Sunday, September 12, 2010

Tribute Videos

Here are the two tribute videos we used in my mom's Celebration of Life service.

Pat's Tribute Slideshow from Charlie Lyons-Pardue on Vimeo.

Pat's Family Reflection Tribute from Charlie Lyons-Pardue on Vimeo.

Friday, July 16, 2010

California Service

My mom's California service will be on August 21st at 2:00 pm at Mission Valley Church of the Nazarene in San Diego, CA

In lieu of flowers, donations can be sent to Bonita Park (this is where my mom has worked for the past three years and where my parents live) designated for an 18 hole miniature golf course for the Nazarene campground. This was a projects she was excited about and was talking about it the day before she passed away.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Having Fun

My mom is having fun in Heaven without us. She went home to be with the Lord yesterday at 4:00pm. She was surrounded by her family with her grandkids running around.

The Celebration of Life service will be Wednesday, June 30 at 10:00 am at the Angus Church of the Nazarene near Ruidoso, New Mexico. There will also be a celebration service in San Diego, California at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Bonita Park (this is where my mom has worked for the past three years and where my parents live) designated for an 18 hole miniature golf course for the Nazarene campground. This was a project she was excited about and was talking about it the day before she passed away.

Bonita Park
HC 71 Box 1159
Capitan, NM 88316

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

A New Chapter

My Dad, Amy, Aunt Kathy, and I accompanied my mom to her doctor appointment today. They drew blood and Aunt Kathy took the lab work to the hospital. While she was doing that we had the doctor appointment.

The doctor reviewed her medications and symptoms. She explained the options my mom had. The first option was to continue Chemo. She had never finished the last chemo and there were a few other chemo possibilities. The second option was to go on Hospice. She asked all of us what we thought but the three of us left the decisions to mom. She said she felt she had fought hard and decided to go on Hospice. She then went on to ask the doctor if she was giving up too early. The doctor said no and that she thought my mom has fought long and hard against this battle.

We are not sure if the doctor was a Christian but she talked about God a lot through the appointment. I asked if she had ever witnessed a miracle at this stage and she said anything is possible with God.

When we got in the car I saw my mom cry for the first time through this battle. She apologized to us for giving up. She said she promised she would try everything. We were quick to tell her she did not give up. She fought this cancer in a way we've never seen before. She endured a lot, with no complaints, and had an amazing attitude this last year and a half.

We are happy that the focus will be on her comfort and that we will have help from Hospice.

My mom is an amazing lady who fought cancer with God, humor, and perseverance. I couldn't have asked for a better example of how to handle difficult situations. The battle is not over...we will continue to fight with prayer (the best medicine). Pastor Rick Hutchison and Stan Yocum (her boss) said sometimes things need to get to the impossible for miracles to happen. I know many people are praying, please keep it up.

Along with praying for a miracle, please pray for my mom's comfort level and breathing, and the family as we adjust to the new chapter in our lives.

Busy Day

First of all, Amy and I are soooooooo happy we are here with our mom and dad. We have been able to help a lot more here than in San Diego. :)

Monday, June 21st was a long busy day and my mom was a trooper. She needed labs done, chest x-ray, and a Zometa shot. She usually sleeps around 20 hours a day, so the festivities from the day were going to keep her from her beauty rest.

We borrowed a wheel chair from the camp ground to help her get around. Aunt Kathy, Amy , and I loaded mom in the car with two oxygen tanks and a wheel chair. We went to the oncology office first. It was a VERY busy day. They drew some blood for the labs and were concerned with her current condition. The nurse said it was a possibility that we could squeeze her in to see the doctor. We loaded mom back into the car and took her across town to the hospital to get a chest x-ray. After the chest x-ray we got back into the car and headed back to the oncology office.

Her labs showed that her potassium levels were very low. They started my mom on a potassium IV that lasted for four hours. We were not able to see the doctor on Monday (we have an appointment on Tuesday, June 22nd.

We left that house around 10:30 in the morning and didn't get her home till 6:30 pm. She was exhausted from all the fun activities from the day.

We were also able to arrange having a hospital bed and wheel chair delivered to the house. We wanted the hospital bed for many reasons. Her normal bed is too high and she needs her bed to be at a 35 degree angle to help her breathing. My mom wanted the bed in the living room so she wouldn't miss out on the fun. : ) We are thankful for the bed and newer wheelchair to help my mom be more comfortable.

Amy and I came just in time. All four of us kept busy between running my mom around town and figuring out the hospital bed.

Keep praying for a miracle.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

An update from Pat's sister, Kathy,

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Sara asked me to write an update on her "Praying for a Miracle" blog, so I will do my best. Many friends have been asking specifically how to be praying, so I hope this will help.

Howard brought Pat home on Thursday, June 17th after 10 days in the hospital. I drove up the same day to be of help in any way possible. I had not seen her for awhile so I was not prepared for the decline in her health.

She is retaining fluids and it is very apparent in her feet and ankles. She finds it hard to find a comfortable position for breathing and resting.

Pat is scheduled for a lung x-ray, lab work and Zometa shot on Monday. On Tuesday morning she is scheduled to see an Oncologist. It will be a struggle for her to get ready and out to the car for these trips to town. She needs help in walking even short distances and it leaves her breathless.

A special prayer meeting just for Pat was held at her church last night at 8:45. About 25 people dropped whatever they were doing, when notified, and made their way to the church to lift her up to our Lord. We continue to ask for your prayers on Pat's behalf. Howard, Sara, Jeff, Amy and the rest of the family also need your prayers.

On a lighter note, congratulations to Sara on completing all of the work for her master's degree!!!!

Sara and Amy were planning on coming June 29th to stay with their parents for the month of July but decided to come sooner. They flew to NM today and really surprised Pat this evening.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

In the Hospital Again

Here is a summary of the many things that have happened this past week.

Last Monday 6/7/10

Mom went to the cancer center in Ruidoso to see her nurse Karen. My mom skipped her chemo the Thursday before because she was still fighting her infection and was having a hard time getting out of the house. As of last Monday she was still having a very difficult time breathing. She could only sleep and breath sitting up and leaning over with her head on a table. Karen her nurse decided that it was best to send her back to the hospital (she just got out of the hospital the Wednesday before) to get the breathing situation under control.

An ambulance picked her up from the cancer center and got her to Albuquerque in two hours. She was hooked up to oxygen and watched the movie Rudy in the Ambulance. My dad went home to pack and met her at the hospital; also, my Aunt Suzanne drove up from Roswell.

This is when the waiting game began. While at the hospital she has had many tests, x-rays, scans, and ultrasounds. The big decision was deciding what to do to help her breathing. There were two options:

Option 1- Insert a medicine into her lungs that would scar her lungs and keep them from filling up with fluid. The procedure would be extremely painful and there were mixed messages on the guarantee of how effective it would be.

Option 2- Insert a drain into her lungs. This drain would allow my mom to drain her own lungs when she felt the need.

My mom decided to go with the drain. This procedure was done on Friday 6/11/10. The procedure went well and my dad went through the training on how to use the drain.

The focus has mainly been on her breathing. She has been doing breathing treatments and talking with doctors about things she can do at home and while she is sleeping to help her breathing. Also, for the first time my mom is starting to take pain medication which is amazing. Cancer is in the bones can be very painful and the doctors have been amazed that she has not needed pain medicine since day one. They want to transition her to pill form of her pain meds before she leaves the hospital. The pain meds have been helpful and have helped her sleep better.

While in the hospital she has had some problems with her blood pressure and she has become dehydrated again. Thankfully she is in the hospital, so that they can help her even though they keep her from resting in the day because of the many nurses, student nurses, technicians, and doctors in and out of her room.

On a positive note my mom has been sleeping better and she got up and walked around for the first time without loosing her breath.

Aunt Suzanne has been sleeping in the hospital with my mom. My dad has been staying in a hotel. Aunt Suzanne went home today and my dad will be sleeping in the hospital room with my mom. They still do not know when they are leaving. There also has not been any decision about what the next step is for chemo. We do know that the cancer is growing.

Please keep praying and I will keep you posted.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Rough Week and Googly Eyes

My mom has had a rough week. A lot has happened, so I’ll try to cover what has happened.

Thursday, May 27th
Mom requested a chest x-ray because breathing has become more difficult for her. The x-ray showed that her right lung was filling up (actually it is the area surrounding the lung). The doctor drained a quart of fluid from her right lung. The fluid was pushing the bottom of her right lung up, which was effecting her breathing.

Friday, May 28th
She went back for a chest x-ray. The doctor was hoping that the lower portion of her lung might drop back into position to ease her breathing. The x-ray showed that the lower portion did not drop and that the area was filling up with fluid again. Any action was put on hold because of the holiday weekend.

Saturday, May 29th – Sunday May 30th
We all noticed a change in my mom over the weekend. She was continuing to have a hard time breathing. She was sleeping all day, was listless, had no energy, not eating because she couldn’t keep it down, and was having coughing fits. There was talk about going to the ER but mom had no energy to want to get up and go.

Monday, May 31st
Things continued to get worse so the decision was to go to the ER around 8:00 pm. They immediately put her on an IV of fluids for dehydration. My dad saw an immediate change in her as she began to get fluids. After they got her IV started they took x-rays. They found that she had an infection. They then put her on antibiotics through the IV. She was a trooper through all of this and endured 7 hours on an uncomfortable bed in the ER. My mom was admitted and stayed till Wednesday, June 2nd.

She is home now and is still sleeping all day. She’s trying to eat and she still has the coughing attacks. Overall there has been a change. We all hope for my mom to be comfortable and we hope that something can be done for her comfort.

She is going to chemo today. Please pray for strength for my mom. It takes a lot for her to go places because she would rather be home sleeping. Also, pray that they can figure out what is going on and they can find a way to make her comfortable. She is still trying to get to work when possible. She doesn't want them to have too much fun without her :-)

My dad has been AMAZING. As you would expect, he is taking care of her, serving her, and doing anything to make her feel comfortable. Please pray for him as he continues to take care of my mom.

On a lighter note below are pictures from my mom’s chemo two weeks ago. Everyone, even Gretta were all googly eyed over chemo.

My Aunt Suzanne made this for my mom. We are blessed the hope we receive from God.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Results, Graduation, and Chemo

There is never a dull moment in the Ours’ family. We always have something going on. Below is an update on what has been keeping us busy.

My mom has finished 3 treatments of her current chemo. This chemo has been the hardest on her. It has taken all her energy away and has made her feel exhausted ALL the time. She has done a lot of sleeping and it never takes away the exhausted feeling. However, she still continues to go into work through all of this.

CT Scan Results

My mom had a scan before she came to San Diego for my graduation. My mom decided to wait to hear the results of the scan till after their trip to San Diego. She had a doctor’s appointment on May 12th. The test results came back that the cancer continued to grow in her liver and lungs. My mom asked for a printout of the results to take home and review. Later my mom noticed that the scan was not compared to the most recent scan (this is proof that it is important to be proactive in your doctor appointments). We finally received the correct results. The CT scan showed that there were no changes since the last scan. This means that the chemo kept the cancer from growing. This is good news but we want the chemo to get rid of the cancer. She will now start a different type of chemo this Thursday May 20th. The new chemo treatment will be every two weeks. We are hoping that the new chemo will not take her energy away and her hair might grow back.

San Diego

My parents came out for my graduation from Azusa Pacific University. It took a lot of planning and perseverance from my mom. We were concerned that the weekend would be too hard on my mom (traveling, visitors, sitting through the graduation in the heat, and having a place for my mom to rest). The first concern was having a supply of oxygen on the plane and at our apartment. My mom rented a portable oxygen machine that makes oxygen from the air (her name was Bertha). Oxygen tanks and an oxygen concentrator were delivered to our apartment. The next concern was planning a weekend that would not be too much for my mom. Once graduation was over she got to rest in our tiny apartment. We were happy that Amy came for the weekend too. We were all cozy in our two bedroom one bath apartment.


Below are pictures from my mom’s last chemo. This chemo session was around six hours, which gave my mom, Aunt Suzanne, and Greta time to read lots of magazines.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


The Ours family was together for Easter and enjoyed a short weekend together. Kaelee and Isaac were the focus of the weekend. Kaelee is starting to walk and had fun playing on the stairs. Her smile can melt your heart and her laugh is adorable. Isaac has a vivid imagination and loves books. He was really into telling all of us he loves us and giving hugs, kisses, and zurberts. Isaac also woke up both mornings around 5:30 a.m. to play in his clubhouse. He would come down the stairs in the dark and would try to get Grammy (she was sleeping on the couch) to play with him.

Jeff and Isaac having fun in the clubhouse : )

Isaac in his clubhouse at 5:30 a.m.

Kaelee and Isaac had fun at the animal room at Bonita Park

Kaelee's Easter Outfit

Love this pic!!!

My mom started a new chemo a month ago. She was extremely tired, had a terrible cough, had a hard time breathing, and her neuropathy started coming back in her hands, of course she worked at her job through all of this. This is the first time we have seen the chemo and cancer affect her this bad.

A couple of things were done to help her comfort level. She is now on 24-hour oxygen and they lowered the dosage of her chemo to hopefully maintain the neuropathy. The oxygen helped her energy level and breathing.

The oxygen tank has been life altering. It is something that my mom needs to have on all the time. She has a machine at home that makes oxygen from the air. She has a 45-foot cord, which gives her freedom to walk around the house. The tubing loves to get tangled up around chairs or in computer cords. The storage room has turned into storage for oxygen tanks for when my mom leaves the house. My dad is amazing at making sure there are enough tanks in the car or at work.

My mom has named her portable oxygen tank “Greta.” We decided to make a dress for Greta two hours before her chemo yesterday. We gathered scraps of fabric and quickly assembled a dress (please do not critique the quality). The chemo center loved it and they were requesting the same dress to be made for them.

My dad must really love my mom : )

Aunt Suzanne changed the chemo center’s bulletin board for Spring. She did an amazing job like always. : ) We stayed with the Spring theme and did a spring photo shoot.

Please pray for my mom’s strength with this second round of chemo. This time she felt really good the morning after her chemo but was quickly fading by the evening. We are also praying that she will have enough energy to attend my Masters Graduation in California in May.

Please continue to pray for the miracle of healing in my mom’s life. God is capable of much more than we can imagine.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Wow! It has been way too long since my last post. A lot has happened but at the same time there hasn’t been any fun Chemo treatment photo shoots.

First, I’ll give you an update on the Ours Family.

- Amy convinced my parents to take her to Disney World for Christmas. They had a blast and spent a whole week there.
- Amy, Dan and, I spent New Years with mom and dad and had a lot of fun in the snow.
-My Grandma Ours passed away in January. She lived a long life serving Jesus. We miss her but we are happy she is in a wonderful place, pain free. Everyone in the family, except my mom (she had an important doctor’s appointment), flew to Pennsylvania for the service and to spend time with our grandpa.
-Dan and I also got to spend a wonderful weekend with my parents in February - Presidents weekend.

As you can tell we don’t let miles get in the way of spending time with each other. Phone calls also help us keep in touch.

Now, for the update on my mom: The last chemo my mom was on was not making a difference in fighting the cancer. She also received results from a bone scan that said there had not been much change over the year. My mom decided to look into getting an opinion from another doctor and possibly trying experimental drugs. After figuring things out with insurance and using connections through our friend, Wanda Golson, my mom finally got an appointment with a doctor at the University of New Mexico Cancer Center. My mom really liked the doctor and we were hoping it would open up new opportunities. We were bummed that there were not any experimental treatments open that she was eligible for. The doctor suggested trying hormone treatments and she would let my mom know if a new experimental treatment would benefit her.

So, my mom went on hormone treatments and changed to a different Doctor at the treatment center she had been going to in Ruidoso. (Albuquerque Doctors) She has been on the hormone treatments since the end of January. Since then her energy level has really dropped and she has developed a HORRIBLE cough.

My mom had a CT scan yesterday and met with the doctor today for the results. The cancer is back and is as bad or worse than it was the first time she found out it came back. The cancer is still in her bones and has grown again in her liver and lungs. Her low energy was from the cancer taking over her liver and the cough is from fluid in her lungs because of the growth of cancer. On Monday my mom is going to start a new chemo that is going to have guns blazing at this cancer. The chemo is going to be strong. The side effects are hair loss, tiredness, and low white blood cells.

The news was frustrating to hear because we feel like we are back at square one. The doctor said she still has hope. : ) My mom is strong as usual and went back to work after the appointment with the doctor. She’s ready to attack the cancer and I know she is able to do this because of God, my dad’s support, family support, work support, and most importantly all your prayers. Please continue to pray for my mother’s strength and for a miracle of healing.

Below are some pictures from a chemo back in December. My mom and Amy brought back a little of Disney World.