It’s something I would encourage everyone to do at some point in there life. Live on the road for awhile. There has been so much we have learned along this journey, and one of the many blessings was the gift to travel across this grand country we live in. From state parks, to the Grand Canyon. From sea to shining sea, we have traveled in hopes to find answers for Derek. There were many moments of tears, meeting wonderful patients who became our heroes, strangers who randomly showered us with kindness, and of course
the moments of laughter.
Living on the road, you just never know what you are going to see.
I knew there was a reason I didn’t like chocolate.
We pushed hard this trip. Only stopping to pull over for gas, and slept at rest areas and truck stops. There’s something really awesome about driving all day, puling over, to climb back into your home on wheels and go to sleep. It’s actually quite freeing.
Early mornings, Derek would look for me. Anywhere I could find an outlet and wifi to work, is where I would be.
Yes, that is me.
in the corner working, of a trucker lounge.
Sometimes you have to do -what you have to do.
By Friday we were so exhausted we pulled over at a campground in Arizona. Our first shower in a few days felt like a bit of heaven. And that’s when we decided to take a break. We needed a mental health day. A chance to soak in our surroundings. Taking one day off, we walked around beautiful Sedona Arizona. Watching Derek react to noises, engines of vehicles, all the things that don’t bother the average person, made me realize how long he has suffered living in a world very few can even begin to understand.
A prisoner stranded on an island -trying to survive. The island is – his head.
On the outside, Derek looks great.
But inside his poor head, is a world, constantly in a brutal war.
When we passed a live band, I knew when he tightened my hand he was holding, that it was piercing to him. It’s moments like this, I grieve what he cannot enjoy.
For those sounds are pure torture to him.
But then I remind myself.
Not for long.
For with God, all things are possible.
We enjoyed a lunch outdoors. And soaked in the Arizona sun. We didn’t talk surgeries, or suffering. Instead, we were in the moment. With our trustworthy Snickerdoodle’s at our side, we dreamed of our next adventures.
We dreamed dreams.
Big. Bold. Dreams.
We had an early breakfast with Derek’s cousin Kurt. We love his family dearly and are so proud of what they have accomplished. We missed his wife Jen, who was running in the Chicago marathon. Couldn’t be more proud of her.
Then, over the river, through the mountains, hitting the cross winds and white knuckling the steering wheel, the long long trailer made it to sunny California.
The traffic picked up. Nothing against motorcycles – except when they give you heart attacks for they drive in between the lanes, and the chaos of the outskirts of Los Angeles were upon us. The days of quiet French Rd, in a township called Milford, where you blink and miss it, are now behind us.
Sunday evening, we rolled in, to our new home in Menifee, California, for as long as it takes. This town was the only place we could find a spot for our camper, unfortunately we are a good two hours from the hospital. Not including traffic- which is a nightmare. Sometimes you just have to make do. We will have to hotel it, for appointments and upcoming therapy. Just the way it is.
Derek had to go off the natural protocol that was allowing him some quality of life, to prepare for surgery. I’m still in shock how much the protocol helped him. Unfortunately, he has been rough ever since he stopped and the drive was hard on him. Monday he slept most of the day. Had a horrible migraine.
I spent the day preparing. Realizing what I take for granted back home. Grocery shopping when you have to GPS the store because you have no idea where you are going, in itself can be overwhelming. To show up in yet another town I have never laid eyes on can either be an anxiety attack or another grand adventure. Menifee, I have decided already, I love. Great town, lots of shopping options and this time we don’t have film crews everywhere.
Many of you have asked for our address. And to be honest, the cards with words of encouragement for Derek his last surgery put a smile on his face during the tough recovery. Continue to encourage our brave warrior!
Cards will be forwarded to us- So go ahead and use our Wisconsin Address:
411 S 5th St. Watertown WI 53094-
Packages can be mailed to:
Thousand Trails: C/O Derek Hein
30605 Briggs Rd. Menifee California 92584
As I pack for the hospital, with my essentials; my prayer journal and bible, are on the top of my bag. I have a peace that I cannot explain.
For this journey has changed Derek and I forever.
Derek will be at the hospital Tuesday and Wednesday for back to back doctor appointments.
Thursday, the day we have long awaited for- is coming. We don’t know his surgery time yet, but it will begin sometime in the morning. I will keep you all posted, so we can band together, as brothers and sisters of Christ and surround Derek with a covering of prayers, filling the heavens with praises of thanksgiving for this unfolding miracle.
Pray for anxiousness to leave Derek and be replaced with peace.
Be strong and Courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you. He will never leave you nor forsake you.
B E L I E V E with me!
Sarah Hein the Pioneer