Most people come to LA for face lifts.
We come to LA for brain lifts. Guess we aren’t like most people.
If there is anything we have learned humor is great medicine.
4 years, 10 months and 3 weeks, Derek has never had a break from the disabling symptoms of SSCD.
Sometimes in life, before it gets better, it gets worse.
Time + Patience + Faith = Recovery.
I have learned to not ask Derek if he is noticing a difference. Not yet. Its like a little kid on a 12 hour car ride, 5 minutes in, asking “Are we there yet?”
What this man has had to endure, motivates me everyday to be open minded to try, do, and be anything he needs for an ounce of comfort. Another great lesson we have learned on this journey. Many medical professionals were closed minded, missing this all along.
BE OPEN MINDED!
This surgery is definitely noticeably different – in a great way. The holistic alternatives we have found are also helping him sleep – which is priceless. Preventing the horrific migraines is amazing. He has had headaches, but NO migraines. Came close to one last night, but we were able to ward it off. No prescription pain medicine, only holistic and natural means. For having his second brain surgery, that to me is miraculous not to have to deal with the nasty side effects of heavy pain medications.
Instead of wishing these days away, we are accepting this journey. Derek’s days are filled with Andy Griffith, inspirational war movies and real life movies of people overcoming tragedies, along with the travel channel, and on the weekends LIVE PD.
Our highlights are always facetime and videos with Miss Scarlett our granddaughter and our phone conversations with our kids. They are the best medicine ever, and together we are all dreaming: BIG BOLD DARING RISKY DREAMS.
Planning our next time that we will all be together motivates us. The old saying it takes a village to raise children, is so very true to us. We are eternally grateful for Derek’s parents filling in the parenting of our absence. This is the longest we have been apart and it has not been easy. Dave and Linda, you have been amazing. At the same time were also dealing with four family members that departed this world and have gone to heaven. Thank you, for you are amazing people. I see where Derek gets his heart.
From the both of you.
I have learned to not look back.
Pioneers, only look forward.
We don’t expect anyone to understand what Derek and our family has been through. Nor are we looking for sympathy. Because the reality is, we have it good. There are too many out there that have it way worse than us.
Instead, we want to shed light on this wretched disease called SSCD and create a massive awareness. Along with supporting all chronic long term illnesses, and injuries. To offer HOPE to the suffering. Especially when every single moment- of every single day -kind of suffering occurs.
Our mission is simple: To encourage others to become a PIONEER. Pioneering forward towards cures, miracles, and discoveries.
To all our warriors out there: Be strong. Be courageous.
For a greater power is over you, and HE will see you through.
Success doesn’t come without challenges. There are moments that we don’t have it all together. Our whole family is homesick for one another. It has hit me that 1/3 of our children’s childhood memories are us pioneering forward for their Dad’s illness.
9 days out from surgery, as if recovery wasn’t hard enough, we had to move from our campground. Once again, we were in a dry, hot, campground that lets just say was humbling to us. Having no idea where we were going to move next, I had to rely on that thing called faith again. Naturally moving Derek during the rough stages of recovery, was a bit nail biting on my part.
Just when I wasn’t sure what to do. God showed up.
I’m beginning to realize that sometimes He likes to show off.
In one day, 2 offers for places to live were graced upon us.
Angels do walk among-st us.
Thank you to the angels who gave us unbelievable offers.
We swapped from a previous drug infested, bed bugs, being afraid to letting our kids ride their bikes on their own- kind of campground, to moving to:
Camp Pendleton – a Marine base in California.
Talk about opposite sides of the track.
Now we have tanks, Blackhawks, and soldiers walking by our camper on a daily basis.
Our extreme lifestyle never ceases to amaze me. For God surely has a sense of humor.
On my early morning walks, I am confronted by soldiers on the beach training in the crashing waves carrying one another. Humbling me to a whole new level. I’m in awe of the men and women that devote their lives to serve all of us for our freedom. Watching them train here, I have a whole new respect and appreciation for the men and women’s devotion to our freedom.
Of course I have also learned that in the early mornings as I run on the beach, I can’t get in the zone listening to my music. I’m not on deserted French Rd anymore. Not realizing I passed the NO TRESPASSING sign, this Granny ended up in running in the training area for the marines. YIKES!
Meet our angels who made this move possible:
Lt. Col. Christina “Shaq” Szasz and James Beck.
Christina was amongst one the first women to fly F-16CJ fighter jets and one of only three women to have ever flown the F-117 Stealth fighter.
People thought I was a tough chick driving a 42 ft trailer through the mountains. However, seeing pictures of what this woman has accomplished blows my mind. This stunning beautiful women is an incredible role model for all women. My favorite attribute is that she radiates humbleness. Her love and code of honor for freedom is the source of her patriotic heart. She choose to be a fighter pilot because she wanted to be at “the tip of the spear.” She wanted to be out there doing something that is going to directly affect saving someone’s life and influencing the mission.
She is my new hero.
Then there is James. Speaker. Author. Coach. “Pay it Forward” social innovator. To give you an example of the quality of person he is – James gave away everything he owned, dedicated a year of his life to serve one family or individual in each state for three days, and only asked that they paid it forward. Unbelievable.
Check out his website: http://www.givebeck.
There are only two things you can control in this world – where you spend your heartbeats & your attitude as you spend them. James Beck
These two amazing individuals were able to get us onto Camp Pendleton.
Our camper is parked on the beach.
This random act of kindness, continues to refine Derek and I. To ‘Give Beck’, serve others, and be apart of a growing movement in encouraging others and paying it foward.
James and Christina have not only become treasured friends, but also partners with us on our new Passion Project. Our hearts are all one in reaching the goals to serve others.
We look forward to knowing James and Christina, the rest of our lives.
Though a long grueling recovery awaits Derek, he too is the “the tip of the spear.”
I remind Derek everyday, that his journey is going to impact the masses to simply never give up, to believe in miracles, and that all things have great purpose- even the tragedies- For the faithful will be blessed.
With our toes in the sand, the next month,
Derek will be recovering like a beach bum hippie.
Keep the prayers coming. I believe this miracle IS unfolding.
Sarah Hein, the Pioneer