Mike broke his right foot…. He said it’s ironic because, “We finally caught a break.” Oh…dad jokes.
Trey felt really bad because he’d been driving our friend’s four-wheeler when it happened. Trey is only 13, and he keeps saying how much he wants to drive a car because kids get their licenses at 15 in Idaho. And so, when he had a chance to drive the four-wheeler, we thought, “Why not? He has a helmet and a seatbelt. What could possibly go wrong?”
But as they took a turn too fast, Mike reflexively stuck his foot out the side of the four-wheeler—right before it actually tipped on its side—and he fractured two of his bones on the top of his foot.
Trey rushed into our house and told me the whole story. “It’s pretty bad, Mom!” So, we immediately rushed to the ER. I told Trey he should stay home, but he would NOT leave Mike’s side. Then when the hospital told us that children aren’t allowed in the rooms, Trey puffed up and said, “This whole thing was my fault.” And he actually convinced the medical staff that he needed to stay with his father!
After they took X-rays and told us the worst, I watched Trey and Mike. The two of them talked and laughed. They shared stories about the Korn concert they’d recently gone to—and about a concert they’re going to later this month. And I have to say that it amazed me, just taking the time to realize how their relationship has changed over the years….
Trey was only 5 when he met Mike, and now that he’s becoming a young man, it makes me proud to see how close they are.
Anyway, I’m glad Trey went to the hospital with us. It felt a bit hilarious leaving the ER; Mike had a boot and crutches, and I had my walker. I’m sure we made even 90-year-olds feel young.
But Trey still felt really bad the next day, and luckily my dad (Philip) called. My dad’s pretty legendary. He sends inspirational texts to our entire family every morning. You never know what he’ll say, but it’s always timely. Last year—before my cancer diagnosis—I compiled all of those texts and published a book for him. It was so awesome to see the surprise and joy on his face. More about that here: https://www.amazon.com/Inspirations-Modern-PHILosopher-Philip-Stilson/dp/B08DBW125M/ref=mp_s_a_1_3?dchild=1&keywords=philip+stilson&qid=1634212899&sr=8-3
So after telling Mike to “get better soon,” my dad called Trey to cheer him up. “You know, people get paid to actually tip vehicles over.”
“What?” Trey asked, mystified. “That’s not for real, right? I just think I’m a terrible driver.”
“No way! That’s a skill people look for. You could be a monster truck driver!”
Trey suddenly lit with excitement. “You’re…right! I could do something like that! I just feel bad Mike got hurt. I’ll just tell him to keep his foot inside next time! Then we can do this together!”
Mike’s surgery is scheduled for a week from Friday. It kind of feels like the blind leading the blind over here though. I’m still so sick, and now I’m taking care of Mike. But this experience has showed me just how amazing our kids are. Sky has been picking Mike up from work. Ruby has helped out so much with the younger kids. And Trey and Indy have started doing extra chores (more laundry and such).
It’s almost been exactly a year since I found out I have cancer. It’s odd, but this terrible diagnosis hasn’t been as tragic as most people might think. I can’t believe how much closer our family has gotten.
Our kids have transformed into responsible young adults. I know part of this is because my illness catapulted them into so much change. But as I watched Trey and Mike in the emergency room, it hit me again how very lucky we are.
I might have cancer, but I also have everything I could possibly hope for. It’s such a strange feeling: I’m the happiest I’ve ever been – and the sickest. It just goes to show, it’s all about perspective and gratitude.
Photo note: This picture is so adorable. The nurses kept saying they couldn’t believe how happy we are even though we’re going through so much. I honestly think it’s because we have everything; we have each other.