if the judge didn't listen to me, what if he believed him instead? How could I bare to make her spend time with him and besides that what about her health, it was so fragile. How could he feed her? She only ate for me and her aide. I was an absolute wreck.
After much plotting and pondering I came up with an idea and it was so far from God's plan. My flight instinct had kicked in and it was going full blast. I had decided that first I would offer him money to just sign over his rights, (i know your probably laughing but it was the best I could come up with in such short notice). My back up plan was even worse, If he didn't take the money I was going to pack our bags and Brooklynn and I would leave the country for a year. See how rampant and silly our minds go when we block God out. I finally had had just about enough. I was on my way to mom and dads and my head and heart was worn out. I just stopped on the road and said, "God, I am so sorry. I give this whole situation to you. Lord, you have done so many miracles for us how could I have thought such silly things. I just pray that somehow you would allow him to sign his rights over. More than that Lord I pray that we never have to even see the judge." I don't know about you but sometimes I pray and believe that God hears and other times I pray and I KNOW that God hears. That was one prayer I know that God heard.
The next morning was court. I woke up and thought my face felt a little weird. I walked in the bathroom looked in the mirror and I was covered in whelks. One of me eyes was almost completely swelled shut. Then I went to get in my car and had a flat tire. I knew then that something good was about to happen. We went to the Courthouse and due to construction we had to meet in this little tiny room. We were squished in there like sardines. I stared at the clock  to keep from having to look at him sitting right in front of me. It was 8:50 and his attorney bent down to me and asked if we could talk in private. We walked out side and  he said," Ms.King this is a strange request and you may not agree with it but I have to ask anyway. He is asking that you would allow him to relinquish all rights to your daughter." Tears streamed down my face and I said this is what I have been praying for. He smiled so big at me, hugged my neck and said, "I remember what you told me that day about somethings aren't worth taking money for and you were exactly right." My attorney came in and held me and we cried together. She handed me a paper and said, "we don't even have to see the judge." I just looked up and smiled at God just as he had smiled on me that day. On our way home we were calling everyone. It was official, Timmy was the proud father of a baby girl. She weighed 32lbs and was 35 inches tall. Even tho I was so happy I still cried. I cried because of two reasons, one was that I couldn't believe that someone could just hand over something so precious? She was our treasure, how could anyone sleep at night and not see those great big eyelashes or wake up and not see her smiling face. To have given her up for me would have been unimaginable.The 2nd reason I cried was because for the very first time he had finally done the right thing for Brooklynn and I had finally forgiven him. I could finally be free, free of night mares, free of those dreaded thoughts and worries, free of every angry thought that I had bottled up in my heart and mind. Free of everything!
Now, if you notice at the beginning of this post I wrote how that a few weeks before this I had prayed that God would somehow, someway allow Timmy to adopt Brooklynn. Well, this was God's way of allowing this to happen. If only I had know from the beginning I could have saved my self alot of worrying and lost sleep, even a few silly thoughts. But just as I said before, all things work together for good of those who love him. Sometimes we go through somethings that seems the total opposite of God's will.We think that God has simply abandoned us, hung us out to dry but he hasn't. Often we have to walk through the valley to get to the top of the mountain. Simply put...trust in him, dont look at the situation and watch what he will do. Through him, we are winners everytime!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

#8-Raising Brooke, Serious Business or Monkey Business??

Brooklynns deteriorating health had its serious side, like the numerous hospital stays her needing constant care and other issues but that didn't keep it from being fun. Sure it was scary when her fever would spike in the middle of the night and we would have to rush her to the hospital (and no it never got easier, I think it got harder) but God always gave us laughter. Brooklynn didn't talk but she let us know what she wanted with her actions and her eyes. She loved loved loved to watch TV so the last time I tried to put her little chunky body in a pair of tights I held her up and tried to shake her into them. With sweat rolling of my brow I put her back down and informed her that she needed to go on Jenny Craig. She cackled out laughing.
Every morning Timmy took her to school he would sing Happy Birthday and tell her it was her birthday. Then he would sing Brookie Brookie Brookie is my chocolate chip cookie. She couldn't set in a car seat so until we got a van with a lift in it we would have to lay her in the seat and strap the belt around her. Well, one morning while Timmy was singing he forgot to strap her in and she rolled right out into the floor! He stopped and picked her up and she just looked at him as to say,"you really are crazy aren't you."
Brooklynn also had a weak stomach and would projectile vomit. We was watching Passion of the Christ the first year it came out at the movies. There was this man in front of us who had his hair glued to his head in hairspray. The whole movie he kept rubbing the back of his head making sure nothing was out of place. Well...on the scene where they beat Jesus Brooklynn lost it and guess where it went. Yea well lets just say she and I snuck out and he probably didn't receive salvation that day, lol.
On one vacation we were at a really nice restaurant when I noticed Brooke needed her diaper changed. There was no place to lay her because she was so big so I took her out to the van and tried to very discretely change her. The parking lot was filling fast so in my efforts to hurry I jerked her diaper off. It is no secret that anything hard and shaped like a ball will roll so, here it goes rolling down the parking lot. It was like slow motion going right in front of the feet of the people entering the restaurant! Timmy said go get it and I said what am I suppose to do chase it down the parking lot and say, "excuse me this belongs to me". Let's just call it "the one that got away", LOL.
When Brooklynn was around 3 I started noticing changes in her body, ones that weren't normal. I took her to the doctor and they send her to an endocrinologist. He called Brooklynn a Princess and he asked her if he put a pea under her mattress would she fell it because she was so pampered. He then diagnosed her with early puberty. Her pituitary gland had been damaged from the stroke so it had no idea how old she was and sent her into puberty. They gave her a shot every month to slow it down but by first grade it was pretty noticeable. The night before the first day of school I was crying to Timmy about it. I said, "how many 1st graders have breast, I feel so sorry for her". Timmy looked so funny and said, "That's not a bad thing. She'll stroll into her class room raise her shirt and say...look girls, I bet none of you all have a set of these!"
Sure, I did my share to. Like the time I accidentally put her ear drops in her eyes, and the time I fell with her in the parking lot and how could I ever forget when she was in ICU and I clipped her nails and cut her finger. It wouldn't have been so bad but I jumped up and asked the nurse if she needed to go to the ER???? But who's keeping score..right??
We had a bad situation but God always gave us laughter. The Bible says if you sew tears you will reap joy. We sewed many tears but the joy of having her was unimaginable!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

#7- School Days

Brooklynn required pretty intensive therapy and lots of it.I enrolled her in therapy in Knoxville and we would drive there 2-3 times a week (when she wasn't in the hospital). So,  when the big day came that she turned 3 the only way to get those therapies was to enroll her in school. I couldn't believe she had to go to school at 3! Now, if you don't have them in school by 3 they say they get behind?? Wow, times have changed. So, I enrolled her in the preschool program there where we lived. The first week of school was about to begin and the teacher wanted to meet with me. I went to talk to her and she said that Brooklynn couldn't start school that week. She was afraid that her disabilities would scare the other children so she needed a week to explain some things to them. She said that she was going to tie their arms together and legs together to show them what it was like for Brooke not to be able to move well. I said OK and a week later she started. My dad and Timmy were furious. They said they would have never even noticed her disability had they not made such a big deal about. I was OK with it tho, we had been through so much that that was a mild bump in the road. A few weeks went by and I went with her everyday. The kids loved her, (especially the boys). I told her they were only using her for her cool wheels (wheelchair), lol. Timmy and I had decided that we needed to move to Somerset. We put our house up for sale and looked at some houses up here. We found the perfect house for us but still needed to sell ours. We began to pray and a knock came to the door, it was a buyer! The exact amount we needed for a down payment on our new home was the exact amount they gave us down! We knew that was confirmation that we had done the right thing. I didn't want to leave my family so the one condition for us moving tho was that Timmy would go to church where I picked because I had been going with him since we were married. He agreed and after the first service he was hooked!
The new move meant a new school and that for me was scary, especially after what we had been through. I had requested her records but after 2 weeks the school had not received them. I finally called the director of the special education dept and while he had the phone down I heard him say, "Send the records she's not our problem anymore". Now, let me say I don't get angry easy. I can probably count on both hands the times that I was angry, angry enough to cry and every time it was over my girls. There's an old say that hell hath no furry like a woman scorned. They should have replaced woman with mother. My very sweet pastors wife said once that if you want to see me make a complete fool of myself then mess with my children. How right she was. I got into my car and drove 30 mins straight to his office. I walked in and my friend was the receptionist she looked at me and said, "are you ok". I said "I am, but he's not going to be". I sat there and bawled like a baby in anger. He opened that door and I said,"I have came to tell you one thing and one thing only. My child is not a problem, these children who are handicapped are not problems, if you feel like they are then you need to find a new job. Now, where are her records". He gave me the records and I left.
I took the new records and enrolled her in Southern Elem. Brooklynn not only got a new school that day but we got a new family. The kids absolutely adored her. Her first day she got a note from a boy telling her how cute she was. They never  noticed her disabilities. It was so funny, 2 yrs later one little classmate walked up to me and said, "Ms. King, why cant Brookie walk". I said, "well, her legs don't work. We are still waiting on God to fix them but until then he gave her these cool wheels:. She said, "Oh, ok" and went back to playing and that was the only time in her 8 yrs there that I even remember anyone asking. Brooklynn felt so at home there, every morning Timmy would take her and they would roll down the halls and she would say hi to all of the teachers and her little friends. I went with her for 2 yrs but after that I knew it was time to separate. I was offered a teaching job at Headstart and took it so that we could still be on the same schedule. The first morning I left her there I was sitting in the parking lot crying. One of the lunch ladies pecked on my window. She asked if I was ok and I was so embarrassed. I said yes but I've realized something today. I always thought Brooklynn couldn't make it without me, that she needed me but all along I needed her. I remember her teacher told me once that another teacher was talking about how sorry she felt for me. I thought how could someone fell sorry for me, I have the best child in the whole world. I could not have asked for a more loving, sweet daughter. She ate anything we gave her, wore anything I put on her, let me fix her hair anyway I wanted to. I always told her that she was just a little angel that fell straight from heaven and landed in my arms.

Monday, February 7, 2011

#6 And Four Became One

Brooklynn began to make a little more progress. She had lots and lots of therapy and lots and lots of prayer. She was still having trouble gaining weight so we would load her bottles down with high calorie things like butter and syrup. Our home life was still terrible so after much prayer and some other things I knew it was time for Brooklynn and I to leave. Up until this time no one really had knew what was going on and what we had been through including my parents. They knew what they had seen but no other details so I mustered up enough courage to call them and tell them. Brooklynn and I had to hide in a motel in another state for 3 long days until they found my ex husband and put him in jail. I was absolutely terrified.
We came back home to mom and dads and that's where we lived for a few months. I would ask God over and over to please send Brooklynn a wonderful dad. One that would love her as much as I did. Then  I started talking to Timmy. I had met him before but we never had really liked each other. In fact, he was the one who helped Brooklynn & I hide out but I still never thought he was someone I would date or much less marry but God had it all in his plans. Every time I would see him or talk to him he would always talk to Brooklynn and play with her.He would make funny comments to me when he would see me at his brothers house like, "how about you & I run off and get married", and I would say, "how about you get back on your side of the fence and leave me alone".  He was very drawn to Brooke though, he even offered for us to move in so that he could help take care of her. I told my mom that the next guy that asked me out I was going to punch in the nose well guess who it was....and no I didn't punch him in the nose. Our first date he took Brooklynn to Toys R us and bought her a Stroller because up until this time I had carried her everywhere. She loved it and used it for a few years. Soon after we decided to get married, let me rephrase that...He told me to come get my car washed and that we needed to dry it off so he drove me to the courthouse and got our marriage license.
Brooklynn had just turned two and had never smiled our laughed  until Timmy came along. We went to Gatlinburg and he would let her feed the ducks, he put her on rides, let her pet different animals, would take her to Florida to the beach and let her lay and hear the waves. I was terrified but he would tell me should could do what every other kids could do. Brooklynn would look at me with those eyes as if to say, "chill out mom". He had such a sense of humor that Brooklynn loved but when it came to her he could get really mean real quick. Everyone was so loving and welcoming to Brooklynn but there was the curious ones who would stand and stare. Timmy would very politely (well I wouldn't use the work polite) walk up to them and offer them a picture of her and let them know that it would last much longer than the 30 minute glance they were taking.
One night I was sick and had been in the bathroom for a good 30 mins. When I came out what I saw still brings tears to my eyes. Timmy and Brooklynn had been laying on the couch watching TV (TBN). There is a pastor on there named Benny Hinn who does alot of praying for miracles. He has testimonies of how people were healed from palsy and lines the stage with wheelchairs that had been abandoned due to numerous healings. At the end of the program he had asked that if you needed a healing to touch your hands to his on the TV screen and he would pray. Timmy had stood Brooklynn's little limp body up on her knees in front of the TV, unfolded her little drawn hands and was holding them to the screen praying. I walked out and said, "what are you guys doing". He looked up at me and was weeping and said, "this man said that if you lay your hands on his you will be healed".  I laid down that night and thought to myself, "God, you have truly blessed Brooklynn with a wonderful dad".
Soon after, I got a blessing too! Not only did Brooklynn get a new dad I got a new daughter. Sweet little Tabby. She was 6 turning 7 and so quiet and shy. Her and Brooklynn immediately became best friends and I knew right away that she was the part of our family that was missing. She jumped right into the roll of being the big sister. It wasn't easy with Brooklynn being handicapped and so many Dr's appointments but I don't think Tab ever gave it a second thought. I had made up my mind from the time I met her that she would be treated just like Brookie. She had only one chance to grow up, I had already had mine so I was going to make hers the best I possibly could.Timmy and I have said so many times how funny it was that before these two were ever born that God had chose him to be Brooklynn's daddy and me to be Tab's mommy.
Before Brooklynn had her stroke God had given me a dream. I had always heard that if you dreamt that you were in an elevator that fell and you hit the bottom then you would die. I dreamt that I was in an elevator and it was falling and I hit the bottom....but I didn't die. I stood up shook it off and got out. That was God warning me that something I thought would kill me was about to happen but with him I had survived and gotten stronger. Now God had given me a new family....Brooklynn had a new dad & sister and I had a new husband and daughter.

Monday, January 31, 2011

#5 God's amazing grace

Our stay continued in the hospital for what seemed like forever. Because of the stroke Brooklynn's immune system was very weak leaving her open to everything coming and going. At one point I remember her fever was 106+ . The nurses were all over the place throwing things racing to get her temperature down. I had never seen a temp that high so all I could do was just stand there dazed. We were suppose to be on our way home until all of this had started and everyone had thought we were home so I was surprised when my telephone rang. I just reached over and picked it up and it was a lady from church. She said, "Millie, the lord laid it on my heart to call and pray for Brooklynn is she sick". I muttered, "yes". She began to pray and Brooklynns fever immediately began to drop. I remember hearing her pray about Peters mother in law in the bible having a fever and how they prayed and it broke. God was so amazing that he had her to call right at that specific time and pray that specific prayer. As soon as that was over she was introduced to RSV. I'm sure every mother that read this gasped because it is such an ugly respiratory virus that results in death if the baby is young and cannot fight it off. Back to ICU we went but this time we were in isolation. Every 2 hours the respiratory therapist would come in and run a small tube down into her lungs to suction them out so she could breath and in between that I had a little suction cup that I would stand and pat her lungs with to try and break some of secretions up with. It was so sad to watch her lay there and barely be able to breath. The doctors really thought she had very little chance of surviving it but she did. I prayed constantly over her and God once again brought her through. I would sit and talk to Brooklynn so much. The one thing I ALWAYS told her was "Brooklynn you can do this, God made you strong. He never taught you to swim to let you drown". She probably still hears me telling her that today in Heaven!
We spent about 8 months there after the stroke.. well on and off about 8 months. We would come home for a week and then she would have to go back and stay for a couple of weeks. During our time home we hardly ever had any visitors. Had it not been for God we would've been so lonely. I remember I would be so tired that I would walk into walls while carrying her, once I fell asleep rocking her at the hospital and nearly dropped her in the floor. If she cried I would just pray and ask God what it was and he would show me. I was still married but we never saw each other much. I spent most of my time caring for Brooklynn and it was better that way. He would make rude comments like "he didn't know why I talked to her, should didn't understand and would never be anything". I use to get so mad I would cry. I had asked a couple of people from church if they would just come and visit but everyone told me the same thing, that they couldn't bare to look at her. One woman even told me that she couldn't come because she had pms. Not me, I loved looking at her. Yes she did look a little different. You could tell that she was now handicapped. Her hands were starting to turn in and her feet. The most distinctive thing was her eyes. The stroke had affected the part of her brain that controlled her vision. So, when you looked at her one eye would be looking up and the other would be to the side. I had taken her to the eye Dr in Lexington who had told me that she would never ever see and that her eyes would never line up. One day I was driving down the road talking to her and I just began sobbing. I pulled off and this is what I prayed, "God, please let her be able to see me, please let her be able to see the one who loves her so much". That week during therapy her therapist noticed that she was beginning to track things with her eyes. Later on they slowly began to line up!!! God is so good.I took her back to that very same doctor who now said she CAN see. I made him write it out in a report so I could hang it up at church for everyone to see.Jesus said he who has eyes let him see and he who has ears let him hear. Jesus knew that we all had eyes and we all had ears, that is not what he meant. He meant spiritual eyes and spiritual ears. Ears that were sensitive to him and his people. Eyes that could see him in everything especially his hurting people. Me & Brooklynn and Timmy went to the lake with his brother one Sunday afternoon. We were parked on the bank letting Brooklynn see the fish and the water. After a few minutes I noticed this big ugly deformed looking fish floating on the water. I yelled and asked him what it was. He grabbed a stick and pulled it in. It was a huge fish with a broken back. He grabbed and taunted me with it. Then he had a stick poking at it. He then through it back into the water. I knew God was showing me something but what? What could I learn from a broken down ugly fish....this is what God told me. Later that night he said this, "Millie, I've made you a fisherman of men. The fish that you catch may be ugly, broken down and not fair to look upon. Their backs are broken down by the cares and the weight of the world. Don't beat them up or make fun of them. You just catch them and Ill skin them and use them".
In this blog I don't want people to think I was perfect  because I was far from it. I have made more than my fair share of mistakes in my life. But, I was determined that I would be the very best for Brooklynn that I could be because she was mine. God gave her to me and I loved her more than life itself. So what if she looked a little different. I use to say, she may not be perfect but who is. I dressed her everyday whether we were going to church or just in the hospital for a lengthy stay. She deserved to be treated as anyone else I would not have it any other way. She may have been handicapped but God used her and he will use you too no matter what kind of fish you maybe.

Monday, January 24, 2011

#4 The Second Diagnosis

I spent the night in the hallway outside the ICU door. After a few hours they let me go in and see her for 5 mins at a time. There were so many tubes and somewhere around 24 different meds, 12 of which were vital to her living. The next day she very slowly began to improve a little. She still never woke up. Me and the nurses were standing by her bed talking when suddenly she coded. They grabbed me and shoved me out the door and all I could say was JESUS JESUS. I was no longer out the door then they called me back in and said she was stable again. I whispered in her ear that if she did that to me again I would spank her.
Second day, she still a little better. She wouldn't wake up tho and if I tried to wake her she would shake and jerk. The nurse told me that it was all the medicine she was on and not to be alarmed. I asked the nurse what I needed to pray for that day and she said she needs to urinate because she hadn't since surgery and if she didn't then that was a sign she was shutting down. I said OK and prayed and right before our very eyes her little bag filled with urine. The nurse just laughed and shook her head. She said she believes in miracles now. Day 3 and 4 were a little better still she would not wake up. I hung pictures of herself on her bed to try to get her attention but nothing. I told the nurses and they said they would have the Dr who makes rounds to check her out. That night I was of course by myself, and the Dr came in. He ran same tests and asked that I call my Pastor and my family to come in that morning because he needed to talk to us. Now, there was 3 rooms in that hospital that I remember very well..the Chapel where I spent most of my time, the ICU, and the "bad news room" where they took people in and they came out crying. That's where he wanted to meet, in that room. The next morning there we were. I remember that the Dr was crying so hard that I was more worried about him than what he had to say. He looked me center in the eyes and said it is really bad. When I looked back through your daughters surgery notes I saw where the surgeon accidentally poked a whole in her heart when he was closing her up and she had been dead for 20 mins! During that time her brain got no oxygen to it therefore she suffered a massive stroke. The worst stroke I have ever seen in all of my years of doctoring. You have today to let me know if you want to just take her off of the ventilator and let her die. I asked him what kind of damage had been done and he said, "she will never walk, talk, breath on her own, basically she will be a vegetable and you will have to take care of her the rest of your life". He then said, "don't look at those pictures on her bed because that is not the same baby you have now". I called mom and dad and all my family and told them. They were soon on their way. Meanwhile I went to my favorite place..the Chapel. I layed on the floor with my face laying on an open bible. I remember it like it happened yesterday. I said, "please please show me what to do". Then I knew what to do. The absolutely hardest thing I ever have done in my life. I said, 'Lord, Brooklynn is yours. If you choose to let me keep her I will be so thankful but if you have to take her I will still serve you no matter what". I got up and headed for the door and as I grabbed that door handle I heard his voice so clearly and it was a scripture I had never heard. He said she will live and not die and declare my works!! I ran upstairs and mom and dad was there. The nurses were trying to convince them to have me turn off the ventilator. Dad asked me what I had decided and I told him what God had said and he said OK then, that's what we will believe. I loved my dad because he would uphold me no matter what. So when the nurses would try to talk to him he would say no that's what God told her.
The next day the Dr came in and asked me my decision. I told him what had happened and he was almost angry. He said " well, your not going to get a  miracle, you wont wake up in the morning and get a million dollars", and I said, " I may not wake up and have a million dollars but if I save my money over a period of time Ill get my million, God may not heal her tonight, but he can heal her a little each day". He just shook his head and walked away.  The next few days you would have thought we had committed a crime. The nurses would hardly speak and the Dr def wouldn't. I couldn't understand why they were so upset. Just because she wasn't perfect they thought she shouldn't be allowed to live. And for those of you who are wondering about the surgeon who did all of this, he resigned the day after her surgery. They really felt silly the next day when the little girl who would never breath on her own was over breathing the ventilator. The Dr said he would have to take her off because she would no longer need it. YAY! We were ecstatic. But then the devil tried to raise his ugly head again. The heart Dr said that her foot was purple and that there had been not heart beat in it the past few days. The only option would be to remove it unless they could hear a heartbeat in it soon. I stood up and said, Devil you are not getting her leg. That evening guess what??? There was a heartbeat. It wasn't to much longer until Brookie could be moved to her very own room. You would have thought we had moved to The Hilton. I was so tired of sleeping in the chairs and so was my sisters, lol. We got to the floor but Brooklynn was far from recovered. She was still blind in both eyes. When she looked at you one eye would go up and the other to the side. They wouldn't even line up. She could not cry she meowed like a newborn cat, she couldn't swallow or even suck a pacifier. It really was horrific. One morning after praying I woke up and I said, today Brooklynn is going to eat. I called my family up, even my granny came. I asked the nurse to make her a bottle. She thought I had lost it, I guess they all did but she still fixed it just to see what would happen. I blessed it and Brooklynn took two little sucks. That night she ate a little more. Before we knew it she was eating away. The nurses came from all floors to see this miracle. I remember one in particular who had been her nurse in ICU when she was born. Back then she had asked me if I believed in miracles. I told her yes. She said, "will you pray that I can have a baby, we have been trying for years". I prayed. When she came to see the miracle of Brooklynn eating she said, "I have been off work but I wanted to tell you, I am 4 months pregnant!" God is so faithful. I look back and see all of the miracles God did.One right after the other and I think, why don't we see miracles like that now. That was only 15 yrs ago but alot has changed in 15 yrs. Yes God still does miracles but we don't have time to pray for them much less wait to hear if he speaks to us. I am as guilty as anyone. Especially now having a busy job and busy 3yrd old, then there are cell phones, laptops and facebook to keep us preoccupied. Today I challenge you to stop. Stop if even for a min or so and pray for something big. Something that only God can do. Then wait to see if he speaks to you or just wait to see the miracle happen!