P.J.’s Journey: Good Dads Versus Great Dads

A.J. and P.J.My emotions overwhelm me tonight as I write this post.  I am watching my husband go through one of the most difficult experiences a person faces, the loss of his mother, yet I see him continuing to care for his family and offer the same service he has continued to provide throughout P.J.’s journey (See P.J.’s Journey:  My Copilot).

To say A.J. is a good dad is like saying Mother Teresa was a nice lady.  A good father takes his kids out for pizza and tucks them in at night.  A great father, one like A.J., gets up three or four times in the middle of the night to cook for his son because he knows that weight gain is critical to wound care and it’s important to feed him when he’s hungry.  A good father helps his kids get dressed and encourages them to work hard at school.  A great father, one like A.J., changes sheets and pillowcases regularly because he knows infections can be deadly, and encourages his son to struggle through physical therapy, no matter how painful, because the end result will be worth it.  A good father pushes his child on a swing and holds his hand while he climbs stairs.  A great father, like A.J., pushes his son in his wheelchair and holds his hand while he is going through torturous treatments.

With my father and father-in-law both having gone home to be with the Lord, for the past few years, Father’s Day has been about helping my children to appreciate their dad.   I don’t know if they will ever be able to fully appreciate all he has done for them, but I can truly say that I do.

A.J., you are an amazing father… never doubt that for a moment.  I love you with all my heart.  Happy Father’s Day.

——————————————————————-

If you would like to be notified of future posts regarding P.J.’s journey, please enter your email address on the upper left side of the screen to subscribe to the feed.  To view all related posts, select “P.J.’s Journey” from the Categories list on the lower left side of the screen.

Posted in P.J.'s Journey | 10 Comments

P.J.’s Journey: An Anniversary to Celebrate

This past Friday, January 11th, marked one year since P.J.’s accident.  In some ways, that seems so long ago, and in others, it seems like just yesterday.  I am one who encourages others to forget anniversary dates unless they are of fond occasions, such as an engagement, wedding, lottery win (smile) or other happy moment.  I think remembering the date someone we loved died is pointless… what’s more important is remembering the date they were born, the date they were baptizied, the date they graduated from high school, etc.  Too often we dwell on the negative things that happen to us.  But because we wanted to continuously show P.J. how far he had come in “x” number of days, we kept looking at the calendar and counting back.  We had a positive purpose in mind, and I’m glad we did it, but the negative side of it all is that it made that date stick in our minds, and my friends, that is a date that I have often wanted to forget.

With the passing of one year, I was contacted by my Human Resources Department at work a few weeks ago and questioned about P.J.’s status.  The representative encouraged me to complete a request for an extension on my Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) coverage.  For those of you who are not familiar with that, larger companies are mandated to offer this type of protection to employees who are themselves ill or injured or have an immediate family member who needs long term care.  It allowed me to take off, without question or concern, up to twelve weeks (non-consecutively) during the past year while P.J. has been recovering.  When HR first contacted me, it forced me to dig through some of the original emails I’d sent in the hours/days just after the fire.  This was not a pleasant experience.  I found myself in tears as I was glancing over some of them.  It was a flashback of where I had been emotionally at that time, and that was not a good place to be.

I had a similar experience when I tried to write thank you cards after my dad’s funeral.  I offered to do this for my mom and family, and I very much regret that it never got done.  Every time I started writing, I found myself crying all over the cards and missing my dad more than ever.  I finally gave up.  So, if you’re one of the people who was owed a thank you card back then, my apologies and my belated thanks for your care and concern for our family.

My point is, that bringing yourself back to a place or a date that reminds you of a negative event is not a good thing, and you should do everything you can to avoid that!  It’s like the guy who said to the doctor “It hurts when I do this.”  The doctor’s reply?  “Then don’t do that!”  LOL.  All too often, a young girl has a tendency to cry herself to sleep listening to the song that reminds her of the boy who just broke her heart.  (Yes, I speak from experience!)  I say “DON’T!!!”  If it hurts when you do that, then don’t do that!

So what was my point?  Oh yeah… What I was trying to say is that with P.J., we were purposely remembering the date of his accident so we could point out to him his progress.  That turned out to be a very positive thing, because we have been able to show him pictures and videos of all of the early days and then intermittent ones thereafter.  Whenever he says “I’m not healing,” we have evidence to say “Oh yes you are!!”  Before and after pictures of his wounds show incredible progress.  We used the pictures of his face (which healed the best and fastest for several reasons) to comfort many family members of other victims who’d come to the burn unit.  Everyone who entered and left Baton Rouge General’s Burn Unit from January to September 2012 knew P.J.’s story and became a friend and supporter and we did our best to encourage and support them in return.  But while remembering the date was a good thing in a way, I did find myself becoming a bit emtional at times on Friday, and having my own little pity party about what a rough year it has been… not even counting the other difficulties we faced.

I’ve decided, however, that January 11, 2012 will be a date that we will celebrate and remember forever as a good one.  It is the date that God spared our child from what should have been a fatal accident.  It was the first day of a journey that has brought out the good in all of us as we’ve supported one another through the tough times, a journey that has made us closer to each other, and a journey that has given us such a workout that we are stronger than we could ever imagine.

P.J. is doing very well.  He is getting stronger every day and his wounds are progressing.  We are hoping that he will only need one additional surgery in the near term.  As we continue with P.J.’s Journey, I look forward to some new dates for celebration, like the day he walks with no assistance, the day of his wedding, and the day his first child is born.  As always, we thank you for the prayers that have kept us going and have helped to make each day a better one!

  ——————————————————————-

If you would like to be notified of future posts regarding P.J.’s journey, please enter your email address on the upper left side of the screen to subscribe to the feed.  To view all related posts, select “P.J.’s Journey” from the Categories list on the lower left side of the screen.

Posted in P.J.'s Journey | 7 Comments

With sincerest gratitude…

Our dear family members and friends (new and old), what a year this has been for the Guillot family!  As I was recovering from my October 2011 ankle surgery in early January, I remember saying to my physical therapist, “I can’t wait for life to get back to normal!”  I quickly learned that those days of swelling and pain were minor inconveniences compared to what was in store for us.  If you are reading this, I am sure you are aware of the circumstances that followed…  The fire that almost took P.J.’s life in January and the flooding of our family home by Hurricane Isaac in August.  Although we all often wish that we could turn back time and change the outcome of both those events, we can’t help but be thankful to God for His glory that has shone through in both tragedies. 

This letter is to thank you all for the love and support that you have shown us already and continue to pour on us each day.  During the first few weeks after P.J.’s accident, we were told to be prepared for the worst.  Your prayers and ours were heard and God woke him from his sleep and brought him back to us.  His days continue to include pain and suffering that most of us could never comprehend, but he is alive and fighting the battle courageously.  We thank you all for the prayers, calls, emails, Facebook posts, contributions to P.J.’s video, “Get Well” cards, and the hundreds of cards, letters, and gifts he received on his 20th birthday.  Your thoughtfulness has truly made a difference in our child’s life. 

After Isaac destroyed our home, we were reminded once again of the great support network that we have in all of you.  I do believe we have more clothes, sheets, and towels than we had before the storm!  Our rental home is filled with furniture and household items and appliances from countless sources.  I tell everyone that it has the value of Joseph’s coat of many colors.  As my mother always says, “We couldn’t have more or want less.” 

The friends and volunteers (from four different organizations so far) who have come to help with the emptying, cleaning, and gutting of our home, have shown us what selfless giving is all about.  We are inspired by their sacrifices and hope to “pay it forward” someday. 

Many of you have shared our story with your friends who have shared it with their friends and so on… (just like the hair commercial)!  We need your help now in sharing our thanks with these individuals, who in some cases remain anonymous to us.  We apologize that we were not able to send individual thank you cards to each one of you, but we ask your help in passing this message along to everyone.  Please feel free to email it, share it on Facebook, or photocopy and distribute it.  There is no way to adequately portray what we feel.

This is just a small attempt to let everyone know the enormous depth of our gratitude.  We are humbled, overwhelmed, and forever thankful for the generous gifts of all kinds that have been provided.  May God bless each of you twenty fold.  We love you.  We truly do.

Tina Guillot
(On behalf of A.J., Tina, P.J., Joshua, and Molly the Schnauzer)

Posted in Family, Life, Miscellaneous, P.J.'s Journey | 19 Comments

P.J.’s Journey: Glimpses of Past, Present, and Future

I rarely have time for TV these days, but the other night, I caught part of the movie “Ghosts of Girlfriends Past” starring Matthew McConaughey and Jennifer Garner.  In this movie, just like in all of the versions of “A Christmas Carol,” the main character gets to see glimpses of past, present, and future.  Sometimes, these are scenes that the person was not actually a part of, so it answers questions for them about why things turned out the way they did and gives them insight into how their actions affect other people.

Today P.J. was readmitted to the hospital.  Over the past few weeks, we have watched him make a rapid decline, and have been powerless to help him.  I was so sad last night because I knew what today might bring.  At the same time, I was so tired… tired from the physical strain of busy schedules, numerous appointments, nights with interrupted sleep and from the emotional strain of being a parent not able to help my child, and the guilt of feeling like surely we must not be doing something right. 

Sometimes I wonder if I had the opportunity to glimpse past, present, or future, what would I see and how would it make me feel?  Would I have some anwers about what things had happened to take us to where we are today?  Would it matter?  Would it change anything?   

In the movies, Scrooge and Connor Mead (McConaughey’s character) both change into better people overnight.  McConaughey converts from a womanizing dog who believes that “love is magic comfort food for the weak and uneducated” to declaring his love for Jenny (Garner’s character) and coming to a new realization:  “Someone once told me that the power in all relationships lies with whoever cares less, and he was right. But power isn’t happiness, and I think that maybe happiness comes from caring more about people rather than less.”  Can I get an “Amen?” 

Who else can you care for more than your children?  So where is the happiness in that caring when you can’t give them what they need?  You can’t make them eat when they are starving themselves to death, you can’t make them heal when their bodies are just worn out.  What a frustrating situation for a control freak like me to have no control. 

As synical as the above may sound, I really do think that happiness comes more from caring more about people than less.  What would that glimpse into the future tell me about P.J.’s journey?  Would happiness come from that?  I have to trust in God that it would and believe Him for a miracle for my boy.  Prayers are always appreciated as we continue to fight this battle with P.J.  May God bless us, everyone!

  ——————————————————————-

If you would like to be notified of future posts regarding P.J.’s journey, please enter your email address on the upper left side of the screen to subscribe to the feed.  To view all related posts, select “P.J.’s Journey” from the Categories list on the lower left side of the screen.

Posted in P.J.'s Journey | 10 Comments

P.J.’s Journey: The Touching Story

I was recently at a Toastmasters meeting where one of the speakers presented an advanced project called “The Touching Story.”   The objective of the speech was to tell a story that would move the audience in some way.  He very much accomplished that objective and had me crying before the timer hit the 5 minute mark.   Afterward, I was thinking how P.J.’s journey will someday make for a very touching story, but it’s too fresh right now… too hard to talk about in front of a large audience.  Now there are two meanings of the word “touching,” though.   It could refer to something that elicits strong feelings or emotions from someone, or it could refer to the physical act of putting your hands on someone. 

For five months, we were not really able to touch P.J., at least not without gloves on, and then we had to be very gentle, of course.  It’s just been the last week or so that we’ve not been restricted to the gloves, but they’re still “recommended.”  Think about that for a minute…. that means no hugs, no kisses, no touching at all.  It’s sort of ironic in a way, because many people believe that human touch has great healing power.  Lack of touch can actually lead to “Failure to Thrive,” a potentially fatal syndrome, in newborns.

When I was emailing back and forth with a friend the other day, she closed with “Hug P.J. for me!”  I wrote back and said, “Well, hugs aren’t possible at the moment, but I’ll bank one for you.  After all, when I get word from him that he’s strong enough to handle it, I’m going to hug the lights out of him!”   Okay, not really.  But I can’t wait to make up for lost time with P.J.  I am sure I’ll have to stand in line behind his girlfriend, Britan, but that is okay.  I can wait my turn.  Besides, in the words of the iconic resident of the Hundred Acre Wood, Winnie the Pooh, “There’s no such thing as too much hug.” 

At some point down the road, I look forward to telling the touching story of P.J.’s full recovery, but for now, I’ll continue blogging when I am able.  I thank you for your comments on my posts, your prayers, and your support as we continue on P.J.’s journey.

  ——————————————————————-

If you would like to be notified of future posts regarding P.J.’s journey, please enter your email address on the upper left side of the screen to subscribe to the feed.  To view all related posts, select “P.J.’s Journey” from the Categories list on the lower left side of the screen.

 

Posted in P.J.'s Journey | 4 Comments

P.J.’s Journey: Some Presence for P.J.

For our 25th wedding anniversary celebration in 2008, my husband and I included a note on the invitation that read “Your presence is the only gift we desire.”  We didn’t want “stuff.”  We wanted our friends to just enjoy the party and spend time with us.  We wanted their presence… not their presents.  Ever since he was very little, P.J. has loved the gift of our presence.  He’s never, ever been a loner.  If he’s watching a movie, he wants someone to watch it with him.  If he’s going for a walk or a run, he wants someone to tag along.  He doesn’t like being alone. 

This journey has been a big challenge for him as he not only struggles to deal with the pain and suffering, but the time he has to spend alone.  Now that he’s back in the burn unit, we don’t have the freedom to stay in the room with him twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week as we did when he was in the therapy ward or for the short time when he came home for those ten days last month.  He is handling it well, but he anxiously awaits our arrival and becomes nervous when we don’t get there right at the start of visiting hours.  It’s not that he wants to talk to us or wants us to talk to him.  In fact, he often sleeps the majority of the time we are here.  But the point is, we are here.  We are sitting in the room with him, available if he needs us for anything from talking to wiping his nose.  Just knowing we are here is a great comfort to him.

In those rare moments when we wonder if our presence is really of any value, we remind ourselves of the extent of his condition, not only physically, but emotionally as well.  It is then that we regret the times when we aren’t able to be here with him, and we are thankful that in those moments, P.J. has the greatest gift of all — the presence of his Heavenly Father.   Just knowing He is with our boy is a great comfort to us.

Tomorrow is June 11th.  Five months have passed since that dreadful night when we were awakened by the delivery of horrifying news that our lives would never be the same.  But every day, regardless of whether we take a step forward or a step back, we are one day closer to P.J.’s full recovery, and every day, is one day that we are blessed with the gift of P.J.’s presence. 

  ——————————————————————-

If you would like to be notified of future posts regarding P.J.’s journey, please enter your email address on the upper left side of the screen to subscribe to the feed.  To view all related posts, select “P.J.’s Journey” from the Categories list on the lower left side of the screen.

Posted in P.J.'s Journey | 8 Comments

P.J.’s Journey: The Essentials

All along, in addition to dealing with the issue of P.J.’s survival and recovery, we’ve struggled with some other things affiliated with the accident, like the negative things that were reported in the news.  I remember Day 2 when we learned of  how the media were reporting the specifics of the accident.  I cried more hysterically at the point than I had the day before when I’d learned the extent of P.J.’s injuries.  It wasn’t that I was more worried about “what people thought” than I was my own child.  It was that I felt horrible that my baby was lying in a hospital bed with life-threatening injuries and people were talking about him in a bad way.  The negative reports, for the most part, have been cleared up.  Witnesses have come forward to correct false statements that were made and we’re hoping that’s all behind us.  Unfortunately, the newspapers don’t go back and print a follow-up saying “By the way, that statement was later corrected,” or “There was a misunderstanding.”  It surprises me, however, every time I talk to someone who shares another version of the rumors that were being spread, most of which do not even slightly resemble the truth or the news reports in any way.  I think to myself, “Where do people come up with this stuff?!?!?!”  I get angry and upset and I want to publish a website devoted solely to defending my boy’s honor and integrity.  And then I realize… it’s not essential. 

What is essential is that the people who know and love P.J. know his heart and they know what a great kid he is deep down.  They’ve seen his struggles not just over the past 4-1/2 months but over the past 7 years and have prayed for him every step of the way.  They’ve refrained from judging and they’ve admitted their own mistakes in an effort to let P.J. know that we all need help once in a while. 

P.J. came home from the hospital on May 10th and eleven days later (this past Monday), he was readmitted with a staph infection.   We’re thanking God that his body is already responding to the antibiotics.  That’s essential.  Prayers are being answered.  That’s essential.  P.J. has survived a tragedy that would have killed most people.  That’s essential.

A.J. and I were told early on that this would be a long journey, but I guess we thought the exhaustion and the stress would’ve been gone by now and things would have settled down for us, but they haven’t.  It is still very hard.  But we are so thankful to our Father in heaven for providing much needed joy and strength at the times we need it most.  It’s amazing how we continue to see God’s plan unfolding in P.J.’s life and in all our lives.  God is constant and faithful.  His mercy endures forever.  That’s essential.

 ——————————————————————-

If you would like to be notified of future posts regarding P.J.’s journey, please enter your email address on the upper left side of the screen to subscribe to the feed.  To view all related posts, select “P.J.’s Journey” from the Categories list on the lower left side of the screen.

 

Posted in P.J.'s Journey | 6 Comments

P.J.’s Journey: Incommunicado!

In 28 years of marriage, the only time my wonderful husband, A.J., and I ever had any problems was when we stopped communicating.  We were fortunate that we realized the problem and corrected it eventually, and we’ve managed to have many more happy years together.  The days since early February when we “separated” and I returned to work and life at home leaving A.J. at the hospital with P.J. have been really testing our ability to keep the communication lines open.  One of the hardest things about coming home for me (besides leaving P.J.) was knowing I would not have access to the doctors, nurses, technicians, etc., like I had while I was there at the hospital.  I begged A.J. to call me and put me on speaker phone whenever he talked to anyone important about things, but it’s not always convenient for everyone involved as you can imagine.

When P.J. was still in intensive care, it was easy for A.J. to steal opportunities to call me because he could only see P.J. for twenty minutes every four hours and he spent the rest of the time in the waiting room, but once he got moved to a regular room in the burn unit, visiting hours extended from noon to 8:00 p.m.  So then we talked only in the early morning and late evening.  Now, A.J.’s staying in the room with P.J. 24/7 and so there’s no convenient time for him to call me.  While P.J. is awake, A.J. gives him his full attention.  While he’s sleeping, A.J. doesn’t like to call because his talking on the phone might wake P.J. up.  Leaving the room is an option, but there’s not really a place to go to just sit and use the phone.  As a result, my technology-challened husband has become quite savvy at texting and instant messaging on Facebook.  Unfortunately, things get lost in the translation sometimes, so I’m having to learn to live with the fact that I don’t always know what’s going on.  I’m thankful for the weekends when I can get the scoop on everything (that A.J. remembers to tell me… unfortunately, he is stressed and exhausted and doesn’t always remember everything… I think I will bring him a notebook next time so he can start writing things down).

Communication is not just important in family settings.  The recent move for P.J. from the burn unit to the occupational therapy ward has been quite a challenge to say the least.  We’ve had to rely upon the nurses and doctors in both units to communicate about where he has been with his journey and where he’s going and what works and what doesn’t.  Poor A.J. gets caught in the middle and has to constantly correct their assumptions and insist that they talk to each other.  While there are many things this hospital has done well and that have made us happy P.J. is there, this issue with communication has been a real challenge, and we plan to follow up about everything that has happened with the Patient Care Quality Management Department.

If you’re as old as dirt like me, you may remember the Jimmy Buffet song, “Incommunicado.”  The chorus goes:

But now I’m incommunicado
Drivin’ by myself down the road with a hole in it
Songs with no vibrato
Takin’ the long way home

Yeah, I know what you’re thinking.  Most of Jimmy Buffet’s songs confused me, too, and trust me, it wasn’t because I was listening to them while eating brownies with “special” ingredients.  I may have been a teenager in the 70s, but I was a good girl.  ; )  I was thinking about this one today, though.  I feel just like this… incommunicado… and P.J.’s takin’ the long way home.  BUT, the good news is that at least we know he’s coming home.  His target release date is May 14th.  It’s not written in stone, but we’re certainly trusting it’s a good date and looking forward to our family being together again as we continue P.J.’s journey!  We’ll keep you posted.

——————————————————————-

If you would like to be notified of future posts regarding P.J.’s journey, please enter your email address on the upper left side of the screen to subscribe to the feed.  To view all related posts, select “P.J.’s Journey” from the Categories list on the lower left side of the screen.


 
Posted in P.J.'s Journey | 3 Comments

P.J.’s Journey: Seeing is Understanding!

When this all started, we began keeping a diary of sorts for P.J., documenting with video and pictures the progress that he was making.  To maintain his privacy, we have not posted any of those pictures or shown them to anyone other than a few family members and close friends.  I know it’s probably difficult to imagine what someone who has been burned to the extent that P.J. has must have looked like on Day 1 as compared to today… Day 79.  Our impression of his healing has changed from day to day.  It’s hard to explain, but on Day 5, he looked much worse to us than he had looked on Day 1 because his face was beginning to scab and peal.  Of course for the first month or so, we were only seeing his face because everything else was wrapped up.  For that  matter, anyone who would walk into P.J.’s room today and see only his face (when he is covered), would think he looks fairly normal with a only a few minor abrasions.  But for us, since we have been with him when he is completely unwrapped, we know the seriousness, the magnitude, of his injuries.  He shared with me the other day that when the technicians were removing the staples from the skin grafts on his chest, he counted over 100 of them… just on his chest!

This time of year always reminds me of the movie, the Passion of the Christ.  I grew up knowing the story of Christ’s death and resurrection, and so I was surprised at the overwhelming emotions that surfaced when I viewed the movie with a group of friends from our church.  I was sobbing so hard that I almost threw up.  A few people walked out because they couldn’t handle the graphic nature of the scenes.  Seeing it (or a reenactment as it were) of the whole ordeal that our Savior suffered, brought a new understanding to what we’d already known.

For us (especially A.J. who is at the hospital all day every day) we see the agony in P.J.’s eyes, the rawness of his flesh, and the anxious anticipation of painful treatments. We see our 19 year old son weighing less now than he did when he was 12 years old.  We see it all and therefore have a different perspective, a greater grasp, of just what P.J. is experiencing.  I love my friends and I appreciate all of the support and encouragement that they have shared, but (yes, there’s a “but”) sometimes their comments like “You have to stay positive” and “Keep the faith, Tina!” tend to unnerve me.  Don’t misunderstand me, please.  I don’t get upset with the people who say these things.  Quite honestly, they are probably the same expressions I would use to encourage someone in my situation.  It’s just that the words bother me because I believe my faith is very strong.  But isn’t it true that even Jesus, as perfect as He was, asked “My God, my God, why have You forsaken me?”   The fact of the matter is that I will NEVER be able to express to you what this whole situation is like, and until I experienced it, I would have never imagined it.  Faith or no faith, if I don’t talk about how I feel, I will probably end up jumping out the window of my cubicle on the sixteenth floor of Lakeway II!  I don’t know what it is like to lose a child and I don’t want to ever find out, but I do know what it is like to see my child in agony and not be able to do a thing about it, and it’s not just occasionally or periodically… it’s CONSTANTLY.  I am so proud of him for fighting for his life.  I often look at him and think that if that were me… if I were in that bed dealing with the things he is dealing with… I would just give up and beg God to take me home.

Seeing P.J.’s injuries firsthand helps me to understand what he is going through, but (yes, there’s a “but”) seeing the PROGRESS he has made firsthand helps me to understand the kind of healing that he will receive when this is all said and done.  I look forward to sharing those miracles with you as we continue on with P.J.’s journey.

 ——————————————————————-

If you would like to be notified of future posts regarding P.J.’s journey, please enter your email address on the upper left side of the screen to subscribe to the feed.  To view all related posts, select “P.J.’s Journey” from the Categories list on the lower left side of the screen.

Posted in P.J.'s Journey | 9 Comments

P.J.’s Journey: The Joshua Factor

I remember back when A.J. and I were debating on adopting another child and some friends told us “Two are not much more work than one.”  I still don’t get that.  I think what they must have meant is that if you’ve got a routine down for one you can keep the other on the same schedule and do for two what you normally do for one.  Maybe that is somewhat true for twins or children who are very close in age, but when your kids are like ours, almost seven years apart, it’s a whole different ballgame.  Two kids equal twice the work, twice the cost, and okay… twice as much to love.   Our boys are as different as night and day.  From a very young age, P.J. always wanted company… someone to play ball with, someone to watch a movie with, someone to work out with.  Joshua has always entertained himself reading, drawing, playing video games.  There are definitely similarities… for example, both boys have always needed help with homework, but that’s a boy thing, right?  ;-)  They also both have a freckle behind their left ear.  When we discovered this, P.J. was about 7 or 8 at the time and I was able to convince him that was God’s way of stamping (or branding) them to get into the right family.   

Lots of people have asked us how Josh is doing with all of this that has happened to P.J.  The answer is that he is doing amazingly well… handling it better than most twelve year olds would.  Of course, Josh would tell you that is because he is going to be 13 in July and will get his own email address and FaceBook account at that time (that’s what he thinks… haha).   This accident has had a huge impact on our entire family, especially Josh.  With the situation as it is now and P.J. being hospitalized over two hours away, it’s been tough for us to give both boys our undivided attention, so Josh has had to grow up a lot over these past 10-1/2 weeks. 

Both our boys have strong biblical names:  Philip James and Joshua Michael.  I explained the meaning behind P.J.’s name in the first entry I wrote about his accident (see P.J.’s Journey:  The Early Days).  The name “Joshua” is from the Hebrew “Yehoshu’a” meaning “YAHWEH is salvation.”  The name “Jesus” actually comes from a Greek translation of the Aramaic short form.   The name “Michael” is from the Hebrew name “Mikha’el” meaning “who is like God.”  Joshua loves P.J. with all his heart and he hurts for him, but he has the kind of faith that we should all have… he just knows God is going to take care of everything and P.J. will be home again soon.  I can’t explain it, but he has never doubted or questioned the power and love of God.  He has such a simple (child-like as it may be) trust.  P.J. used to get a kick out of telling everyone that he named Josh.  Yes, it’s true… we actually let our six year old (with some guidance and limitations) pick out a name for his new baby brother.  But I think you’ll agree his decision was guided by God, and I think it is no coincidence that Josh has so much confidence in P.J.’s future health.

 ——————————————————————- 

If you would like to be notified of future posts regarding P.J.’s journey, please enter your email address on the upper left side of the screen to subscribe to the feed.  To view all related posts, select “P.J.’s Journey” from the Categories list on the lower left side of the screen.

Posted in P.J.'s Journey | 1 Comment