Endurance

Waiting… I never really enjoyed waiting. I admit, I use to be better at it too. I remember people use to say “Denise, you have the patience of a saint.” Just words, but I must have been given a great gift of patience. I have to work harder now at Patience, because I feel I lack something, Endurance…  I get anxious now waiting. I feel like I do not have the strength to wait things out.

When you have a child with refractory epilepsy, so much waiting is required. No matter how much patience you think you have, watching your child have a seizure will make you feel like you do not have the endurance to go on…
You start this medicine with so much hope that it will make the seizures stop. It does, for a while and another is added when things get out of control…               On and on this process goes…

 Finally one day the Dr. says, this may be the best we get. We did the VNS surgery for this reason. The medications tend to help Brynn honeymoon for a time, but once again his body just gets use to it or learns how to seize despite the medication. So, we did the surgery with the hope that he would do better than the one third chance of a 50% reduction in seizures…. and we wait… and wait… Did you know that in training for endurance, you could end up with a negative impact on strength if you do not also practice resistance training. Waiting in faith is like training and without prayer we too would end up weak. The boys and I pray every night for Brynn and all the children and adults we know that have seizures to not have seizures anymore. We praise Abba Father that one of them has stopped having seizures and a few others improved! This has encouraged our faith once again and helped me to become stronger… and continue to endure! We weaned one medication and started a new medicine… and waited some more.  And…. Once again, we have a honeymoon! Yes, Brynn is back to baseline and better with the Onfi! He is not having Tonic Clonic the moment and the Tonics and Complex Partials are so much less traumatic! This honeymoon started out great, fizzed out and then came back full force it seems! We are so excited and enjoying this time! We started fund raising to get Brynn a SAMi Seizure Alert Monitor Camera System. Brynn and Brett always being find of Survival Bracelets wanted to make them. So we bought the 550 Parachute cord in fun colors and got to learning! Brynn and Brett like to try, but they haven’t mastered the art of making

them… So at present I have made oh about 70 of them!  Saving and Hope to buy him a Recumbent bike soon too! After he had the seizure while riding the bicycle he has been heartbroken that the neuro said no more bike riding. He has only been able to ride his 4-wheeler once so far. The recumbent bike sits low to the ground, has three wheels and in the event he has a seizure while riding at least he will be close to the ground and not fall over… We even had a Lemonade Stand for the first time last Sunday! The boys had so much fun and raised $20 for the SAMi fund!!

So here we are again, waiting… and being patient… Knowing ever still that Abba Father is in complete control… It will be as it will be, in HIS time and only then… Not the easy fun we had hoped for, but you know… at least we are having some fun along the way!!
Ah, indeed…
The longer you wait the better it is!!

Don’t Ever Doubt It,
Abba Father Knows ALL!!

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iPad’s and Children With Special Needs

  If you have a child with Special Needs, you simply must visit this link! While researching teaching methods for Brynnon a while back I read again and again how great an iPad is for Special Needs kids and that there are so many apps for them as well. The website above has videos to show you what the app looks like before you buy it! They are also giving iPads to schools and children with Special Needs in each State. They are excepting donations to get this done from the app makers, businesses  and people like us too! There are also free apps as well. I know when I spoke with the Neuropsychologist that did Brynnon’s testing about it, he said that Brynnon would benefit from one as he is a visual learner and learns best when a picture or chart is used to teach. The only problem I have in getting an iPad for Brynnon is the cost $500+ which I am sure that most parents would struggle with. I have sent a description of Brynnon to this site, although I think the giveaway’s are already assigned. I know Brynnon would do well with it as he has made a lot of progress since we started using  Time4Learning.
Which I highly recommend for those that home school! This is a flash based program so it will only work on a computer, and will not work on the iPad. Which is best for Brynnon anyway, as they would be separate activities helping his cognitive & attention difficulties.
  Not too much going on here… I have done some soul searching and praying… and I feel better about Brynnon’s situation. It was one thing to point out his symptoms do not match Rolandic Epilepsy… A completely different thing to hear Frontal Lobe Epilepsy, Cerebral Cortex Malformation and can become Retractable in Children Like Him within an hour of meeting a fantastic Pediatric Neurologist who has probably seen it all… I realize that the future could become bleak and I accept that. I also realize that it can be just as wonderful if not better than I ever imagined and that is what I hope for. We are not there yet and have a long way to go, so for now I simply will take it one day at a time… Through much prayer and with a lot of faith we will go forward… I will try to stay positive! In the meantime, we have painted the bathroom, hall and living room… Hopefully tomorrow we will paint the kitchen. Something about painting always makes me feel better. I suppose it is an outward sign of the inward change that is happening. I am forever grateful for all the blessing I have in my life and Brynnon is indeed a special child. I am thankful that the Father thought enough of me to place him in my arms… I don’t have a problem with having him stay a child longer than usual, I love children… if I didn’t I would not have had six of them!  

~Denise

Brynnon (12) and Abigail (1)

Almost…

So, getting a little anxious about the Appointment (Thursday) to get the Neuropsychologist results for Brynnon… Seems like it has been 6 months waiting, but it has actually been 2. Of course I have some updating to do with him as well as far as the regressions we have seen in Brynnon since he was tested and had the major seizure. He still has not caught up back to where he was, which makes me wonder if it was permanent? Surely he will catch back up to where he was, but in the big picture the regressions are bigger than the catch ups, seems it takes forever to catch up. I was going through some of his home school from two years ago. It is so sad that his handwriting was actually better two years ago than it was even before the last major seizure. The computer schooling seems to help, as it does all the reading for him and doesn’t seem like what he calls “baby work.” The headphones drown out all the distractions in the household, which interferes greatly in his concentration. I hope if nothing else the neuropsychologist will have great positive things to say about Brynnon’s future. His future is what I worry about most. I realize that people who have Intellectual disabilities can live normal lives in society. I just worry that he will not be able to grow and flourish with the regressions happening. Just can;t seem to shake the feeling like we make all this progress only for a terrible seizure event to wipe it all away… There we are left to try to get it all back in again before we loose anything else…So Thursday is the BIG day for getting some answers concerning Brynnon’s learning journey…. 
 The 18th is the Neurologist appointment to get the results of the 24 hour EEG. I will also bring my videos of Brett and ask about his night time events. It is bothersome, as Brynnon did the same things before he was medicated and I am very afraid that it is the same thing. Scares the crap out of me, that Brett could have the same thing wrong…  I hope I am just paranoid and it’s nothing… That’s not what my gut says though. I hope he has better answers about what seizure types he is seeing and why his EEG was so erratic. I expected it to be normal while medicated… and I have yet to find a sleeping EEG that looks like his. I have looked at hundreds of them online… but not one looks like his. I will also be asking a lot more questions this time, as I know a lot more now. At the end of the visit I will have to tell them I need a copy of his records to bring to New Orleans for the Epilepsy clinic at Children’s Hospital. I hope if nothing else they will have answers… I just need to feel secure that everything is being done that can possibly be done to prevent anymore seizures or regression. While would  we are at it, I would like to know if it is or could be genetic and if Brett could possibly be showing early signs. 
 It is so frustrating not having the answers to so many questions, but it is exciting to think that sometime in the next month I may have most if not all of them!