Please Help

A fund has been set up through Paypal for Mark, Scarlet and the girls.

Go to Login to your Paypal account, or just click on the send money tab. You don't have to have a Paypal account to donate.

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If you have any questions or don't want to donate by Paypal, please email us at

Thank you so much for love, concern and prayers on their behalf.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Fa la la la la la la

I would love to post some pictures from Christmas day, but I don't have any. First off, I had strep over the Christmas weekend. And when you feel THAT bad, photos are your least important item to think of. Second, the memory card on my camera was full. This in turn became the most lackluster Christmas we've ever had.

Which is sad really. We were all so looking forward to it as we didn't get to celebrate together last year. Mark barely remembers Christmas last year, so we wanted it to be pretty special. But when you mix depression in with get a pretty unexciting event. Although the adults were lacking in Christmas enthusiasm, the girls enjoyed it thoroughly.

We were also visited by some of Santa's elves. When I opened the door and they just kept bringing in bag after bag of gifts, I was quite overwhelmed. It's amazing to me that even a year after our life changing events, people still want to help and serve if they can. It's truly humbling to be on the receiving end. Still.

Mark was pretty depressed this Holiday season as he felt worthless and unable to provide the kind of Christmas he would have liked. He did manage to get me two special gifts from his heart. I enjoyed some time off work as my mom was enjoying the last two weeks of December on the farm in Texas. Despite the sickness and was wonderful to be together to celebrate this very glorious season of our Savior's birth.

Blessings of the Week: Jesus Christ and penicillin

Monday, December 19, 2011

Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha......

You know that scene in Money Pit where Tom Hanks is filling the bathtub and it falls through the floor and he stands there for a second and then starts laughing hysterically because he's had it? Well that was me, yesterday, on our way to the emergency room. Mark was a little freaked out and all I could do was laugh and look Heavenward and say to the Lord, "Really?"

Mark was up all night the night before coughing. I thought he had acid reflux, so I went out to sleep on the couch. Not even an hour later he was waking me up because he was shivering uncontrollably. He was freaking out that he was going to have a seizure. So we got in the bed and snuggled together until he warmed back up and the shivering stopped. He started snoring so I went back out to the couch. I think I was out there for two hours this time and here he came again. So we got back in the bed together and I was rubbing his neck and thinking, "He feels kind of hot." Well he WAS hot...102 degrees of hot. During his coughing fits he had said he was nauseaus and wanted a vomit bowl. He never thew up but was spitting out what he was coughing up. It was brown. I've never seen that before, my mom who worked in a doctors' office for more than 20 years had never seen that before. She said it didn't look like blood, but it definitely wasn't normal. So we dropped the girls off at church and headed to Instacare. We took a sample of the brown phlegm and when Mark showed it to them they said they couldn't take care of him and he needed to go to the hospital. So naturally, this made Mark a little nervous. I just started laughing. Not quite as hysterically as Tom Hanks, but laughing none the less. I'm sure Mark thought I was losing it. I probably was.

But this little trip to the hospital comes on the heels of a very sleep-deprived, stressful week. Remember back in October when we tried to go to the neighbors cabin and Mark had an anxiety attack and then couldn't control his muscle spasms for a few nights? That happened again this last week. Only it was worse. This time I videoed him laying in the bed and doing these full body twitches. I wanted to show the doctor exactly what we were dealing with. These twitches lasted three nights, the third night being the worst. We went to see the neurologist and all he could say was that it's because of the brain injury and it's induced by stress from his anxiety attacks. He gave us a prescription that should work to calm his body and brain down enough to be able to sleep. It worked. But we were hungover for a couple of days because we were trying to catch up on sleep. When these sorts of things happen and Mark has to spend a lot of time resting and sleeping, it does a number on his mental and emotional state. The feelings of worthlessness and depression set in.

So now you can understand why I was laughing. It's not funny at all. But at that time it seemed to be my only coping mechanism. The docs took a chest x-ray and drew blood to run tests. The x-ray didn't show anything, his white blood count was normal, but he did have some inflamation. So they loaded him up on Rocefin and saline and sent us home. They initially thought they were going to admit him, which REALLY frustrated me as I didn't want to spend another Christmas in the hospital, but after looking at all of the test results, they couldn't find a medical reason to keep him. They don't know if it's pneumonia or influenza. Most likely influenza because it just started the night before. So we're keeping a close eye on him and bathing in sanitizer.

If you haven't seen Money Pit, I highly recommend it. If for nothing more than that scene in the bathroom.

Blessing of the Week: sleep

Friday, December 2, 2011

Modern Day Miracle

I was told by one of the medical professionals helping us through all of this that the anniversary date of the injury would be a difficult and emotional day. I told him I had been preparing for a while, knowing that it would be difficult, and had been trying to find a way for us to get through it without it being TOO difficult. As I posted earlier when my mom was in the hospital, we decided that I would make a cake and deliver it to the ICU as a thank you to all of the nurses, doctors and therapists that helped save Mark's life.

Guess what....the doctor was right! But what I did notice is that for two weeks preceeding the anniversary date, I was downright ornery. I wasn't particularly emotional. I was just ornery, angry and bitter. All of the feelings came rushing back in a tornado of emotions. But as I worked on the cake, the feelings would subside. I took today off so I could finish the cake and we could deliver it to them. Here it is:

Funny story: This cake was so heavy that by the time I got inside the hospital I couldn't carry it anymore. Mark grabbed a wheelchair and I sat down with it on my lap as he wheeled me up to the ICU floor. We went during shift change hours of 5-7 so that we could catch as many people as possible. It was amazing how many of the people that worked on him were there and COMPLETELY remembered him. At first they looked at him, then looked at me, then looked back at him. They recognized me, and then realized who he was, as he looks a great deal differently than he did the last time they saw him. They kept referring to him as Rm 203. You know you're bad when even the nurses that didn't help you knew who you were because everyone talked about how bad Rm 203 was and that he wasn't expected to live. Mark made a grand speech about how grateful he is for all of their help. He told them that even though they are just doing their job, it meant the world to him and his family. They were amazed by the cake, taking pictures of it, pictures of Mark & me with the cake. Then they thanked us for coming back. They told us that they get their patients well enough to move to another part of the hospital and then never know what the outcome was. They couldn't believe that Rm 203 was walking and talking and able to express himself so adequately. They were thrilled to see that he was doing so well.

As Mark rolled me out of the ICU, I felt much joy in my heart. I wondered if it would be difficult for me to be there, to see the hallways, the room, to smell the odors, to hear the sounds. But it wasn't. I was grateful that we weren't there anymore, and we have a grand success story. I was grateful that we had an opportunity to give something back to them, even if was just our gratitude and cake. I believe it meant the world to them. And that's all we wanted out of this gesture.

I will now take the opportunity to thank all of YOU for your generosity. Without your prayers, fasting, monetary donations, sacrifices of your time, your friendship and love, your prayers...and did I mention prayers?...we would have never survived this past year. We know that the Lord performed miracles on our behalf. And He did that through all of you, and the doctors and nurses. While He was not able to reach down and stop the free agency choices of those that nearly killed Mark, He WAS and IS able to bless him beyond measure to recover and regain some level of quality of life. We have hurt and lost much. But have gained a lot in return. And most of that gain will go with us beyond the veil. We thank you, we appreciate you, and we love you.

Blessing of the Week: Miracles

Thursday, December 1, 2011

A Priceless Gift

One year ago, today, I almost lost the most important person in my life. I created this blog in order to keep our friends and loved one abreast of what was happening, as a record of our lives, and an outlet for my emotions, thoughts and feelings. As friends and loved ones posted our blog information on their Facebook pages, perfect strangers to our little family came out of the woodworks to help in any way that they could. One of those people is Amanda Livingston of Livingston Photography in Nephi, Utah. Her gift did not come came almost one year later. And we are so very grateful for it. There was a time in the long dark hours between December 1st and 2nd that I didn't know if I'd ever have another complete family picture. After the horrific year we have endured and continue to endure, we were give the priceless gift of another record of our lives in her gift of a photography session. She does a wonderful job and I recommend her to EVERYONE! Thank you Amanda. You will never know what this gift means to us. It truly is priceless.

Blessing of the Day: permanent records

Check out Amanda's work at