Stephen: Sydni was given no chance to live when she was two months old. At three to nine months old, she was given a minimal chance of survival. The doctors refused to show any glimmer of “survival hope” past Sydni living to see two years of age…except, here we stand today, and Sydni is now fifteen years old! Her health statuses can change extraordinarily fast. A good stretch can last for a few days or even a collection of months, only to take a sudden unforeseen turn for the worse before one can utter the words “what just happened?” Last year, one day Sydni was laughing and smiling and melting my heart as only she can do, and then hours later she was being rushed to Children’s Hospital by ambulance while enduring a brutal Grand Mal seizure. Shortly thereafter she needed emergency brain surgery which resulted in her heart rate dropping to life-threateningly low levels. This eventually led to six subsequent brain procedures and approximately four months in the hospital. (Sydni has endured approximately 48 brain procedures.) As the calendar of life continues on, the innocence and purity in each one of Sydni’s smiles reminds me every day that, despite the all too often stumbling blocks that I have now become accustomed to, life does not have to be picture-perfect in order to be experienced as a most magnificent journey!
THIS is why I have decided to share Sydni’s story. If I am going to welcome the world into our personal, very private, and exceedingly emotional crossing in order to help others, then I imagine I must go all in to do so. I have written numerous song lyrics while on this cancer journey with Sydni, like the one below.
My daughter Sydni is my hero.
Her smile is my Northern Star.
I am most grateful for being nudged by God’s angel,
I now treasure common blessings which were always ‘never afar’.