Jack has been healthy for 397 days!

February 26th, 2011

What a difference a year makes!  Jack continues to do so well and he is living life like a normal kid.

His story truly is a miracle and we continue to be so grateful that he is alive and healthy.

His favourite things right now are to swim at the Y, read, and play with his little brother, Christopher.

He’s very excited about this year’s lemonade stand!

This year’s event is set for:  Saturday, May 28  9am – 2pm at Pine Glen Park in Oakville, ON.

Jack’s Bravery Video

March 26th, 2010

Please watch Jack’s Bravery Video and be inspired…

Jack\’s Bravery Video

My heart is bursting with love and pride!


Another milestone – Jack can swim!

March 22nd, 2010

Monday  8:00am

This weekend was another milestone for Jack – he came  home from Bloorview for the weekend and went for his first post-op swim!

I can’t express in words how joyful it was to see Jack laugh and play with Christopher.  They loved pretending to be sharks and pirates and they were both exhausted afterwards.

I feel like Jack is officially back!  His sweet, funny disposition has returned and I am cherishing every single moment right now.

And we’ve received great news – Jack will be moving back home for good this Friday!

We are so excited and we still haven’t seen any seizures since his last surgery on January 25th.  We are back at SickKids again this week for a follow-up with his neurosurgeon, Dr. Rutka.  We know that the seizures can return at any moment, but the doctors remain very encouraged that Jack is doing so well post-op.  We continue to celebrate every healthy day!


Jack’s my inspiration!

March 8th, 2010

Monday 9:00am

Jack continues to do amazingly well and surprise us every day with his progress.  He was home again for the weekend and thoroughly enjoyed his time with Christopher.  They even went to the park yesterday and enjoyed the sun!  We found out last week that Jack only has 3 more weeks to go at Bloorview and then he will be home for good – yeah!!!  He still needs a lot of therapy and once he returns home he will receive therapy through Erin Oaks and we will make a transition plan for him to gradually go back to school.

And the best part is still no seizures!!!!!  We’re back at SickKids this week and next for post-surgery follow-ups and I can’t wait for his doctors to see him run down the hallway!  It actually brings tears to my eyes as I type this just thinking of the progress Jack has made since we last left SickKids with him in a wheelchair and otherwise bed-ridden.

On a personal note, I must share with you why Jack continues to be my inspiration!  I ran the Chilly Half Marathon yesterday and every time throughout those 21km that I felt like stopping, I repeated my running mantra over and over in my mind:  “If Jack can run…so can I!”  The feeling of crossing the finish line seemed to bring about such a sense of accomplishment for me that we have been able to survive these past couple of months.  I feel on top of the world and am just so overjoyed to have two healthy children for today, who both can run…just like mom!  🙂

Have a great day and enjoy the sun!


WOW! Jack can run!

February 26th, 2010

Friday 7:30am

Watch Jack in action!  We are SO proud of him!

Click the link:  “Jack Running at Bloorview

He has made great progress again this week and his coming home for the weekend.  He is moving more and more and making great strides.  He still has a really long way to go with his speech and he is still tiring very easily, but every day he is stronger!

Jack relaxing at home for the weekend!

February 21st, 2010

Sunday 12:00

Jack is back home for the weekend and he is having so much fun with Christopher.  They have been having movie nights and we even went out to Chapters and Licks yesterday.  It is amazing to watch how people treat you when you are pushing a child in a wheelchair.  I’ve described it as being like the parting of the red sea!  Every time someone stares, I feel like saying “He’s OK.  He’s so much better now after his operations and he’s going to walk again!”  And at first I was a little sensitive about everyone staring, but I now realize that they are looks of compassion.

Jack has really made remarkable progress this week.  He is walking more, relying on his wheelchair less, taking less naps throughout the day, and starting to speak more.  He is even playing on the computer this weekend, so his fine motor skills are really coming back.  Overall, he is still weak and experiencing a lot of weakness on his right hand side, but he is getting stronger every day.  And the best part is that we have not seen a seizure in 26 days!  It is so incredible and makes all of this worth it.

Jack and I are headed back to Bloorview tonight and will next return home again on Friday.

Please continue to pray for Jack that he continues to be brave and that he has the determination to persevere throughout his gruelling daily therapies.  Despite my half marathon training, I don’t know if  I would have enough energy to handle his packed schedule – it’s tough!  🙂


Look how far he’s come!

February 17th, 2010

Wednesday 7:45am                    

Looking at this picture with Jack in the ICU, where he had part of his skull off of his head for six days between surgeries and was unable to breath on his own following the second surgery, I am in awe of his recovery!  He is so unbelievable resilient and he continues to make progress every day.

The picture of Jack with the stuffed animal was at a Valentine’s Party at Bloorview.  They had cards, a photo booth, and other special activities for the children.  Jack had so much fun and really felt special there.

I can see more and more of my little sweet Jack returning every day.  He had a relaxing weekend at home and at one point when Christopher tried to wrestle with him, Jack hopped off the couch and chased him down the hallway!  He quickly sat down right afterwards, but it was the first spontaneous burst of energy and running that we’ve seen!  It nearly gave me at heart attack to watch, as my xray vision seemed to look right through Jack’s head to the titanium screws keeping his skull in place, but it was amazing to see his legs moving like that!!!

Jack is now back at Bloorview for the week and Grandma is with him again today.  I can’t wait to see him tomorrow and see his progress!

Jack responding well to therapy!

February 12th, 2010

Friday 9:00am

Bloorview Rehab’s Brain Injury Program is really incredible and Jack is responding well.  Today’s picture shows Jack sitting in a bunch of lit up balls in a special therapy room with low lighting, specifically designed to relax and sooth children.  The staff are wonderful here and he has made a lot of progress this week.  He can now take 7-8 steps on his own, is using more words, and sleeping less.  His sweet little personality is also coming back, which is great to see.  We have been told that it could take up to 3 or 4 months for his personality to fully come back, in large part due to the trauma of surgery.  He is still dependent on his wheelchair, but he has now figured out how to make it go and he’s really enjoying wheeling away from me!  Jack has physio, occupational and speech therapy this morning and will then be heading home for a long weekend at 2pm!  I am SO proud of him for how hard he is working in therapy.  He often works to the point of exhaustion and often falls asleep after his sessions.

And while Jack is off to physio therapy right now, I am off for a run!  So both Jack and I will be working our legs this morning  🙂

Have a great weekend!


Inspiring Youth: Meet Isabella

February 11th, 2010

Thursday 8:30am

Yesterday, a 15-yr-old Oakville girl named Isabella (the girl in the group photo with a pink flower in her hair) rallied the students at St. Mildred’s Lightbourn School and held a hot chocolate and cookie sale to help Jack and his Jack’s Lemonade Fund at SickKids!  The students, staff and parents were incredibly enthusiastic and supportive.

What makes Isabella so special and courageous is that she, too, battles seizures.  As I listened to Isabella talk to her classmates about Jack and her own journey with seizures, I was moved to tears by her poise, grace, and confidence.   She then presented me with a gorgeous bouquet of flowers and cards made by the students.  She is an incredible young lady who is proving that seizures don’t need to be a barrier to achievement!  Thank You Isabella and Thank You St. Mildred’s Lightbourn School!  Watch for the article in the Oakville Beaver!

As for Jack, he had a sleepover with Dave last night and I arrived back at Blooview this morning, where I was greeted with such a sweet smile.  He is SLOWLY progressing and making small strides every day!  We’re heading off to his first therapy session of the day now…


Christopher is being the best little brother!

February 10th, 2010

Wednesday 7:00am

Thank you to those of you who have taken a moment to think of and pray for Christopher, Jack’s 3-yr-old brother!  And the balloons from Helen, Dave, Ally, and Ryan across the street were a particular hit with him!  In all the craziness of commuting, not being home and giving Jack so much attention, Christopher has really had to be strong throughout all of this!

He is such a special little guy and the best little brother.  Since Jack has been gone, Christopher sleeps in Jack’s bed every night by himself and asks every night when Jack is coming back.  He just doesn’t get why Jack has to be away for so long and he misses his big brother a lot.  It was also hard for him last weekend when Jack came home and still got most of the attention because he requires constant care.  The one thing Christopher did find cool though was Jack’s wheelchair!  He kept asking when it was his turn for a ride and at one point tried to eject Jack from the chair!  Thank goodness for seatbelts!  My biggest fear was that Christopher would try to give Jack a ride around the house in the chair and sending him flying down the basement stairs, so you can start to see why constant supervision is required on the weekends around here.

As for Jack, Grandma is still taking amazing care of him at Bloorview.  I can’t believe how lucky I am to have such an incredible mom.  She has been a rock for Jack (and me!) and the most incredible support.  Thanks MOM!  I will have to nominate her for a MOTHER OF THE YEAR award!  If anyone knows of any contests, please let me know!

I am so excited to see Jack tomorrow morning.  I miss him so much and find it tough to be away from him.  I called him a couple of times yesterday and he was able to tell me that he loves me.  🙂