Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Olivia starts radiation

Well as you know, with the tumor that has now been discovered in Olivia's brain she has started a 12 week round of radiation treatments along with steroids.  This treatment is in the hopes that the tumor will shrink or at the least, not grow anymore and hoping that this will reduce some of the swelling in the brain.  CT scans are being ran throughout these treatments in order to follow the growth of not only the tumor, but the malformation in the artery in her brain.  Olivia has seemed to do well with her first round of steroids and radiation but there has been some changes due to the swelling in her brain as well due to the seizures she is having.  Olivia is still a very happy little girl, but she is beginning to show signs of regression.  Her balance is becoming more unstable than before, where she used to say several words she now just mostly babbles.   She has drooping on the right side of her face, and her eating has become less than what it used to be.  The doctors told Kelly that because of the tumor being within a milimeter of the paratoid gland, these things were sure to happen as well as some other problems but it was not certain of when these things would become a reality.  The neurologist has ordered more physical, occupational and speech therapy in order to keep her going physically and keep the constant learning.  As you can imagine, this has been extremely hard not only for Kelly and Jeff but for the girls.  Kelly has to bear the whole responsibility of caring for Olivia.  She goes back and forth from recognizing people, to not remembering who someone is.  This is heartbreaking for everyone.  Also, not knowing truly how many seizures a day she is having is hard because there is damage being done from them and Kelly feels helpless that she doesnt know each and everyone, where she can alert Olivia to come to.  Thats where we are so thankful that in a few weeks, "HERO" will be at home with little Olivia and begin to help her.

We ask that you please continue to pray for Olivia and the family.  Everyday is hard on everyone.  What will Olivia do today, what or whom she will forget.  Please continue to pray for healing for precious Olivia, pray that as she continues to endure the treatments the side effects of the radiation and steroids will be minimal and she will begin to show signs of improvement.Please pray for strength for Jeff and Kelly that as each day brings new challenges, they are able to face them with Gods help and make each day count and that each of the girls are ok at the end of the day.

Please pray for the doctors that monitor Olivia on a weekly basis, that they may have insight on what to do next and that they will continue to care for Olivia to the best of their abilities.  Pray that the doctors are men and women of God and that they ultimatley do Gods will in the care and treatment of Olivia.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Newest Addition

Well, all I can say is Praise God, Praise God from whom all blessings flow.....As you know we had posted a prayer request for a seizure dog for Olivia.  Thought it sounded like a strange request, but knew that as God's people saw the need and began to pray, that when it was time  met, it would be met.  Through  dear sweet friend, a blog was posted on her page and a friend saw the need and thought of another friend....As the phone tag game started, a wonderful Constable Bobby Thurman gave a phone call and offered up a 5 month old registered black lab.  God does answer prayer!!!!!  The dog was donated free of charge to Olivia, and so began the next journey.  Tuesday, Kelly and Olivia picked up the new addition to the family whom Hannah very cleverly named HERO....So now as a trio, Kelly, Olivia and Hero left for Dallas and headed to Shadows For Life, a service dog training facility who is going to train Hero to alert the family of when Olivia is having a seizure and to get her out of one as quick as possible, as well as be her best friend to help her deal with the continued trials that she will go through.  The trip to Dallas was quick trip but it was obvious that Hero and Olivia were meant to be together.  At the training facility, the trainer watched as Olivia interacted with Hero to see how his tempermant was.  It was no surprise, that Hero knew he belonged to Olivia.  He followed her every move, and when he was put in his crate, the tables turned and Olivia stayed right with him....

The training will be from 6-8 weeks and then the family will travel back to Dallas to reunite with Hero and bring him home and learn to integrate him into the daily routine of Olivia.  He will be with her 24/7 from doctor visits, to visits at grandmas, to baths and bed.  This is going to be a very new process for everyone to get used to.  Please pray that as the family prepares for this new addition, that there will be peace.  Please pray that as Hero learns Olivia and her every move that he will do wonders for her and that Kelly and Jeff will feel some since of peace and a little lighter load being carried.  Please pray for the trainers, who will prepare Hero for his daily duties with Olivia that they have the wisdom for training him to meet her needs.

Kelly is eternally grateful to everyone for the prayers for Olivia and her needs.  She is also very grateful to the few friends who made it possible for this precious gift to be recieved.  Thank you to those who continue to pray for Olivia and the entire family, the prayers are greatly appreciated and the best want that Kelly asks for from others....PRAY PRAY PRAY

The Thurman family who donated Hero to Olivia, Shadows For Life who is training Hero and to the ones who connected the need through prayers, facebook and phone calls, your in hearts and minds forever.

Whatever you will ask the Father in My name, He will give it to you.  John 16:23

Update on Visit to ENT with Olivia

Well, Kelly and Olivia embarked on a day long visit to the ENT last week in hopes to get some answers on this tumor, and some uplifiting news that things would be ok...That was simply not the case.  The ENT decided to order an ultrasound of her own to look at from different angles and to compare to the ones previously taken at Texas Childrens.  As it appeared from all the tests done on Olivia, the tumor is sandwhiched in between the malformation in her brain and the paratoid gland.  We were told that the tumor is inoperable....The dr said to imagine the tumor as a piece of lunchmeat and the malformation and the gland as the bread, she asked can you remove the meat without disturbing the bread??? No, but we know that not to be true.  God, the ultimate healer can remove that tumor and heal her brain, and we pray and believe that!  Olivia will face many obstacles as she lives with this tumor.  Due to the fact that its above the paratoid gland, it can cause for her to loose her hearing in the right ear, loose feeling on the right side of her face, cause her problems with swallowing and with her speech.  Due to not knowing if the tumor has been there and just became big enough to see or if the tumor just started to grow, the Dr's are unaware if its at its point of growth or if it's still growing.  Therefore,   Kelly was sent home with steroids and Olivia began them and will take them for 15 days, then she will recieve radiation on the tumor twice a week for two weeks, then will repeat the steroids and radiation then see the dr again to see if the tumor is shrinking.  Depending on the outcome of these treatments and the followup, it will be determined whether another round of treatment is needed at that time.  The main concern is the hope to stop the tumor from growing, shrink it and in the process of the radiation, hopefully hit the malformation and cause the swelling in her brain to go down and keep it from pushing up any further into the main artery in her brain.

This has proven to be a very difficult time for Kelly, Olivia and everyone involved as you can well imagine.  Kelly feels like Olivia's life just dangles on a daily basis not only not knowing what each new day brings but wondering and worrying as how to deal with this and care for Sam and Hannah as well.  Please continue to pray for peace not only for Kelly and Jeff but for the girls.  Pray for understanding, that they might try to help Olivia everyday to continue to thrive and to be a happy little girl who loves life and eveyone in it!  Pray for the Dr''s that they be given the knowledge to know what needs to be done for Olivia in her daily treatments as well as long term treatments.

Kelly especially appreciates everyone who keeps up with the blog and says a little prayer for Olivia and the girls, everyday.  Prayer is the most precious gift anyone can give, and at this point that is all she feels she can give as well.  Please continue to be in prayer for the digitrace test that is being ordered for Olivia.  Please pray that provisions will be met and that insurance will cover this costly test that the Neurologist feels Olivia needs.  It will determine by watching her for 72 hours what she is doing when she's having seizures and how often she is having them, because as you can imagine, it is impossible for kelly to watch her 24/7 and mark and monitor every seizure.  We thank everyone who gets the word out about this blog and asks others as well to pray.  When two or more are gathered together in My name, there I am in the midst of them. Matthew 18:20