Saturday, March 10, 2007

Warm and Sunny







We are currently experiencing some very warm weather here in Southern California. Today it is about 85° and tomorrow we are supposed to reach 90°. On days like this I'm so glad that we live here. My body temperature usually hovers around 96° or slightly lower. So I'm always cold-and Aaron always has to work at keeping me warm. So Aaron is thankful for the warm temperatures also. I'm sure these temperatures sound amazing to all of you in the Midwest who have had such a hard winter. Last weekend we had similar temperatures and Aaron and I were able to go to the beach. We found a beautiful beach that has great accessible trails along a cliff by the ocean. My wheelchair is not able to go on sand, so I missed that-but I can still be close to the ocean and enjoy its beauty. They do have wheelchairs with huge tires that go over sand and even in shallow water, but we have not ventured to try one of those yet. Maybe this summer...

I have a few things to update. First of all, Amy is doing much better! She is in a different hospital, her third one, but it really seems to be helping her. Her mom, Debbie, is in a great struggle to get Amy back to California. A few months ago she wrote to Governor Schwarzenegger (or "The Gover-nator") and to Congress persons in a last-ditch effort to bring Amy back to California. And in the last week she has actually succeeded in getting responses from the State officials. So keep praying for favor with these people. They are fighting the Medicaid system-it sounds impossible-but we know that with God all things are possible. The family is desperately hurting financially. Traveling back and forth to Las Vegas for almost a year now, almost every weekend, has been a huge expense. If any of you would like to donate money to this family, please go to Amy's web site and follow the instructions. www.freewebs.com/labagnara

The second thing I want to update you with is our dear friend Melissa. We wrote about Melissa while we were in the hospital. She is the young woman from our church that has been struggling for two years with a chronic pain disease. About six weeks ago her family drove an RV from Southern California to Philadelphia to go to a center there that specializes in Melissa's disease. In about a week's time the doctors and specialists were able to get Melissa's pain under control. For the last several weeks, Melissa has been completely pain-free!!! I don't think I can even convey in words the suffering that this poor young woman has gone through. She is only 20 years old and her life has been put on hold for the last two years. I have said numerous times that I would rather be paralyzed and in a wheelchair than to have the disease that Melissa has suffered with. But thanks be to God, that she is now able to resume the life that God has for her! I don't understand why she suffered so much when so many were praying. It seems senseless right now to think about why she would have to go through that. But maybe someday we will understand.

The third thing I wanted to update you on is not very good news. About three weeks ago my dad was diagnosed with lymphoma cancer. He went to the doctor to check for kidney stones and they discovered a massive tumor around his abdominal aorta and inferior vena cava. It is very large and is pressing into some major organs. About a week ago they began an aggressive form of chemotherapy. The tumor is too large and too intertwined to be operable. The chemo will happen every three weeks for the next six months with periodic CT scans to determine the size of the tumor. Please pray for my dad and my mom as they go through this difficult time. Also please pray for my brother Dustin, who is in Iraq. It's a difficult time to be away.

As far as my schooling goes, I should be completely finished April 15! I am two papers away from having my Masters of Divinity.

Aaron is doing very well. He is in his busy time from March until May with numerous concerts and festivals. He is also currently enjoying his new Macbook computer and all of the widgets that are available! He doesn't know what to do with all of the new games! It's like overstimulation for his brain.

And the pictures above are of my adorable nephew, Joshua Aaron Fusek. He's rapidly approaching 6 months of age! Thanks for the pictures John and Cyndi! (This was my first attempt at posting pictures.)

Thanks for reading and thank you for your prayers. Please feel free to comment-it helps us to know who is still checking the blog!

Love, Kari

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

Kari & Aaron,
It is so good to hear about how things are. We will continue to pray for you and yours and all those that you care for.
We love you.
The Hall's

heather said...

Dear Kari,
Thanks so much for all of the news! I'm so sad to hear about your dad. I will definitely add your parents to my prayer list. I know it looks bad, but that's just when God gets to show off a little. :O)
Your nephew is TOO cute... and I totally see Cyndi in his little face. What a doll! And that's funny about Aaron's brain being on overload... or however you said it... cute.
I love you. I need to TALK to you sometime soon!
You're the best!!!
Tell Aaron hi for me too!
LOVE YOU TONS,
heather

Alice Guzman said...

Hi, it's Aaron's mom! Do I actually get to be the first to comment on your wonderful news? I am overjoyed to hear the great news about both Melissa and Amy. I do know that the suffering makes each pain-free day that much sweeter. I'll keep praying for them both.

We're enjoying our first venture into 50-degree weather --- probably even more than you're enjoying your greater warmth. It's like the pain - each snow and ice-filled day makes the thaw that much sweeter.

I hate to see what overstimulation for Aaron's brain looks like. It's always seemed pretty overstimulated to me. Actually, I'd like to see him a little frustrated with his computer for a while to see what life is like for us mere mortals.

Sorry that the news isn't good about your dad, Kari. Your whole family is in my prayers.

Lots of love to you both. Enjoy your darling namesake nephew.

Mom

Anonymous said...

Hey Kari,
So good to hear from you. Thanks for the update. I check your site all the time and rarely have enough uninterrupted time to leave a coherent comment!

I'm so sorry to hear about your Dad. You continue to be in my prayers and I'll add your Dad to the list whenever I think of you.

Much love,
Tonya

P.S. Your nephew is adorable!

authorstalker said...

Kari,

I have been keeping up with the blog. Congratulations on your new nephew.

Matthew and Lisa are expecting son #3 in July. They just learned the gender last week. They waited to be surprised with the first two. Lisa braggs on her webite that she will remain the undisputed queen of the castle. I'll pray for your dad and Dusty.

Love,
Kate Belt

Karla said...

Kari-
I just recently found your blog again and started reading. I have thought about you so much since our G'ville days together and prayed for you so much since your accident. Cyndi kept me updated during the worst part of your ordeal.
I'm so glad to see how God continues to bless you and use your amazing spirit to reach others.
And every time I eat Dots candy, I think of you and "toilet episode" in Burritt Annex!
Love Always,
Karla

Anonymous said...

Kari I laughed out loud at Aaron's brain being overstimulated at all the games...you know why :)

Great to hear all of the good news and we will add your dad to our prayers.

Love,
Allison Ridenour

Christina said...

Yep, still reading! And still praying! We are supposed to enjoy a 74 degree day tomorrow...but then back to 50s.

I too echo the comments about your Dad. I'm sure you are an encouragement to him as you are to so many people!

And tell Aaron, welcome to the MacBook club! After my first was stolen (at a Christian conference, mind you!), I'm enjoying my second (thanks to insurance). Tell Aaron to do "apple shift 4" - you can take a picture of anything on the screen.

Time to finish prepping for school tomorrow.

Take care,
Christina (and Scott) Beatty

Kathy Timmers said...

Hi Kari & Aaron,
How wonderful to hear you guys are also enjoying beautiful weather and have already gotten in some beach time. It got up into the 60's here yesterday with spots of sunshine and that does do soooo much for not only warming our bodies but our spirits, too, doesn't it! In my travels over the weekend, I spotted some little green shoots here and there pushing out of the ground, always a sign that spring and new life are on their way.

Thanks for sharing all of the news. What an answer to prayer for Melissa, praise God! We will continue to pray for
Amy and her situation, that those that can make a difference and get her home will open their hearts and use their influence.

I had a long chat with Cyndi over the weekend and she filled me in on your family, will be praying for the chemo to be like a mighty army and take down that tumor!!!! and that your mom regains her strength after being so sick. Will also keep lifting Dustin up, for God to keep him safe and that he can have regular contact with you all.

Wow, Kari- you will be done with school in just a few weeks! You go, girl! We are so proud of you, despite everything that has come your way you have stuck with it, with faith and determination.

I laughed long and hard at the comments about Aaron and his Macbook. Another brainiac with a Macbook in his hands- look out! Our John looooves his and brings it with him everytime he comes down for a visit and delights in showing us all it can do. He took some pictures of the two of us making a big mess in the kitchen last time with it, that was great fun! Aaron, you have hours and hours and hours of enjoyment ahead of you :-)

Just as I told Cyndi I wish I could have been sitting and chatting with her instead of over the phone (with that gorgeous nephew of yours in my lap, of course- I want to smooch all over him!)I so wish I could be sitting with you, enjoying the sunshine and catching up. Maybe a couple of the SCFMC homegirls and me can cruise on out there in the KT Cruiser over the summer :-)
(I just bought a Chrysler PT Cruiser and Derin dubbed it the "KT Cruiser" and it's stuck!)

And am anxious to hear how your new caretaker is working out- have been praying she has quickly and easily become your hands and feet.

Have enjoyed my cup of coffee and catching up time but got to get a move on and get ready for work :-(
Much love to you both,
KT

Anonymous said...

Kimmi, Kari let's talk sometime -email me your info: kimmi94@hotmail.com

Katie (Bost) Heuer said...

Hi Kari,
Thanks for all of the updates. It's wonderful to hear that Amy is doing better and that Melissa is pain-free. ...what a blessing!

Best of luck with your last 2 papers! The end is in sight!! We're keeping you, Aaron, and your family in our prayers.

Love, Katie and Ty

Anonymous said...

Hi Kari & Aaron,

I just read through the last two or three blogs and was happy to hear of the progress and healing of your two friends Amy and Melissa. I'm so saddened to read of your Dad's fight with cancer. He will continue to be in our prayers. May God strengthen your whole family as you stand by him and your Mom.

Loved the pictures of your new little nephew. What a doll!!! We are happy for all of you and I'm sure you'll have lots of enjoyment with him now and in the years to come.

I haven't looked in on your blog for over 2 weeks as I've been in the hospital for 2 weeks and 3 days dealing with deep vein clots. I just got home this afternoon. Praise God for His watch-care over the situation as it was a surprise and very unexpected.

Congratulations on the near completion of your DV degree. Our oldest son, Norm Jr, is working on his Dissertation for his Doctoral Degree. He works at Houston Baptist University as Vice President in charge of Student Affairs and that's why we moved to TX to be near our 2 grandkids and help take care of them while their parents work.

Well, I'm so thankful to hear how God is helping you and Aaron and may you be blest each day with His love and presence.

Love & Prayers,
Peggy Slosted
(1st cousin to your Dad)

Anonymous said...

Hi Kari,
I appreciate you so much! By the way did you get my phone message a few days ago?? We are going to the Harvest church in Riverside Sunday(this) and would like to come over and have lunch with you if possible. Can you let us know? Love Aunt Jinny

Diana Temple said...

Hey Kari,
It's always good to get to read any update that you post. The swapfest box I promised is sitting in my hallway at home! It will come!! Your Nephew is so cute! I just got a new one on Monday night! My brother is a dad! So weird! Have a great day, and enjoy the good weather!
Love - Diana

Anonymous said...

Kari & Aaron,

Thank you for always sharing your life... the good and the difficult times. You are both very special people to us. We love you very much. XOXO

The D'Antonio Family

Anonymous said...

Kari and Aaron -

We are always glad to get an update on the two of you; Alice keeps us up to date also, so we can in turn keep all of Aaron's old Spring Street neighbors informed, but it's still good to read your own words. Your strength has been an inspiration to many whom you've never even met.

Love, Bill and Kathy Guy

p.s. your nephew is adorable

Anonymous said...

I'm still checking. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.

Blessings,
Candi
Craig Hospital

Julie Phend said...

Kari and Aaron,
I haven't read your updates for quite awhile (though I hear about you often from Alice. I was thrilled to know that you are doing so well and that you are finishing school, Kari. That is awesome! And reading your past blogs made me realize that I haven't passed on my condolences about Bryan to you. We were still in London when the accident happened and so weren't able to come to the visitation and funeral. I will always regret that. Bless you--you are an inspiration!
Julie Phend

Anonymous said...

Hi Kari..

My name is Karen.. I am a follower of your story as well as Amys.. You mentioned your church is having a rummage sale for AMy..I have some items to donate..Is that possible? If so, where do I take the items? Your progress is such a testimony to faith, it has blessed me, and thru you I have been able to meet Amy :-) that was also a huge blessing to me.. I hope to hear back from you..
karen.grossjan@verizon.net
Blessings to you..
Karen

Anonymous said...

Hi Kari and Aaron,
Of course we are still checking and praying for you.
Happy Birthday to you!!!
I hope you had a lovely day and feel loved (even though your birthday card is still sitting on my desk - but I know that doesn't surprise you).
Keep in touch,
Love,
Jan Yessa

Diane Brodeen said...

Hi, Kari & Aaron. My last few attempts at comments to you haven't gone through. You and your family remain in my prayers.---Diane Brodeen, Riverside

Jason & Leigh said...

Kari and Aaron,
I think of you often and miss the Cali weather. I am so proud of you to finish school. I think of you both almost daily and pray God will give you both strength for today and hope for tomorrow.Enjoy the beach for me! xxxooo Praying for you and the fam...
Leigh

Tara (Giebelhausen) Oyler said...

Kari and Aaron,

I am so glad to hear that you are doing so well. It is still not fair that you get gorgeous weather, however! May God continue to bless you and keep you happy and safe and also provide peace of mind for your troubles.

Olga said...

Hello Kari,

I have been checking your blog since I learned what has happened to you some while ago. I know it has been a long time (10 years!!!) since we spent some time together, but the time with you while in the States was the best I've had, and even though you might not remember me, I think of you often and wonder how you are with all the things that has happened. Anyway, my partner applied for a PostDoc position in San Diego, CA, and there is some chance we might be spending about a year there, so maybe I will get to visit you in person sometime next year! Well, if you ever feel bored, you may check out my blog at http://fotolga.blogspot.com/
There's not much there apart from some super-cute pictures of our 4-months old dog and of a flat we are doing up... but hey. Lots of love, Olga (from Prague, Czech Republic, who lived with the Coxes, do you need any further hints? :-) [amost forgot-if you wanted to get in touch, you may find my contact details at my "working blog", fotolga.blogspirit.com]

Morphea said...

Hello, Kari and Aaron. I'm now fully caught up on your blog writings. My heart goes out to you and your family. You've certainly had your share of sorrow in the last few years, and you're both in my thoughts very often, as is your father.

Cyndi's son is beautiful. Well done posting the pictures! Love to her from me.

Cerise

Anonymous said...

Hi Kari
Your nephew is too cute, I'm glad to hear things are going well with you. Sorry to hear about your dad we will lift him in our prayers. I'm glad the warm weather suits you well. Going to the beach sounds good right about now!!!!!!
Take care of your self, remeber Aaron you have to slow down & take time for yourself!!!!!! No one expects you to be superman. So take time for yourself. Its very important to take care of yourself!
Love you both
Doni