Friday, August 5, 2011

A Year in the Life

It’s hard to explain but when I look back on this year, it feels like it's actually been 3 years. It felt like time was in slow motion. Maybe that’s how we were able to get through each difficult moment over the last 400 days.

Our daughter Catherine was married just 1 year ago.

It’s like a dream come true that our son Phillip moved here to Portland with his wife to start his new career.

It doesn’t seem possible that all of a sudden my ‘baby boy’ will be starting high school.

Our family will grow with 2 new ‘additions' in the next week.

And I never imagined that after all she has endured, Mary would be working so soon, be engaged to be married, and starting classes back at BYU in less than a month.

Each of us are a different person than we were just one year ago. We are better and stronger because of this past year together.

A Grand Son!

Phillip and Jessica will bring a son into the world any moment now! He will be our first grandchild. He truly represents a new beginning for all of us. We are so excited to meet him and welcome him into our family!

They live and work in Lake Oswego, OR which is a short drive from us. They both work for Precoa~the nations leading funeral planning insurance company. Phillip is their lead video and media specialist helping to expand the company through commercials, videos, and other media. Jessica does technical support and internal event planning.

They are the real life version of Jim and Pam from ‘The Office!’

Love and Other Drugs

Catherine and Kris have had a whirlwind newlywed year. They both graduated from BYU in April. Catherine graduated in Exercise Science, with emphasis on ‘Wellness’. She was hired right out of school by a pharmaceutical company called Meda Pharmaceuticals. She survived 2 months of intense training and is now a pharmaceutical sales rep, or as they say in the biz, a ‘Pharma.’ She calls on 8-10 doctors each day and loves it! Her territory is in Sacramento, CA and includes Stockton, the town I grew up in!

Kris graduated in finance and has been the top salesman in his summer Dish/Direct TV sales job. He is so supportive of Catherine’s new career and loves being back in his home state!

The Freshman

Thomas completed middle school and will be our 4th and final student at Skyview High School. It has been a classic childhood dream to have all of our kids attend all 13 years of school within a mile of our home. Thomas will play freshman football and is the freshman representative for the Associated Student Body. He is following in each of his siblings footsteps and also making some new paths of his own!

Thomas just finished an authentic pioneer trek in the high desert of Washington with 150 youth. It was set in the 1800’s complete with his clothing and the food they cooked out on the range. He pushed his teams' handcart along with another boy for 23 long miles over the course of 3 days. Lifelong lessons were learned and he seemed to stand a little taller when he returned back to the comforts of home.

Last week he went to Boy Scout camp, inching closer to earning his Life and will spend next week on a 100 mile bike trip with his troop and his dad!

The Princess Bride

Mary’s real life fairy tale continues. She is engaged to Zane Curtis and will be married in the Portland, Oregon LDS temple on August 13. She has known that he was ‘the one’ from the day she woke up from her brain surgery in January. He was by her side then and he will continue to be as they begin their happy~forever~after.

Mary now works for BYU Independent Study in customer service and also heads up several special projects teams. She received a scholarship from BYU and will begin classes this fall.

We are so impressed with her sheer determination and strength.

Zane has 1 year left at BYU and then they will head off to begin his medical school. Mary is studying political science and will continue her schooling and work wherever they end up a year from now.

The Miracle Network

On June 19, 2011, we sat together as a family and reminisced about the milestone that Mary had reached on her 1 year anniversary. It was also Father’s Day and there was no place else that Mary would rather be on such a significant day in her life and in ours.

Mary suffered a massive brain hemorrhage on June 19, 2010.

Then through difficult research and weighted decision, she underwent a craniotomy to remove the AVM which had caused the hemorrhage. She received world renowned care at the hands of a highly skilled surgeon in San Francisco at UCSF.

The surgery was flawless! But it was an extremely difficult recovery that took a full 6 months. Mary will continue with some recovery over the next 6 months. But ultimately, she has come through this with beautiful results.

We sat there together on that first anniversary and shared our heartfelt gratitude. We acknowledged that there is no denying. There is no question. There is no doubt.

Mary is a miracle! She survived a hemorrhage that is usually fatal. Then she came through a risky surgery that invaded the Sylvian Fissure of her brain. The one place where most highly skilled vascular neurosurgeons will not go.

But Dr. Lawton was prepared. And he did go there. And she did recover. She got her life back~miraculously!

Leaving the Nest

So here I am~letting go~again. The summer after her freshman year at BYU, I had a pressing goal: grow closer to Mary and strengthen our love and friendship. I knew that the clock was ticking and I was determined to make that summer really matter.

Be careful what you wish for!

2 months after I set that goal, Mary’s AVM bled. In one year, we became closer than we ever were.

Mary’s example of courage and real life heroic strength, has made me dig deep and do all I can to be a better person. I witnessed her life hanging in the balance multiple times, and now I know what really matters.

Mary’s rapid recovery and the blessing of Zane in her life have given her the wings to fly. But it is bittersweet for me to let her go, again.

This trial gave me the rare chance to have a whole year with her and to be the mom that she really needed me to be.

And suddenly~time is moving much faster now. The slow motion has faded. Mary is ready and soon, she will fly away!

Monday, March 14, 2011

7 Weeks Later~She’s Cured!

Dr. Lawton & Mary


The first time I ever spoke to Dr. Lawton, he said, ‘Surgery is a good option for Mary. She could have her life back 7 weeks from the day we remove the AVM.’

Last Friday, March 11, was 7 weeks from her surgery at UCSF. We had a post op visit with Dr. Lawton the week before. Her surgery was a complete success with a perfect outcome. She has been cleared to resume all of her activities. Mary is cured!

What words can be said to the man who has spent his whole career perfecting his work in order to save my daughter? I tried to thank him that day without getting emotional. He smiled. He knows how grateful I am. He told us he loves his job! What a success story for him. What a blessing for Mary. For us.

We gave Dr. Lawton a special message from Catherine, ‘You are a real hero to our family.’

Mary Had a Little Lamb

In the middle of her senior year, Mary became determined to get a puppy. We already had a dog! Rosie our golden retriever. Mary would be leaving for college 8 months later. Why would we get a new dog?!

Then she got Thomas on board. They researched and scouted the local animal shelter every day. Then they found a white puppy. A lab/retriever mix. The only white one out of a mix of 6 black puppies.

Then they sent me pictures~I melted. Or as Brad would say, I caved!

The first year of training Maggie was a huge ordeal. She was a challenge. But she became invaluable in 1 short year. She is a great running partner. She is an alert watch dog.

But most important of all, she has been a blessing to Mary in her recovery.

From the first moment Mary came home from the hospital, Maggie was calm and gentle. She knew she needed to be careful around Mary. She would stand or lay near Mary and stand watch. Mary spent many hours with Maggie next to her~giving and receiving unconditional love.

Just like all of us, Maggie had changed. And like us, she was better!


Be Prepared.

Our family is big on scouting. Brad was scoutmaster for 5 years and is an Eagle Scout Mentor in our council; Phillip and Kris are Eagle Scouts and Thomas is well on his way. My Dad was scoutmaster, and my brothers are scouts including an Eagle Scout.

Being prepared is not only the Boy Scout Motto, it is a way of life for our family.

I have evaluated myself over this past year. Could I have been better prepared to be the mom that Mary needed? There is no way you can prepare adequately for your family member to have a life changing illness. But I have learned so much this year:

~Staying out of debt will help you be prepared financially, in case you need to care for a loved one.

~Could you stop your current life to care for a family member full time, long term?

~Are you striving to have positive relationships with family and friends? It is key to have their support during any sort of personal trial.

~Are you keeping yourself healthy in case you have to help a family member in need?

~How is your faith? Are you striving to have a healthy spiritual life so that if you ever truly need to rely on prayer, you are already confident in your faith?


There were a few simple pleasures that helped Mary survive many difficult hours~walks on our trail~Maggie~movies~kettle corn~The Office~music~The West Wing~fruit~texting~soft blankets~Burgerville…

But the immense pain that she endured both after the hemorrhage and after her brain surgery, called for some big therapy. In both situations, during many difficult hours, we would talk about Hawaii. It helped to distract Mary when we would talk about future plans to go there and how much she would love the sand, sun, and the blue water.

While she was suffering through so much pain after her surgery, she reminded us about our promise to go with her to Hawaii. Before we even left UCSF, we began to make plans for a celebration trip.

One month later, we were able to stay in a co-worker’s rental home on the north shore of Oahu for a week. Mary invited Zane because of the significant role he played in her choice of surgery and his commitment to her successful recovery.

There could not have been better therapy than being in paradise together! It was a motivator for Mary in the days and weeks leading up to it and it has been a cherished memory for all of since.

Second Chances

Imagine having the chance to take nearly a year to focus on your daughter. To stop everything in your life and take care of her. Spend every day with her. And really get to know her.

I had a choice: This was an opportunity that I could resent, or embrace. Mary’s difficult illness gave me the chance to be the best mom that I could be to her. We have become close friends. We have a trust and love for each other that could only come about through such a great challenge.

I regret all the pain and suffering she has endured. And the year of her life lost to recovery. But I am so grateful for the year I had to be her mom all over again.

Mary & Zane

Merry Happy

Mary is able to spend some time in Provo. Zane’s wonderful parents invited her to come stay in their home. He flew out here one way and then drove with Mary 800 miles back to Provo in Mary’s Honda.

This wonderful opportunity allows Mary to spend time with Zane and his family, Catherine and Kris, and begin to adjust being away from home after spending nearly a full year recovering here.

She is taking 2 classes online already! So she is keeping busy with those. She has become a great cook and loves trying out new healthy recipes. She can exercise and workout! She can drive!

The goal is that she will be living back in Provo for the spring term and possibly even have a part time job along with her online classes.

Has this road been easy? No. She has endured more than I would ever be comfortable to share here. But she is such an example of courage and bravery to all of us. She ‘wears’ her scar like a badge of honor!

Mary has been blessed with a perfect outcome from a deadly illness. She defied all the odds against her. She faced her greatest fears and arose a champion!

There is still hope in our world. There is still strength in numbers~through your combined faith, prayers, and love.

Mary is determined to live Happily Ever After!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

I Left My AVM in San Francisco!

“I Left My AVM~in San Francisco…” (To the tune of “I Left My Heart~in San Francisco…”)

We had a sudden announcement from Mary’s doctors that she would be released. We could hardly believe it~she had barely eaten in 6 days. She could barely even sip through a straw. Her pain level was at a 9-10. She had just opened her eyes for the first time since Friday night. There was still nothing we could do that brought her comfort. But she was ‘stable’ so they felt she could recover just as easily at home.

So needless to say, we felt ill prepared to take our fragile Mary out of this safe place. Now we had some quick, big decisions to make. Mary wanted to go home. That was made clear. Dr. Lawton told us that the best place for her to recover is in her own home. So we took one night in a hotel to be sure.

By morning we felt sure of a decision. Taking her home would be a difficult journey for just a few hours, but the payoff would be great. So we made our way through TSA and all the tangles of security. Imagine a mom pleading with TSA officials to let her daughter not have to take off her jacket, shoes and hat. Imagine them still forcing her to make her way through the metal detector. Imagine how she felt with all those people around. Mary had only walked a short distance a few times since surgery! Her eyes still remained closed for much of the time because they are so sensitive to light.

Her head and entire body were still in great pain. This was yet another thing she had to endure.

But by the time we were picked up by Jessica at the Portland Airport, I could see Mary starting to warm up. She signed ‘Thank you, Mom’ to me in the car. She had a decent sleep that first night. Home felt much better than the constant beeping of I.V. alarms and continual nurse checks.

I’m so grateful that home is where Mary chose to be when she needed it most.

Xena~Warrior Princess

Mary is the bravest, most courageous person I know. I have sat in stadiums and watched her as she warmed up and prepared herself to run the powerful 400m countless times. I have watched her battle the toughest opponents head to head and toe to toe in hundreds of soccer games. I watched her sing, dance, act, night after night never missing a line~never cowering on stage.

But what Mary faced in choosing brain surgery was sheer terror. Knowing that you will put your life~your physical abilities~your future~in the hands of a man you barely know takes pure guts.

On the morning of surgery, Mary was afraid. She had held her head so high and so confidently all those weeks before, but this was the moment~this was her having to leave us and walk out onto that battlefield, alone. We held her and prayed with her and encouraged and reassured. But it was still her battle. She had to let go of our hands and go out to wage the fight of her life.

We couldn’t go with her~we couldn’t take her away~we couldn’t fight her battle. We could only wait on the sidelines and keep our faith and chins up.

Mary is a champion! She never had any complications the entire surgery. She had great vital signs. She came out strong and ready to continue to wage the new battle of recovery.

In such a humble way, her first words to us were, ‘Look what we did! Look what we did! I can use my hands~I am talking~look what we did!’

She never once took any credit for her courage. She was never a martyr. She continued to try and convince us that we fought this battle with her. That she didn’t do it alone. Of course, she’s right. She had all of our combined faith and prayers. She had angels surrounding her. She is so right. None of us are ever truly alone.

Mary is strong and brave and courageous. Mary is mighty. Mary is our miracle.


If you look up the name ‘Zane’ it means ‘Beloved; Gift from God.’ It’s true. He is both.

Zane gets Mary. He has the patience of a Saint and the wisdom of age. He loves Mary’s many strengths and understands her recent challenges.

Zane was not intimidated by Mary’s illness and the uncertain future she faced. He not only helped her make the decision to choose surgery, he stood by her side and held her hand as she went through every step of it.

He took time away from school to be with her at UCSF. He listened and learned firsthand from among the greatest surgeons in the country, in one of the best hospitals. *His professors should give him extra credit for all that he has learned and experienced with Mary’s rare AVM! It’s probably one of the best internships he could take on.

From the moment he saw Mary after surgery, he was completely comfortable with her. The first thing he did was go right to her incision. Even her strong Dad couldn’t do that! He loves her incision! He is so proud of her. He took care of her every moment along with us, and when he left on day 5, we weren’t as strong of a team without him.

He helped her transition to home. He knows just when and how to give Mary comfort with just the right touch. It wasn’t until Zane was with her, back here at home, that Mary really laughed and smiled. At that moment~in our kitchen~I knew Mary was ‘back!’

Zane is beloved. He is a gift to Mary. He is a real life hero in her miracle story.

It Ain’t Over Till the Fat Lady Sings

She’s home! She survived this ‘impossible’ surgery without complications! She has her sense of humor and her voice and her beauty!

But Mary still has a long road. Her eyes are still sensitive to light and to movement. The 9 hour surgery took place behind her left eye. Consequently, both eyes were swollen shut for 5 days.

In order to reach Mary’s AVM, they had to cut through a muscle in your left temple that affects your jaw movement. So speaking, chewing, biting, swallowing, talking~all still uncomfortable.

Food tastes bad again. And she still battles nausea. And she is still in pain. Not just in her head, but all over. The doctors said that with such a long surgery, it’s normal for her to hurt everywhere. Her pain could last 2-4 weeks.

She speaks quietly and so we try to listen carefully so we don’t have to make her take more energy and efforts to repeat herself. She likes the room dark and the noise level quiet. Her brain needs to rest and recover. The pattern of blood flow through her brain for her entire life has abruptly changed. It is working very hard to adjust to its new route.

The eloquent part of her brain was invaded by these life saving hands. It’s the area that controls her speech going out but also her understanding of speech. It also governs smell and taste. Her brain is compensating overtime to still manage all of these duties~and it’s doing a wonderful job! She really is still Mary in every way.

Because of these unique challenges and because we wish for Mary to complete her recovery with the greatest of success, we are asking for no visitors for a while. Mary needs to feel safe and comfortable and in control of something~her day to day environment. Home is quiet and predictable.

But Mary isn't taking all this laying down. Oh no. She was walking on the treadmill today. Today she cooked us a gourmet lunch of sauteed salmon and brown rice. She will soon begin an online class through BYU. Mary is the hardest working patient there is!

Oh. And she has 50 staples in her 8 inch long incision~from the center of her forehead hairline, across and down to where it almost touches her ear. Yes~50.

Don’t get me wrong~Mary is very proud of her incision! In fact, she doesn’t want the scar to fade. Someday, she wants to ‘show and tell’ her story.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Supporting Cast

Supporting Cast

Mary is resting and enduring tremendous pain. But like a battlefield warrior, she does not give up the fight and she barely complains. In quiet, calm words she will say, 'Is there anything you can do to help me? I'm in so much pain.' She has rated it a level 12 on the pain scale of 1-10.

I am not able to communicate with all of you during this critical time. My focus is on Mary. There are many things to share and so many loved ones and friends who are concerned and providing great support, but I don't even want to take the time to send a text because it takes me away from her.

The many hours of being in her quiet presence though, has allowed me to be mindful of the many loved ones who are making it possible for Brad and I to forget everything else and take care of Mary. Let me share how wonderful they are with you:

Our son Phillip and his wife Jessica~taking care of Thomas, his schedule, pet schedule, and our home.
My parents~Thomas, home, pets and communicating with all of you, for us.
Thomas~7+ months of patience and support, being the 'big brother' that Mary needs.
Catherine~Keeping all of you and the family informed during these critical days on our behalf, the temporary 'ghost writer' of our blog, my #1 cheerleader when I need a boost to keep going!
Kris~For loving Catherine and supporting her as she supports us.
Zane~For literally standing at Mary's side and leading her through this difficult path; sacrificing every part of his life to be with her.
Zane's Family~For supporting him in his efforts, rides to airport, storing Mary's Utah belongings, sending prayers and gifts to Mary.
Lauren~Taking shifts at the house with Thomas and our dogs; a true friend to Mary and all of us.
Brad's parents~At the ready to come here or to Vancouver to help us.
Our Bigelow family here in the bay area~Introduced us to wonderful Dr. Lawton and are nearby for anything we need.
Jessica's parents, The Witts~Loaned us a car for our entire stay and brought supplies to the hotel.
Our extended family, congregation and friends~helping and lending support, especially to Thomas
All of you, literally all around the world~praying, fasting, sending well~wishes.

I try to take a few minutes each day to read through my email or look at messages. I am always boosted and recharged as I read your encouraging words. In turn, that helps us to help Mary! We read her the messages and we remind her of how many people love and care about her. I am so grateful for your faith and the time you take to reach out to us.

I truly feel your love and your strength.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Man Who Saved Her Life

Today, Mary and I shook the hand of the man who saved her life. Dr. Lawton came into her room and it was the first time Mary has seen him since surgery. She asked him, "How did it go? What was it like?" He told her that it was long and difficult. She had a very large 'pipe' (artery) feeding the AVM. He dismantled that one during the mid-way point of the surgery. He was actually working on her for close to 8 hours.

Dr. Lawton- Mary's Surgeon

He said, "Mary, move forward with your life. It is done. I will see you for follow up in 6 weeks and then once more in 5 years for an angiogram to be sure it is gone. But for now, forget about it, it's done."

She thanked him. I thanked him. We smiled so much and he smiled. When he walked out of the room, I finally let go and cried in Mary's lap. After 7+ months, it was the first real relief I felt for her. She is cured. She will never deal with this again.

UCSF (to the right of the big tower, where we spoke with Dr. Lawton today)

Blinded Me with Science

We learned a few important things"

Her AVM will not go to 'waste.' Half of it was sent to pathology and half of it was sent to Neurosurgery Research Tissue Bank. They will study it. They are close to finding the gene that determines why AVM's bleed or not. Mary is so happy that the medical community will learn from her AVM experience and help other AVM patients in the future.

We also learned that UCSF has an AVM study group. We met with the head of it back in November and she came to see Mary again today. She told Mary that in 10 years of the AVM study, they have worked with 880 people from all over the world. She is number 801!
The first Saturday in May, they have the annual AVM/Aneurism Awareness Walk on the Golden Gate Bridge. Last year they had 300 AVM survivors participate along with their families and friends. Mary will be there this year!

Battle Wages On

Mary's pain level today is a 7 out of 10. But that's down from 11, 12 the last 3 days. Dr. Lawton said she should not have had the amount of swelling and pain that she has. But it will get better. Her eyes are in pain and she cannot look up. She can open them now though! Her swelling is down and she can shuffle to the bathroom. Hopefully we can find something that she will eat too!

She has many weeks of rest and recovery. We are so grateful for your continued prayers and faith. We will appreciate your patience and understanding that she will need quiet, private recovery for quite a while. But it is only good news and only better days ahead!

We were told with insistance that this was impossible. Don't ever tell us something cannot be done. We will ride to the challenge and prove otherwise.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

He cares about more than just her brain

We have experienced literally every emotion from Monday until now. Monday morning was very difficult for Mary. Her pain was at an all time high, more than any pain that she has felt (including the pain from her hemorrhage) and that is saying a lot. She needed our encouragement to carry on.

The team for the angiogram came many hours earlier than we were prepared for, but that was good. Because she was fasting for the procedure, we were glad to have it over with and not having to dwell on it all day.

The challenge of her having to move from her bed to the transport bed to the angiogram was daunting. Every bump and every touch to her body is painful. So you can try to imagine how strong Mary is. We held her hands and stayed at her side until they literally helped us out of the procedure room.

Mary was almost as fearful of this angiogram as she was the morning of the surgery. She was very concerned that something would go wrong. She felt like she was having to start over and face more challenges from it. They could not sedate her as much and so she had to endure a lot of discomfort and pain.

We waited about two hours and then she was brought back to her room. The neuro radiation doctor, Dr. Farid (from Persia) came to tell us the great news! That the AVM was gone. This is amazing news.

Dr. Farid is finishing up his fellowship here at UCSF. We have been as impressed with him as we are with Dr. Lawton. Dr. Farid has come to see Mary every day since he performed her first angiogram last Thursday. He even worked through the weekend. He has come twice a day since her surgery to see her. He even spent some time talking with Zane about his MCATS coming up and has become very personal with us. He knows Mary's goals in getting through this and as Zane says, "He cares about more than just her brain."

By early afternoon, we were all very concerned (including her nurse Rene) about why after 3 days, the pain meds were not making a dent in her discomfort. She is on amazing meds that work for 90% of similar patients. Rene did some detective work and discovered that there had been a huge oversight: they had not been giving her steroids! This is standard for the first 48-72 hours after brain surgery. It reduces swelling but also provides relief from the pressure and pain.

We had the head of the pharmacy and Dr. Lawton in Mary's room within a few hours and steroids were started. Needless to say, we were pretty upset with this disconnect and because of it, Mary had to suffer far too long.

Steroids brought relief along with a new oral pain med and we noticed that the pain is more tolerable. On a scale from 1-10 her pain has been a 12 since Sunday and now it is about a 9-10.

She enjoyed listening to the Bachelor tonight and imitated every voice on the show! It is ironic because the Bachelorette was on during her last hospital stay. Although she can barely walk to the bathroom and stand to wash her hands or even open her eyes, she is very independent and we are confident she will recover. She does not want us to help her find things, she wants to do it on her own.

She was able to talk with Zane for the first time since he left and she showed a little spunk with him! That was so encouraging.

I forced myself to leave her and stayed at the hotel alone. Brad stayed with her at the hospital. It was a long drive for me and a lonely walk to my room, but I needed to recharge and get some good sleep. I think it is good for her to be apart from me for this short time. It felt so much like the day I had to leave Thomas in the NICU as a preemie.

Of course, within a half-hour of me leaving, she opened both her eyes for the first time! She had an uneventful night with quiet sleep. Many rounds of doctors in the morning. They are urging
her to eat and to work on opening her eyes. She saw a nutritionist today to help with all of that.

Her thighs are very tender and stiff from the angiogram in each leg. And her eyes have been swollen shut since Saturday, which is why they are hard to open. Dr. Farid explained that her surgery was very long and that is why she feels pain all over her entire body.

As Phillip says, she is making 'baby steps-literally.'

Our faith is sustained and our resolve strengthened through your prayers and wishes. We are so grateful for all of you.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Swelling goes down, Spirits go up.

This morning my sister had another angiogram to be sure that all of the AVM is gone. A team of 3 doctors came in to talk to her about the procedure. She did not have a good night last night and slept about 3 hours, feeling very uncomfortable. She has another excellent new nurse today and has been working hard to find the right meds that work for Mary.

The pain meds that work for most patients just like her are not nearly enough! But, although she is in pain most of the day, she still finds ways to make us smile.

My parents stayed with her until the last moment before she went in for her procedure. One of her Doctors, Dr. Farid held her hand, and was wonderful with Mary.

The machine that they use for the angiogram is huge. She was not completely out but had enough meds to keep her in less pain and discomfort. The procedure lasted for 2 hours and from the doctor's mouth, " The AVM is gone. No leaking. Looks very good." I cannot believe we got to hear those words.

Mary will have to return to SF in 6 months for another angiogram to be sure everything still looks great.

She is now on drugs that will help the swelling of her face and neck go down. She is 50 % better than she was earlier today and is happily enjoying listening to the Office/Bachelor tonight (her eyes are still swollen shut.)

Although her eyes are still swollen shut, her swelling is slowly going down and her spirits are going up.

Thank you again for all of your thoughts and prayers. So far, this could not have turned out any better and we are so, so grateful.

We love you Miracle Mary.