Saturday, June 22, 2013

General Fulton Update

Hello everyone! Generally my silence means life is busy- which is a good thing. Busy is our 'normal' around here and we all are ready for more 'normal' to be sure!

We are finishing up school as best we can, although we are still a bit behind. I am also continuing to pursue my clinical master's certification in herbal medicine in hopes of better understanding how to help Fulton heal. God is so good to have given us so many medicinal remedies! I just have to take the time to do all the trial and error it will take to find out what will work best for his head wounds and his scar tissue.

Fulton's head has been keeping us on our toes lately. For awhile there, it was getting so much better. He could even 'wash' his own head and proudly show us. "Look Mom!" rub rub "I can do it myself!"

The antifungals and calendula treatments were working so well and we really hoped we were finally going to be through with the head wounds and get to get him back into his face mask. The bulging tissues were receding and the redness was going away. We even happily cancelled our appointment in Galveston a little over a week ago, since they only wanted to see him if there was no improvement.

But now the worst areas have begun to open up, like a crown of thorns around his head. Tears and pain have taken over once again and he is angry and yet very snuggly now. I have resumed part of the headcare duties, since Fulton is now mad at Jay pretty much all the time for 'hurting his head'. Jay is a little more firm and does not take any nonsense from Fulton, and this usually results in a very good scrubbing (which is needed) but a very angry 5-year-old.

His tummy hurts and his appetite is diminished. We are so grateful for the case of Kid Essentials calorie booster we received in the mail the other day, as his weight is beginning to go down. If he loses too much weight, he may have to be readmitted until they can get him eating again. (I saw it happen from time to time when we were still there - and they were always talked about in hushed tones as though the parents were doing something awful to their children. I used to think, "How can you let your child lose weight?" But now I understand. And it is a bit frightening.) Let us pray it does not get that bad!

Fulton and I are headed back to Galveston next week for a quick clinic appointment to decide how much head work they will be doing in July. I so wanted to show them his improvements! :( He also needs to get remeasured for his pressure garments. Unfortunately the custom garments we received in the mail the other day were too loose around his upper chest and shoulder areas, and since he has significant scarring there (especially on the back of his shoulder) it is vital that the garments fit tightly. They warned me that we could be going there several times a month in the beginning. I understand why it has to be this way, but it sure does rupture the normal flow of homelife.

Please, for those of you who are still here, please pray that his head finally heals! His face, at this point, is a lost cause, since the critical time for him to wear his facemask has now passed. The scars will be large and mostly permanent. I know there is a reason why this is happening - I am just having a hard time figuring it out. I have since lost my devotion to the Holy Face of Jesus. I always seem to do better when I can separate myself from worldly ways, so perhaps I need to begin again and keep myself better focused on my faith instead of on the day to day trials. A week in a cloistered convent sounds heavenly right about now! I must regroup and recharge, and persevere in faith!

Wasn't our dear Papa BXVI so wise to proclaim this year the Year of Faith? Who knew?

Thank you all for your continued prayers and for fulfilling a few of our items on the Wish List. They are truly helping to ease some of this burden - and Fulton thinks it is funny that his head bandages magically appeared in a box on our porch! LOL!

Have a blessed weekend everyone, and I will keep you posted on our trip down South next week!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Schooltime Already?


Just a quick post before bed.  I have a big day of planning and organizing tomorrow, and since Jay will be home, I hope to really take advantage of the help!

School has been a bit crazy the past few months for obvious reasons.  We were already a bit behind before the accident, and with Fulton's burn happening soon after Christmas, we were not in full school mode anyway.  Since returning, things have not gotten much better, as I am notoriously horrible at prioritizing my time. 

So here we are, the ides of June, and only one semester into last year's school year!  The children have since restarted their math lessons, which is good, but now I need to integrate more classes each day.  Praise God, Ryan finished up the last of his classes before flying off to Arizona to jump out of airplanes and train for deep water rescue (be still my pounding heart!) but there are other Poppe children who still need a lot of help.  Jay has been blessed with the opportunity to change his work schedule around - at least for the time being - to help take care of Fulton's morning and evening care.  His head continues to make progress, though the healing is slow.  There will be multiple trips back to Galveston this summer and fall, each requiring one or both of us to be away, so if anyone has any tips on how to get this done, I'm all ears!

We use Mother of Divine Grace curriculum and have enrolled the children so I have more accountability and the children will have official transcripts when they graduate.  I am so happy we decided to enroll!  My family counselor has done so much to pull me out of panic mode and keep me from despair, and offers me realistic solutions to schooling problems as they come up.  If for no other reason, I highly recommend MODG for the support they offer!  While signing them up for classes will probably be far beyond our budget this year, at least I know I can call my counselor when I get stuck.

My plan of attack is to get the children through Week 24 by the end of the summer.  I have some learning hurdles to overcome this year as well as time issues, so once again the Poppe family could use a few prayers.  I know you all are very practiced at that by now!  :)

I know that through Him all things are possible - I just can't wait to see how this is all going to work out!  I am always ready for miracles!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Happy Birthday, Fulton!


June is a busy month for celebrating.  Fulton, Ryan and Marialina all have birthdays this month, plus Father's Day, and even a high school graduation to toss into the mix this year.

But today (June 10) is all about Fulton.

Today is a special day for Jay and I, as we silently acknowledged that this birthday might not have come at all.  For a few weeks, Fulton was touch and go at the hospital and I feared more than a few nights that he would not be with us when I returned to his room in the morning.  So many nights I slept in the hospital 'dorm room' 2 floors above him, willing the ventilator to keep him breathing and praying the night nurse would not leave his side.  And praying even harder that no nurse would come knocking on my door.  Praise God and the Blessed Mother he survived! 

SO needless to say, there were some pretty wet eyes this morning as we all wished him a happy birthday!

We do birthdays in a very low key way here overall.  2 presents from Mom and Dad and 2 from my mother, a special trip to Chucky Cheese (boys only - none of us girls were allowed!  LOL!) and dinner at La Fiesta.  We came home to cupcakes and ice cream and the blessed news that he would not have to sleep in his supersuit.  Not that we planned on 'treating' him to this - I actually forgot to wash all his supersuits today and they take more than a day to dry, so TA-DA!  Instant birthday surprise!  **sigh**

I would love to post a mini photo timeline of Fulton, but our computer crashed and all his photos were stored in it.  :'(  But I do have a few in this computer, so I will see what I am able to post here.

Thank you all yet again for your prayers - they are truly cherished!

He was always a little guy!

Shannon was and always will be his favorite!

Always the center of attention
And always ready for a smile
Yet ever mindful of the serious side of life
And willing to take on the role of Big Brother
I pray it is not his tragedy that defines him

But rather with our love surrounding him

May the fire be the source of refinement that he may become all he was meant to be