Monthly Archives

February 2016

Life

What My Kids Are Learning Through This Journey

Memphis had a hockey game yesterday against a team from Chilliwack at Centre Ice in the Blueridge area of Abbotsford. It was the last game of the season before he has two final tournaments. He was especially excited about this game because his friend was coming to watch him play. It was so fun to watch Memphis trying his hardest, and then always looking to the stands to see if we were watching. Memphis’s little buddy did a great job cheering him on wants to sign up to play next year.

This post isn’t about Memphis’s hockey game, it’s about what happened when we were walking to the car after the game. As we were walking towards the Flex, I turned around to see where the boys were when a thought popped into my mind that caught me off guard – I wonder what Memphis thinks about me? Now, hear me out. Don’t feel sorry for me or think I am being too hard on myself, because I know I am not. It was an honest question. Our kids can be often overlooked during difficult times. In that moment I wanted to know what Memphis thought about me? What does he think about when he sees me? What does he worry about? What does he think about when he knows what daddy is going through? The thought really began to affect me. It challenged me. You even feel somewhat helpless.

Thankfully the thoughts didn’t last too long…

Our kids look to us as parents more than we realize. There are always watching. Always listening. Even when we don’t think they are – they most certainly are. Through this journey, Memphis, along with Nola, and River have had front row seats to see some incredible things! They too have learnt a lot through this time. You learn a lot about yourself, others, and God through pain and suffering. It is a beauty to behold. They have had the opportunity to see their parents ‘live out their faith.’ It has been one incredible ride so far, and I would n’t change a thing. Our children watch everyday the practical, and tangible ways God has taken care of us – usually through His people. It is fun talking to them about the things of God, and that even though in life there will be difficult times, He is still good – NO MATTER WHAT! Not only is God working in my life through this process, I know He is doing a deep work in my kid’s lives too.




Life

This Girl

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She turns 9 today.

Her name is Nola Grace Sabourin.

Nola means ‘champion’ or ‘famous one.’

That day is a blur to me. I won’t even attempt to tell the story of Nola’s birth. I will say though, she was, and is perfect. I remember watching her come out. It is the most the most amazing ‘act’ I have have ever laid eyes on. That day forever changed me. It changed Jamie too. Jamie wasn’t big on having kids when we first started dating. She wasn’t opposed. It just wasn’t something high on her agenda. Since having Nola, Jamie has become one of the most sacrificial, loving, and passionate woman I know. I am very grateful to her, and all the intense work she put in (and still does on a daily basis) to bringing in three incredible kids.

Today, we celebrate Nola!

One quick story…

I remember when we first brought Nola home. We had no idea what we were doing as parents. We still don’t. Nola was a colic baby. At the time, we didn’t really know this. Due to our lack of experience as parents we did whatever we could to help her fall asleep. This went on for nearly three months. We were zombies, and we were about to crack. I remember walking Nola at 3AM in the underground parking garage where we lived for hours just so Jamie could get some sleep. We would take her for car rides just to help her get the red to her little body needed. We called her our ‘little bird.’ She was ours, there was no turning back now. Jamie got educated real fast, and started to put some of the principles she was learning about to the test. They worked! We got Nola on a schedule, and our lives have never been the same!

Anyways…

Back to the real reason for this post. Nola.

Nola,

Daddy loves you so much. When you were born you will never know the impact your birth, and the birth of your brothers have had on my life. I just ant you to know how proud I am of you! I think you are amazing! I love how you are thoughtful and kind toward others. I think you are artistically gifted! I love how you use your imagination. Don’t ever lose that Nola – your imagination. I really like when you create something and give it to me. You are a very generous young lady! Your mom and I think you are beautiful. Inside and out! You are a gift from God to our family. I love Nola Grace Sabourin. Forever and always!

Dad

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Family Health Journey Life Story Update

Living With Cancer

It has been 7 months since I was diagnosed with Stage 4 Colon cancer. For those who may not know, the cancer was initially found in my colon, but after further testing it revealed that the cancer had metastasized to my liver, and lungs. I can’t really describe what it was last like in that moment when the oncologist informed us of the life altering news.

Our world was turned upside down in a moment, and we have been trying to recover ever since.

Since then, a lot has changed. The way I eat. The way I live.

Everything is different now!

We have a new normal.

For the past 7 months I have been living with an intruder. An uninvited guest who has taken up residency in my body. Although this unwanted guest has decided to call my body a home, I have to admit that it has taught me a lot about myself, my family, and humanity. We have a love/strongly dislike relationship.

Here is what I have discovered so far living with cancer…

LOVE

– I love how it has brought me closer in my walk with the Lord.
– It has given me a deeper appreciation for life, family & friends.
– It is changing the way I look at things.
– It is changing me.
– It has given us opportunities to encourage and support others.
– This diagnosis has ‘forced’ us (in a good way) to really start living. Jamie and I will not allow this intruder to keep us from living our dreams.

STRONGLY DISLIKE (AKA – HATE)

– That it has chosen to live in my body.
– That it tries to steal from me everyday. My joy, my hope, and my strength. Everything!
– That it causes arguments with my wife
– It has added a ton of pressure to our lives.
– It has caused fear to be a stronghold in my life at times.
– That it doesn’t want to leave!

These are just a few of the discoveries I have made since being diagnosed with Stage 4 Colon Cancer. As we continue to fight, and forge ahead, I look forward to the lessons I will learn with living with cancer.




Health Life Update

So Many Emotions

Yesterday wasn’t a good day!

I was an emotional basket case. I don’t think I have ever had an experience in my entire life-like I did yesterday. It was crazy! It started off in the morning on my walk to my treatments. I was listening to King Of My Heart by John Mark McMillan, and his wife Sarah when all of a sudden my mind began to flood with random thoughts.

Sad thoughts.

Painful thoughts.

Thoughts of dying, and what life would be like for Jamie and the kids if I wasn’t around.

Weird. Where did these come from? For the most part, I have been doing well with keeping track of my thought life. I’ll blame it on the detoxing. Anyways, I made it to the doctors and went about my day as if nothing happened.

That didn’t last too long. I sat in the treatment chair, got hooked up for treatment, but we ran into problems right away. My IV was causing complications. After being poked a bunch of times with a needle, the IV was inserted and I was on my way. I didn’t get too far before we started having more problems. The IV was n’t going as fast as it usually does. So what usually takes about 2 hours ended up being a 3.5 hour ordeal.

Not fun.

It is the afternoon now.

I just got home from my second treatment of the day…

I am still feeling pretty good. I haven’t had another crying episode since this morning. I go upstairs to continue my treatments and not 10 minutes into it, my mind begins to flood with thoughts and images. I can’t control myself. I start wailing! Not crying, I mean, gut wrenching wails. I have never experienced anything like this before. I felt as though I was grieving. I kept on seeing images of all the times I have failed as a husband and father. It was like my life was flashing before my eyes. I have done a lot of drugs in my life, but I have never experienced anything life this before.

I crawled out of the bathroom and into my bed. I pulled the covers over my head and kept wailing. I think I freaked the kids out, but they cuddled next to me in bed as I lay there and sob. Jamie was amazing! She came into the room and sat on the bed and began to rub my back, and prayed.

The crying continued for what seemed like an eternity. As weird, and unexpected as last night was, I know it was needed. It was healing. I feel so good today! I feel like a brand new person. It feels like a huge weight has been lifted from my shoulders.

I know this isn’t the last time I will experience something like this. It’s a part of the process. I know there is more to come. I welcome it as I know it is beneficial to me, and our family as we walk out this journey.




Life

Do You Have A Hobby?

I was a very active kid. I was always outside playing in the forest behind our house with my friends building tree forts. If I wasn’t in the forest, I was somewhere on Maple Ave, playing with all the neighbourhood kids. I have many fond memories of my childhood. I was also very involved in our local sports scene playing hockey and soccer. Unfortunately, as I got older, the less active I became.

I had heard growing up how important it was for adults to have a hobby. Really? A hobby? Who needs a hobby? What good can a hobby bring to one’s life anyways? My entire adult life has been free of hobbies. Nothing has really caught my fancy. Obviously there are things I do enjoy doing from time to time, but I wouldn’t consider them a hobby. If I had a choice I would rather sit on my couch and watch TV.

That all changed a couple of weeks ago. ..

To help take back control of my thought life, I decided it was time to find a hobby. There are a lot of things I enjoy doing, but none have brought me as much fulfillment as educating myself and discovering how amazing a camera is. I have now begun to collect them. I am blown away by the ability to capture a moment in time and to have the capability to look at an image or even video footage whenever I want.

Crazy!

Thanks Johann Zahn for designing the first camera in 1685.

Having a hobby hasn’t just been about having fun and doing something constructive with my time. It has forced me to become motivated, in tuned with my surroundings, and to come alive with a new discovered passion. May we not keep our eyes focused on the pavement cautious of the puddles, but may our eyes be open to the landscapes, the architectural designs around us, and most importantly the lives we get to do life with every day. This is a new season. A season of new possibilities and dreams, what are you passionate about? Do you have a hobby? What is it? What would you like it to be if you could choose?