Friday, January 2, 2015

The Perfect Match

It has been a very long time since I've done this so I will apologize in advance for any poor grammar and difficulty in writing.


We felt with it being the start of a new year that we would share an incredible story from 2014 in honor of our sweet baby boy - intending that it may provide somebody with inspiration, faith and possibly even hope.


Shortly after Wesson was diagnosed in 2011 Logan and I and most of our closest family members were encouraged to join the Be The Match Bone Marrow Registry, as chances were quite high that he would need a bone marrow transplant.


So join we did.


It wasn't but a short two days or so after arriving at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital that rapid evaulation was done and it was recieved that Wesson's cancer was rapid, aggressive and quite terminal.


Logan, Keegan and I were quickly HLA typed (HLA - Human Leukocyte Antigen or our "genetic markers").  A test done to identify matched tissue types for transplants.


The results came back quickly - in hopes to move forward with a treatment plan.


None of us were potential matches.


I know that they began to look farther into the registry for the perfect match for his HLA type, and to this day because it was irrelevant I'm not even sure if they found one.


A simple matched bone marrow transplant became an unforseeable option as his cancer was unresponsive to treatment.


Our options became a high risk and sort of "new" and yet very promising stem cell transplant using mismatched donors. With hopes of reaching a "graft vs leukemia" effect where the new immune system responds by killing off the new "foreign" residual leukemia cells, and continues to do so.


Logan became Wesson's first donor. And his cells worked beautifully. Just as expected.


Wesson went into remission for at least a couple of days when his intelligent cancer cells mutated rapidly to appear completely identicle to Logan's new donated immune system.


His cancer came back more rapid than ever before and we had no more time.


I quickly became the perfect donor match for Wesson as a full mismatch to his cancer cells due to this mutation.
An incredibly high risk transplant known to completely deteriorate any residual cancer cells with high potential for a complete cure.
Only Wesson was in no condition for another stem cell transplant.


And so the story goes.


The point here was not to repeat Wesson's story with hopes for a new ending.


I do however like to reminisce from time to time; as Wesson's transplant physician had once said - it really was an incredibly poetic journey.


To cure our son it would take a mother and a father as a team.


Little did we know - two years later we would be reminded of these transplant details in a much deeper way.


We would travel down the path of bone marrow transplantation one more time again.




Only this time - We Were On The Other Side.



Logan recieved a phone call at the end of September from a kind woman from Be The Match


They needed his marrow.


He had been perfectly HLA matched to a very young boy from South America, who has been suffering from leukemia and would need a matched transplant in order to survive.


Logan did not hesitate. Happier than ever to be able to help this young boy - the same age as our oldest son Keegan.


The workup was not as simple as we expected. But we made a journey of it.


The next few months we spent time on the road. Physical examinations, various telephone calls, multiple vials of blood taken and finally a trip to Rapid City to pull out an entire unit of Logan's blood to be given back after the procedure.


He also agreed to be part of a research protocol. They would take extra bone marrow during the procedure and use this as part of a study. The study would defer the differences and outcomes of transplants from donors on anti cholosterol medications and donors who were not taking anti cholesterol medications.


Logan is obviously not on cholesterol medications.


Funny. They are still studying Wesson's bone marrow, blood cells etc. And now they will be studying Logan's too.


What a trip.


December 15th came - the day of the procedure. We traveled to Denver. We fought against snowy roads, inclement weather and poor traffic all in hopes to just get there safely.


This young boy was to receive his transplant shortly therafter. A new birthday right before Christmas.


It was certainly a physically draining task - quite literally for Logan.


I was thankful and felt blessed that Logan would get the chance to feel exactly what his own young son felt multiple times in his short 13 months of life. The physical pain of having a large bore needle jammed into the bones of your hips and sacrum.


The procedure was much longer than I had anticipated it. I guess it always seems that way when your just --- waiting.


Wesson's always seemed long too.




When Logan came out they took us up to the bone marrow transplant floor where they informed him he would need to lie for six long hours until his aspiration sites clotted.


They stuck a yellow gown, gloves, mask - the whole gammet on me while I waited in the rocking chair next to him.


For his protection they said. I felt like a lepper.


What a flooding of memories. What a flooding of sadness and emotions and reminders of the blessings that we have.


To sit there in the chair next to Logan I felt like he was sick. 


And we thought about Wesson.


We thought about the frail bald headed patients walking down the hallway as we made our way to the room to recover. Hanging feebly on to their family members as their TPN and chemotherapy drips infused.


I felt lucky. Blessed that we would go home that night while most of the patients on that floor would stay there for months and months on end.


I wished badly that we could do more for them.


I wished that cancer was not real.


We thought about the little boy that would soon recieve Logan's life saving marrow.


We had been notified earlier in the week that he had started his intense treatment regimen in preparation to recieve Logan's cells. The treatment that we remember so well.


The harsh therapy that does all but kill you off completely.


We were nervous the whole week before.


What a blessing to be reminded of  that fear. The fear that shakes you to your core and makes you want to hide inside of your house.


Because if anything would faulter on our part - this boy would surely not survive.




A fever, a sore throat or a car accident.


So much could go wrong.....


What a breathtaking experience.


Logan did wonderful. He is a strong and incredibly inspiring man and I could not think of a more wonderful candidate to donate cells to a young boy.


His recovery went well and the three sites on his low back from the aspirations are still very visible - which I think is amazing and I'm thankful for that.


I like to peek at them as he bends over to pick up our youngest son. Makes me sure that it is Wesson giving his daddy another chance to make a young child's life just as beautiful and blessed as his was.
Wow. Life. What a trip.


Logan wanted this story shared so that we could encourage people to join the Be the Match Registry.


It is incredibly easy.


Simply log on to http://wwww.bethematch.org and click on the link JOIN.




Some people wait their entire lives to help somebody in the way that my husband was able.


To give another child or an adult a second chance at life has to be one of the most incredible joys and opportunities that we can experience as soulful human beings.


God truly has some incredible plans in store. For everyone.


It really is worth the time here on Earth isn't it though.


We will be able to recieve updates on this little boy 100 days post transplant. So until then we pray for his recovery, for great healthcare and for comfort for him and his family.


We will keep you all updated too! Thanks for being part of our journey with us, Happy New Year and God Bless.















Friday, November 15, 2013

Yesterday was Wesson's 2 year cancerversary.

November 14th, 2011.

I cannot believe it has already been that long.

If someone had told me two years ago that this is where we would be today -- Wesson gone from Earth and an angel in the sky and a newborn baby brother in our home -- I would have probably thrown up.

Even today it's unbelievable. You just don't ever grow accustomed to the idea that your son has passed. Gone. Forever.

Until we meet again.

Since then I have become a part of a group of mothers on facebook. A special group of women who have all lost children to cancer.

We face problems and challenges that all mothers face with the additional difficulties of losing a child.

We work daily to fill the void in our life that just can't be filled.

We question ourselves.

We've had to make decisions that no parents should ever have to make.

And we live with those decisions now. 

We've had to pick out what we should wear to our child's wake.

We've had to choose hospice or treatment.

We've had to pick out a headstone, a burial site, a funeral date.

We have to live with the idea that our child has passed before us. Way before their time, and much sooner than we would ever have wished.

We have to hold on to the hope that there is an afterlife and pray that we are good enough Christian human beings to get there someday.

We have to accept the fact that we are not in control of the fate of our children.

And we wonder.

Are we doing the absolute best that we can to honor our children?

How do we continue to remember and cherish them in the ways that they deserve - birthdays, Christmas, cancervisarys, special dates, etc.

We are spread thin with the demands of taking care of the responsibilities of our children that are still here, while trying to grieve for the one that is gone.

It's difficult and it hurts.

All the time.

Here I sit taking care of baby brother Harlan at 5 weeks old. Looking back two years ago Wesson was already sick at this age.

Barely born into life and already terminally ill.

Logan and I have become a part of the social atmosphere of real life cancer warriors. It seems there are more and more children diagnosed each day and my heart aches for the children and their families.

The pain that they endure is out of this world.

It is something I cannot even explain.

Our community recently lost another cancer warrior. Diagnosed only a year after Wesson.

It breaks my heart that this happened. A tragic loss of such a wonderful boy and an amazing faithful family.

This only fuels our fire to continue to help make a change.

Our foundation has been up and running for close to a year now, and for those of you who haven't heard we have raised over $50,000 and have fulfilled our first grant request from St. Jude Children's Research Hospital for the RELHEM protocol which is a phase 1 clinical trial that is considered "breakthrough" treatment for children like Wesson who have been diagnosed with relapsed or refractory leukemia.

This makes us very proud and we hope it makes Wesson proud as well. We will continue to strive toward funding research directly until there is a cure.

While Logan and I were traveling to Sioux Falls the day that Harlan was born, we talked about Wesson most of the way.

How could we not?

How we were blessed to have another child about to be born, how we've learned so much from our sweet Wesson and how thankful we are that he no longer suffers.

I can't imagine the parent I'd be today if Wesson hadn't been brought into our lives.

I am so thankful for what he has taught me and I know that Harlan and Keegan will benefit so much from all that their brother has given us in his short time here.

God takes care of us, and he gives us what we need.

And then he takes it away at it's own time.

It isn't ideal, it isn't in our plan but it will all make sense in time.

This we can be sure of.

And that fact gets me through each day.

On that note I want to remember Wesson and his difficult battle with cancer today and everyday. I want everyone to remember the sweet hero that he was and forever will be.

We are kindly asking for a $2 donation in honor of Wesson's 2 year cancerversary. All donations to the Wesson Littau Foundation are tax deductible. A small price to show love and remembrance of a tiny but tough superhero.

Since our website has not launched yet at this time, you can donate to our cause at the website below. It is safe and secure.


https://fundrazr.com/campaigns/3SaM0




Wesson at Sanford Children's Hospital about a week after being diagnosed. Daddy got to hold him for the first time after being extubated.


Sunday, September 22, 2013

Wake Me Up When September Ends

Wake Me Up When September Ends. It's a song by The Counting Crows. I have always loathed it. It's depressing. It never made since to me.

And it's whiney.

But now I get it.

And not just get it. I live it.

September used to be such a wonderful month. It usually meant a new school year, a new chance, a fresh start, cool weather, pumpkins, happiness, harvest and beautiful growing crops. For my side of the family it also means lots and lots of birthdays.

New life. Love. Hope.

And now it stands for something different.

It has nearly been one year since Wesson passed.

September 26th.

I have replayed that day and the 24 hours prior to it over in my head for an entire year, each and every day and every time I lay down at night.

I hear this is common. To relive those moments.

When I look back I can honestly say the past year has been a blur. A total and complete blur. Like God was like okay Kristi I will take over because you cannot do this alone. 

Like I got put on autopilot.

Because when I think back the day we lost Wesson feels just like yesterday, clear as can be. And everything in between is quite sketchy.

We had made the decision with the help from our very well dedicated and trusted ICU physicians and transplant team that it was time for Wesson to be taken off of the ventilator and undergo surgery for a tracheostomy.

His cancer was declared cured. For Good.

My God we didn't even think that would be possible. His liver was healing and his organs were not completely failing. His graft with mommies cells were stronger than ever and he had already fought off a line infection and fungal infection that we thought would take his life.

There was so much hope. The only option was that he had to get off of the ventilator. His pain medicines were at such high doses that they could knock out an elephant, and keeping him on it any longer posed more risks than we were willing to take.

However, the tracheostomy procedure panned out to be much more than sweet Wesson's body could handle.

The procedure itself went good but my sweet boy was unable to recover from it and his organs began to fail.

Not from the procedure.

Not from the leukemia.

From the chemotherapy, the antibiotics, the treatment, the combination of it all.

I remember the nurses encouraging me to sing to him, pray, talk over his body. This was probably eight hours or so before he would leave this world.

Neither Logan nor I could successfully do this.

We would take turns whispering words of encouragement in his sweet little ears. I closed my eyes.  I could barely look at my son at this time.

It was not him.

My son had beautiful warm, pale glowing skin. Sparkly blue eyes and laughter that could make the devil smile. The boy that was laying in the room of the ICU that night did not have these qualities.

He was leaving us, and Logan and I both knew it.

Logan and I took turns that night. We knew we were losing him but we were so sleep deprived, weak, and emotionally shaken that we took two hour shifts to try and get some sleep while the other stayed close by to monitor his status and listen to what the ICU team was saying, what the every two hour lab tests were telling about his status and what decisions were being made.

When morning came they asked us to mask up and stand back as they tried to place an arterial line. It failed.

I fell asleep curled up in the rocking chair with my mask on -- like a toddler does when he's scared or sick or in trouble.

When I woke up Logan and I both went to the bedside.

We gave our sweet boy a sponge bath -- for what would be the last time. We placed blanket upon blanket over his sweet body to keep him warm.

I remember the words of the ICU physician that came back that morning just to place Wesson's chest tube. He was supposed to be in meetings, but came running in shortly after we discovered Wesson had developed a pneumothorax from the high ventilator settings that he could no longer tolerate.

He ran over to us and the words still ring in my head "I know that this is a real living nightmare for your guys."

How true.

Logan and I had to make the decision for the ICU team to stop coding. We had to listen to machines beep and buzz and scream until Wesson's sweet darling heart stopped and the world as we knew it came crashing down at our feet.

We had to stand in a room full of strangers as they unhooked the various lines and tubes that had been his lifeline for over 6 weeks in the ICU.

We have to live with these last memories of our sweet boy. Knowing he deserved better than that in his life, and yet unable to give that to him.

We had to let go of something we had fought for, for nine precious months knowing and yet not accepting that the outcome may end up exactly this way.

Heartbroken.

I remember Wesson's wonderful transplant physician saying, only moments after Wesson became a sweet angel.

"If Wesson's story had not ended so tragically, it would have been poetic. It took both you and Logan to save him. And in the end you did. That is something you should always be proud of."

It really is all very beautiful.

The most beautiful part now being that Wesson has been saved.

Saved from a life of pain, suffering, tears, heartbreak and heartache and ugliness in this world we call Earth.

I find comfort in the promise that Logan and I are also saved and will someday (With God's promise) get to hold him again.

To feel his warm glowing skin and hear his beautiful laughter that we have longed for and will continue to long for - for the rest of our lives.

Logan and I will suffer now. Big brother Keegan too. 

We will struggle. We will find happiness on some days and sadness on others. But I am forever grateful for this struggle and this suffering because it reminds me that we are alive.

And that this whole thing was real. Wesson was real. And he is here with us.

And there are days I ask "WHY" -- of course there are.

But what brings me solace at these times is the biblical question that I ask myself daily:
"Who understands suffering better than God and Jesus Christ themselves?"

Who better to spill your sorrows to than God -- he himself watched his son suffer and die on the cross for us!

We had experienced this similarly.

We are not the only ones to watch our child suffer. We have not made ourselves victims, even though the pain some days is so deep I feel like I'd rather just sink into the carpet than to face the day.


We don't have many memories in our home of Wesson. Our memories are in hospitals, transplant floors, ICU's and hallways of St. Jude Children's hospital. But they are still beautiful ones.

And after this year my goal is to lay Wesson's memory of his last day of life to rest.

Wesson would not want to be remembered that way, and there are so many beautiful memories floating around of him in my head and in my camera that I'd rather fill my heart with those.

I will always do what I can as his mother to make sure his battle is remembered and that his beautiful soul will remain with us.

He keeps us strong.

He has made me a better mother and has oddly enough enriched our lives so much that I find myself thanking him daily for everything his short life brought to us that we otherwise would have never had.

A richer love, deeper laughter, stronger relationships and a value for life that cannot be replaced.

There are days I long to administer his IV meds, strap his little mask around his shiny bald head, wash his blankets over and over, clean up his vomit, boil his bottles and pacifiers, and rock him for hours and hours in the middle of the night so that he didn't have to lie alone in a hospital crib.

I long for this so badly that it makes me physically ill.

There are moments I wish he could play with his new to be baby brother. I wish he could have watched his proud big brother walk into preschool this year.

And I wish we could have had more time to raise him up to be the wonderful man he could have been.

But I am so happy that he is in God's arms instead.

And as my growing belly continues to inspire people to ask the question "Oh is this your first?" or "How many do you have" --- I will always say:

"No it is not my first" and "I have three".

Wesson you will always be my son. You are still here and although we cannot see you, we feel you daily.

I will always be proud to be your momma sweet boy and I know your daddy feels the same.



September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Remember Wesson.

Remember his suffering, his death, his life and his battle.

Remember those that have been diagnosed with cancer, will be diagnosed and please do not take your lives or the ones around you for granted.

Enjoy your children. Love them, hug them, tell them you love them more than necessary. Read to them, lay down with them at night. Put pictures of them in an album instead of sharing them on Facebook.

And Proudly Wear Gold This September for Children Like Wesson who are Fighting for their lives when they should be playing, learning, growing and living.



 








Thursday, August 1, 2013

Happy Birthday Sweet Boy

Happy Birthday to Heaven's sweetest angel - my son.

It's been awhile since I've been able to write on here. Simple put -- Life Happened.

And to sit down and write for me is opening up a set of emotions that I will admit I was afraid to feel for a very long time. But today is appropriate to write about sweet Wesson, and he deserves a birthday that will honor him in all ways, despite what kind of emotions may be felt in the process.

Where do I start? We have been doing, planning, and preparing for a lot of things for our sweet baby boy. Our Wesson Littau Foundation is fully and completely underway and has been since November of last year. I am proud to say that we have so far raised close to $45,000 in Wesson's beautiful name.

This money is going directly to pediatric cancer research, for now at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. But we are and always will be a foundation that supports all pediatric cancer research at whatever hospital may need the appropriate funding for a protocol that provides hope for children with all forms of catastrophic pediatric cancer.

Of course our hearts remain at St. Jude Children's because that is where our sweet boy was treated and ultimately cured.

To answer some questions: We do not only fund Infantile Leukemia treatment protocols. We are open minded to all forms of pediatric cancer and have seen so many sweet faces fall to other catastrophic illnesses, that Wesson would want treatment for all forms of pediatric cancer supported in his name.

 We also do not directly transfer money to St. Jude Children's Hospital. Let me explain.....

St. Jude Children's Hospital has many expenses. From providing food and lodging for patients and their families, to hospital necessities on inpatient and outpatient, to simply lighting and running their facility on a day to day basis. These are all wonderful and necessary for the hospital to do what it does and make miracles.

However, we have chosen for our hard earned funds to go directly where the miracles happen.

Research.

To do this we  chose to contact Wesson's research physician's. His amazing bone marrow transplant physician who became a best friend or fatherly figure to Logan and I during our stay in Memphis, and his wonderful and very beautiful infantile leukemia research physician. In April we returned to the Memphis and the hospital and sat down with a couple of ALSAC representative and boldly spoke of the dreams we have for Wesson and his growing foundation.

There was an option for a phase 1 clinical trial/protocol for children and infants like Wesson who had relapsed or refractory AML, ALL, and APL. All forms of very difficult to treat Luekemias.

It is called RELHEM.

And it needs funding.

This is also the clinical trial that got us accepted into St. Jude Children's Hospital February 2012. It did not work for Wesson. But it is working for children like Wesson, and it is considered a "breakthrough" treatment.

We have chosen to fund this. It is perfect for our foundation.

And Logan and I know that it will make sweet Wesson proud.

Our website is currently in production, but we ask that you consider donating to our foundation in Wesson's name. We do not have administration, we do not profit from our foundation in any way other than the satisfaction that we are helping to cure pediatric cancer.

It is simple. A wife and a husband with a dream for nothing but to change the way cancer is looked at, funded, and treated.

Our current and temporary page is: https://fundrazr.com/campaigns/3SaM0 and you can donate directly to our pay pal account to help make our dreams become reality.



As I had previously mentioned Logan and I, along with some of our family members chose to honor Wesson in a very healthy way this April.

We ran at the St. Jude Children's Country Music Marathon in Nashville, TN. Ultimately raising over $20,000 for the children at St. Jude. Logan and I chose to run the half marathon, with me being four months pregnant and Logan not having the time to train -- we felt this was our most logical option.

The energy that we felt that day was beyond what words could explain.

Wesson was present.

13.1 Miles surrounded by family and friends that care about Wesson and his hard fought battle with cancer just as much as I do. A sea of people running for one thing: a cure for pediatric cancer.

We sweat, we laughed, we hurt and we cried.

And we will do it again next year.

I could look to the sky and see him up there. In fact he made it rain on that early morning. At first it seemed unfortunate. To be in Nashville, TN running a half marathon at 7:30 AM at not see the sun shine. The rain poured. And poured. And poured. Where our feet were sloshing and rain was dripping down our hats, and into our eyes.

Before the race had even started.

And as we waited in line for our turn to run, I thought to myself and even said out loud "Wesson did this. It's his way to make a challenging and oh so difficult situation and turn it into something that feels almost impossible to accomplish."

But he did it because he knows his momma and daddy. We loved it.

After the race was over in Nashville, Logan and I with my parents had travelled to Memphis. To see St. Jude Children's.

For the first time since Wesson became an angel.

What an experience.




The tile was donated by a wonderful and very giving family in Wesson's honor. We are so thankful for their kindness and for the gift. Wesson will always be present there now. What a special way for ourselves, visitors and future and present patients at St. Jude Children's Hospital to be reminded of our sweet blue eyed boy.

My biggest fear of entering the hospital was not the anxiety I had about meeting up with our physicians, it was not meeting with the ALSAC reps to discuss our foundation in it's entirety and prove our dedication to this hospital.

It was that we would find Wesson ever present in the hallways, in the waiting rooms, and on the transplant floor.

When we left on that dreadful day in September, we left our son there. I had always felt that way. I had somehow thought we might find him again inside the doors of St. Jude. I was so afraid of what that would feel like.

And as we entered those doors I felt...

Nothing.

It was relieving to me.

Wesson did not stay in Memphis when he earned his angel wings on September 26th.

He came with us. He traveled the heartbroken roads from Memphis, TN to Winner, SD right there with us and he has been with us ever since.

It took a visit to the hospital for me to realize this.

We could now leave St. Jude Children's behind for what it was. A hospital. No longer our home.

And now life has taken over again.

We have since been trying to live life normally, but not like we previously did. We are continuously raising money for the foundation and always thinking of better ways to honor our sweet boy.

We are raising a five year old the best way that we know how after being absent from his life both physically and mentally for the better part of a year.

We are planning, and preparing for a new life to bless us on October 11th. Another sweet baby boy. Fearful of what is to come of this new life, and yet feeling blessed by God and big brother Wesson for the gift that we have been given.

And still trying to put together the broken pieces of our scattered hearts, figuring out how to grieve and still go on living and breathing without our sweet baby boy.

Dreaming of his face often, praying for ourselves that we can live a life that will lead us to him one day, and struggling to find comfort in the fact that the only thing we can do for him now is help cure the cancer and change the treatment that took his sweet life.

So Happy Birthday to my sweet Two Year Old Angel.

You are not two to me.

You are still 13 months old and you are mine.

You are sweet, blue eyed and pale skinned. You look like your mommy but have your daddy's sweet heart and determination. Your hands and feet are petite like mine. Your personality and character is overwhelmingly powerful. You are smart, strong and sweet. You are photogenic and love attention.

Your taste in women is impeccable -- young and very smart long-haired nurses. I have no doubt you would have had a beautiful wife and amazing kids.

Your development was not only right on track despite the treatment, but you were ahead.

You would have not just succeeded in life but you would have accelerated.

You would have been small and quick and agile. Athletic and strong-willed.

You were unlike your brother in not only personality but in size and character. You would have watched him, looked up to him and loved him.

You love your mommy and you look up to daddy. Mommy to snuggle with and daddy to play.

The Happy Birthday song makes you nervous and scares you a bit -- I don't blame you for this.

You have a sweet tooth for chocolate like your big brother and spicy is how you like your beef jerky.

You do not have a favorite blanky -- anything soft will do.

Stuffed animals -- you had many. But they are all foreign to you because they contain scary bacteria.

You are funny. Class clown material. And you love to laugh. Tickles on your neck are your favorite.

I carry you with me everyday sweet boy. I do not pack your diaper bag. I don't give you medicines. I don't strap on your mask and stroll you around.

I don't fear your life.

You go to work with me. You sleep in our bed. You sit with us in church.

You are always there.

You strengthen my heart, give me courage and you make me love your daddy, big brother, and brother to be more and more each day.

Love you sweet boy forever and ever.

video

If you can, think of Wesson today. Say a prayer up to heaven. A soft wish or a simple Happy Birthday to let him know that he is loved, remembered and cherished by us all.










Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Angel Baby

First of all I want to share with our supporters and contributors, friends and family that the Wesson Littau Foundation, INC. has made a huge step forward this week.

We have offically recieved our 501(c)3 permission from the International Revenue Service -- meaning any donations made to our foundation are permissable as tax deductible charitable contributions for US tax purposes. Or in other words when you donate to our foundation, it can be written off as a charity donation.

We are excited, as this is our last and final step to launching from our stomping ground and really beginning to raise funds, awareness and accomplish our goals for the year. If you would like to donate, we do have a safe and secure PayPal account set up and a fundraising page that we are using until our website is launched.

Here is the link if you are interested in sending an online donation directly to our Wesson Littau Foundation, INC. bank account: https://fundrazr.com/campaigns/3SaM0


Logan and I have both been doing a lot of thinking about Wesson. Not just lately, I guess. Pretty much always.

The old saying "time heals everything" has proven unsuccessful thus far.

We have found other ways of healing.

Trying to fight back.

Grieving the loss of a child is like that nightmare we have all had where you are running away from something horrific but going absolutely nowhere. You just keep moving your legs, trying to get further toward your destination but you are just running in place.

It's not even just the pain of losing my son. It's what we had to experience in the process, or more importantly what HE had to experience in the process, the journey. The battle of the beast.

There isn't a day that goes by where I don't lay my head down at night and run the whole thing through my head before I pass out to sleep. The treatment, the suffering, the emotions, the fear.

The decisions.

Decisions that no parents should have to make. Ever. There were so many life altering decisions that we made on Wesson's behalf that I can't help but wonder "what if" we had done something differently.

"What if" (for example) we had actually taken a physician up on the free ride back home for hospice.

Would we feel better right now?

Would we be happier as parents who got to hold their child as he took his last breath knowing that he was comfortable, peaceful and in the arms of the ones that loved him the most.

Or would we then always wonder if he could have been cured? Was it the best choice to push him to the limit, finally cure him of his cancer even though his body suffered the harshness of the treatment and not have our arms wrapped around him as he took his last breath?

These kind of mind games will make a person go crazy, but that is what you are left with as a parent of a child who has lost their battle to cancer or the side effects of it.

What I do know is that I can have the confidence that God is holding him with his soft loving embrace and giving him the love and care that we were unable to the last six weeks of his life.

This always makes it better.

These are just a few of the reasons why we have chosen to fight.

To run.

To raise -- awareness and funds.

Somedays I think honestly I would rather lay down and surrender to the harshness of the reality that our son is gone, give in to the pain and forget about the fight.

Stop trying.

But then I see his picture, watch a video, hear his song or get a little nudge from the good man up above and I realize that this was Wesson's plan, his goal, his reason.

To make a change.

Amazing what such a small child, a short life, and a valiant story can do for the world.

Those beautiful blue eyes, that smart look -- sometimes I watch his videos and I'm like "You knew didn't you?" I didn't know it Wesson -- that you weren't going to live past thirteen months.

I can't believe now that I didn't know it.

But I'll be darned you knew it.

Smart little angel baby -- who shows up in places you know I'll be looking for you. Who makes my bad days a whole lot better, and even when your not here in body...

I can always feel you in spirit.

I love that.

So this will be it. A new goal in life, a new mission and a new dream.

For Wesson. For my friend's children who have too lost their battles. For the parents, researchers, physicians, and families who haven't slept.

And for the children at every pediatric hospital that deserves a chance at life. Life outside hospital walls and free from tubes, infections, nurses and lab results.

It has to get better.

Please help us make it better.

Logan and I will be heading up to Sioux Falls April 4th and 5th for the 6th Cure Kids Cancer Radiothon that will broadcast live from the Sanford Children's Caste of Care.

We hope you can all tune in and donate if you can toward such a wonderful cause.

We have done a new radio interview for this year's event, as well as the attached video that talks about what it's like to be a parent of a child with cancer, what it's like to lose and why we need more support and more donations, and most importantly better research and treatment options for pediatric and childhood cancer.