A peaceful end to a full weekend


Dude!  Dude!  Today we had Max’s party!  Dude, we went to Golf n Stuff, dude!  It was so fun, dude!  Dude, we played video games, mini golf, dude-dude, awesome go carts and bumper boats-dude!  It was so awesome, dude! 

What a great day for our (almost) 10 year old, who’s excitement can be measured by the frequency with which “dude” is interjected in his speech!  Today was a great celebration with maxs-party-013our family and Max’s friends.  Perhaps like never before, I have such an appreciation for opportunities to watch my kids laugh and have fun.  On top of that, it turns out our experience with all of the alarms going off in Rudy’s room makes surviving the sensory overload of a video arcade much easier.  On the other hand, I don’t think I’ve ever been more aware of how many places there might be to pick up bacteria–tables, chairs, golf clubs, steering wheels, game controls…  I think I’m on my way to developing into one of those OCD people who wash their hands every 5 minutes.  I found myself longing for a dispenser of hand sanitizer.


We were able to enjoy Max’s celebration so fully because the reports from UCLA the last two days have been reassuring.  We’ve come to see that it usually takes 2-3 days for Rudy to stabilize after a traumatic episode and this time the team seemed to arrive at equilibrium late on Friday.  As Trish posted, the trach collar sprints went very well and this afternoon the team returned him to the vent after 25 hours off.  He wasn’t really under any stress, but they just decided to not push him too hard.  We’re happy with that–you’ll recall the last time we let him go off and running he crashed after about four days.  As it will take a couple weeks for the stomach issues to get worked through, there’s no need to rush the breathing.  We’re just so glad he can do what he’s doing.  Tomorrow AM he’ll get a lung Xray and we’ll be very interested to see how his lungs look.  The nurses and I are laughing because for the last 30 minutes he’s actually been setting off an alarm because his O2 sats are too HIGH (over 95%).  I’m not sure if we’ve ever heard one of those before.  He keeps setting it off and each time a nurse needs to come in and push the button.  I think he’s very proud of this new trick and the fact that it gets him attention (even if he’s asleep).  GO, RUDY!

Being able to sit here with Rudy at 10pm on Sunday night is also giving me a chance to sit and think back over our full weekend.  As I wrote about a “new kind of normal” earlier in the week, it really feels like we were able to taste some of that this weekend–a richness in our family amidst the unknown and the challenges.  I would also be leaving something out to not talk about the Rescue Mission Graduation Ceremony we had last night.  I am so proud of the team I get to be a part of and the way it’s used by God to change lives.  We celebrated 13 heroes last night who came into recovery a year ago–from the streets, prison and who knows where else–and were now sitting before us radically transformed.  Clean, sober, surrounded by friends, reconciled with family and looking toward the future.  I don’t think any of them could have had hope enough to picture themselves sitting there last night a year ago, but every day they summoned enough strength and trust to get up and continue on–or at least just stand.  They leaned on God and the people around them and that brought them through.  Their courage inspires me and is something I’ve thought of often as we’ve navigated this journey with Rudy, where the daunting fight can only be met by faithfully taking the next step we see before us.  The same God that worked such miracle for Leslie, Lacey, Sherry, Sharon, Marie, Cindy, Jennifer, Marlin, Andrew, Anthony, Donnie, Jake and Kevin is with Rudy.  Being reminded of his love and power was so helpful.  Thanks friends, for what you’ve taught us!

11 thoughts on “A peaceful end to a full weekend

  1. Great news Rudy. I am glad all is going well, glad your brother Max had a great party, glad to hear about all the graduates at the mission too. Prayers for all!

  2. In the Japanese Tea Ceremony, it is honored that the “bitter” and the “sweet” go hand in hand. It is those hard times in life that make the good times so sweet.

  3. Our Nick will be 10 this April, actually it has gone by quickly, at times……you actually forget about HLHS…..maybe that is a good thing……….bless you all, hope today is a good day ……..Nick’s Grandma

  4. So glad your family was able to spend some great family time together and glad Rudy is making his way back from another surgery. As always, in our prayers. Love, Cousin Dianna

  5. Glad you were able to spend some quality time with the kids. Wow Max is growing up so fast. You guys look great!! Thank you Jesus for Rudy being stabilized again. Such an awesome god we serve. Have a super blessed week.You are in our prayers and we love you….

  6. Love that “uncomparably great power” that is at work at the Rescue Mission….great to hear about the champions!

    …and to hear that our little champion is setting off happy alarms….good news! Keep pressing on!

    We love you much!

  7. I am sooooo jealous. Golf N Stuff! You all look happy and rested and that is so cool to see. That’s a good looking crew there. So glad to see that Rudy is on the upswing. He’s a little stud that one. I love you guys!

  8. Rolf & Trish:
    The two of you are such an inspiration in all you’ve been able to handle. I so look forward to your posts but will celebrate the day when Rudy is home and things are so normal that there will be nothing to post!

  9. You always see the blessings!!! We’re learning so much from your beautiful family. God bless each of you. Love, Jane and Joe

  10. wow, Rolf! With everything going on in Trish and your lives, you still are impacting people around you with God’s love and grace. Congratulations on a job so well done at the Rescue Mission!

    Your story of the week-end was one of the first times I’ve read the blod without having my stomach tighten as what was coming next. I honestly feel you guys are rounding the corner and Rudy is going to get stronger and stronger.

    Prayers and love!!

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