Monday, October 31, 2011

Trick or treat...

Happy Halloween!

I have to admit, I was never a huge fan of Halloween until I had kids. Now I love it. It’s fun to see how excited they get over dressing up in their costumes, grabbing their little plastic pumpkin pails, and shamelessly begging candy off of strangers who were kind enough to leave their outdoor lights on. Then, once you’re at the farthest point from home, your little one decides she is too tired to walk, so you lug her on your shoulders, along with her pirate sword, hook, and pumpkin while she taps you persistently on the head to let you know you just passed a house with its lights on too. Once you finally make it back into the relative safety of home, while blatantly ignoring the little ghosts and vampires on the street waiting impatiently to see if you turn your lights on, the battle begins to convince your preschooler that she needs to wait until AFTER dinner to dig into her goodies.

All that being said, I really do like Halloween. Caylee, as you can see from the picture above, was a pirate. She has been telling us for months that she wanted to be a “bad pirate;” I kept telling her that all pirates by definition were inherently bad, but to satisfy her we bought her a hook and eye-patch to complete the outfit. Thankfully tonight she decided as we walked out the door that she was a “nice pirate” and told me that the sword was for hitting the bad ones. I was relieved by her change of heart, but a little worried that we would happen across a helpless toddler dressed as a bad pirate who would be taught the err of his ways by the blade of my daughter’s plastic cutlass. Levi had a little Halloween celebration at the hospital today too, although it was really reverse trick-or-treating. He, along with most of the other little ones on the floor, was confined to his room, so the nurses and techs came to him to give him candy and treats. Now that’s the way to do it, stay in your own place and let the candy come to you! I am sure, though, that he would have loved to stroll up and down the hall in his frog costume and score candy from the nurses and doctors. I kept thinking to myself tonight that next year will be so much fun with both of our little ones trick-or-treating together again. Maybe I will be able to convince them to dress up as the Legions of Doom or some other awesome old school WWF tag team.

Levi is doing well. Late last week he started to run little fevers. Nothing super high, just 99’s, 100’s, and a couple 101’s. But they were enough to convince the doctor that he needed to go on an antibiotic. So, back on the IV he went. He’s been getting doses of antibiotics every eight hours, and the fevers seem to be steadily diminishing. He’s had a couple 99’s over the last day or so, but is down in the 98 range most of the time. We are just praying that he stays healthy and the fevers don’t come back. He received a blood and platelet transfusion last week, and his counts are still bottomed out. We did notice today that his platelets seem to be going up on their own, so that’s a good sign. Usually once that happens, his counts start to recover. We are hoping that maybe, just maybe, his counts will come up a little this week and we can bring him home for another rest.

Steph and Caylee were able to get away on a little mini-vacation this weekend. They headed down to Brown County with Steph’s mom, sister, and little nephew and niece. It sounds like everyone had a good time; there was lots of crafting, trail-walking, and a little shopping thrown in for good measure. My mom stayed with Levi on Friday and Saturday night, which meant that I had a couple of days here at the house by myself. It was very, very quiet here, but I was able to get a lot done. I still have a project list longer than I care to think about, but I got the important things checked off, like clean the house in case Steph and Levi are able to come home and get the bikes ready for the winter (after a little riding on Saturday of course). Levi had a good time with his grandma, and as you can see from the picture apparently thought he needed her glasses to properly watch the cars outside his window. It was a very restful weekend, and I am appreciative of the effort by both of our moms to get us away from the hospital for a little break.

I headed down to the hospital on Sunday to relieve mom and suffer through the Colts game with my little buddy. We had a fun visit together, and later in the afternoon Steph and Caylee came back. We enjoyed a couple hours as a family, dining on cafeteria pizza and pudding and watching the kids chase each other around Levi’s room. We have learned to grasp the opportunities to be together as a family when they come, even if it is just to hang out for a little while in the hospital.

Finally, before I close, I wanted to share two somewhat selfish prayer requests with you. The first is for my little sister’s wedding, which is on the 11th. I am praying and hoping that maybe, just maybe, Levi’s counts will be high enough that he can join us. We haven’t talked to the doctors about it yet, and of course it will depend on how quickly his ANC recovers, but we have a lot of family traveling out for the wedding who haven’t met Levi yet, and I would love to be able to introduce them to our little warrior. Not to mention that it would be great to have Levi there with us as we celebrate Hannah and Rob’s big day. The second is Christmas. I would love, absolutely love, to have all of us together at home for Christmas. I know this is really pushing it, and I am trying to not get my hopes up, but all I want for Christmas this year is to have my family together outside the hospital. My God moves mountains, and I am asking Him to make this a reality. So, along with asking for your continued prayers for Levi’s complete recovery, I ask you to join us in prayer for these two items as well. I know they’re a little selfish, but they really would mean a lot.

Well, that’s it for now. We love you all, and will continue to keep you posted on his Round IV recovery.

God bless,
Michael, Stephanie, Caylee, and little Levi


  1. Michael, Stephanie, Caylee And Levi
    you ALL are such a blessing to us. You are constantly in our prayers and thoughts. I love the way you continually PRAISE HIM in your storm. you are reaching people who need to see how in the srtorms of this life HE STILL REIGNS.

  2. Not selfish at all Michael. We all hope those two events happen for all of you!!


  3. Dear Ones,
    Michael, you haven't a selfish bone in your body! We will certainly be praying for Levi to be able to be at these events!!
    Grandpa and Marty are pretty high today. On the double scaffol up at the peak of the house where the chimney used to be. They are finishing siding the east side of the house. Hopefully they can get it done today so Grandpa can paint it. Except for a few small things, we will be able to say the house is done. Thanks,God, for all the blessings.

    Our love, Grandpa and Grandma G.

  4. I will pray for you and your holidays through these hard times. Last year James was getting over pneumonia at Halloween, had it again at Thanksgiving, and getting over it once again at Christmas. I also missed my sister-in-law's wedding during that time so I completely understand. I will pray extra hard that you will all get to be together at home to celebrate Jesus!

  5. Making memories is a part of what life is all about. Hope you get to makes lots of them. There's nothing selfish about this. Will pray that God will grant you the blessing of enjoying Christmas with your family outside the hospital!!

    Barb Ridley

  6. Hey guys! First...Legion of Doom for sure next year. Levi is lookin like he will be a good Hawk, Caylee will fit the Animal role.
    Second, thanks for reminding me that our God is always caring for us. We have had a crazy last couple of weeks here and it really brought me back to perspective reading this blog. I can't even tell you how stoked we are to come see all of you guys at the wedding.
    We can teach Nolan and Caylee our mad wrestling moves from our (MUCH) younger days.
    Consider that Christmas prayer request at the top of our list brother. Nol and I will see you in less than a week! Love you guys!

    Jerid, Kelly, Nolan, and Caleb