Twelve years ago today, a new blessing entered my life. I didn’t know it at the time but she would end up changing my life forever that day and still continues to.
As trying at this past week has been, it’s refreshing to look back and see blessings we have in our lives. The fact that we can still hold those that we love and tell them face to face just how much we are about them. Don’t ever let those opportunities go. Take advantage of every chance you get to let people know just what they mean to you.
Risa, you’re a blessing from God. You always have a smile and you always have a warm hug to great me with. I still remember the day you were born. You had my heart that very day. You’ve let me be a part of your family and share with you. For that I am very thankful. May today be a special day for you. Know that you are loved and cherished.
shortly after the miracle of John Keller, my wife and I got asked to work on the video for that. We put together a dvd which ended up taking on a life of it's own. That then progressed to the book that Patti put together. She also took over his blog witch eventually migrated into a full blown website. That produced an avenue for her to get in contact with other people needing miracles. I can't even name off all of the people she's worked with since then. I think the one that will stand out the most in my mind, now and probably for the rest of my life is Loulou. She came into my life one day after Patti had been in contact with her family for some time. Someone in Loulou's family was having a birthday party and Patti was going to surprise her by showing up at this party. I tagged along to try and capture some video footage of her.
You see, Lou Lou was 10 at the time and suffering from two forms of leukemia. On the day I met her she was riding her bike along the street with other family members. She had a head scarf on since she had already been through some chemo-therpy After the interview i shot some b-roll in her bed room. For the most part, it was a typical little girls' bedroom. stuff animals, pictures from magazines, her stuff from her elementary school, but alongside the hello kitty dolls and homework were syringes, medicine bottles and hand sanitizers.
She was first diagnosed this past February. Just recently have things been getting really rough for her. Her 11th birthday was a few weeks ago. Patti and i helped to coordinate a webcast/birthday party for her and her class back at school. This past friday night there was a prayer service for her at one of her relatives house that i got to go to. We had just received a piece of good news and it was a bit of celebration. Her situation was still dire, but at this point, anything bit of hope to stand on was something to make a big deal of. Around 9 this evening patti got a call from Loulou's mom that they were going to the hospital. Another call later on confirmed that family was being called in by the hospital. Her mom asked patti to join them.
Ever since yesterday that video has been on my heart and i just have been feeling a strong urgency to finish it So while patti was gone this evening, i began working on it.
At first the project took on the same basic framework as any other project, but once it got to the point of giving it a personality and emotion, things started getting hard. I found myself in tears at one point. Going through this footage and family pictures of this perfect little girl with her whole life ahead of her going through struggles i can't even imagine. and her parents.. how do you plan for the funeral of your 11 year old daughter? how do yo console someone like that. what do you even say? It seams bleak, I'm not saying that i don't have faith for her healing, but this is the 11th hour. This is the time when things are probably at the worst they have ever been. It's hard to keep up the hope.
I'm reminded of the day cancer took my mom. we got the "family" call early one morning. I was young and didn't really know what was going on. I know people were saying things like.. your mom is real sick. she may be in the hospital a for a long time. but one conversation that still sticks with me was from my uncle who was driving me up to the hospital that morning. "you know.. don't be surprised if she dies" I'm sure he said it much gentler than that.. but this many years later that was the point he got across and that's what i remember.
It's 1:30am and patti is still out there at the hospital. when i wake up it will probably be to news of what's happened. she may make it through another night, another week, another year... I won't give up the hope that she has a life and a purpose, but at this point every moment is a moment worth counting.